While another club season draws to a close, there's no let-up in the action as Euro 2020 gets underway in a couple of weeks
Photo: "UEFA EURO 2020 Trophy at Bucharest" by wuestenigel is licensed under CC BY 2.0

While another club season draws to a close, there will be no let-up in the action as Euro 2020 (11 June – 11 July) gets underway in a couple of weeks. The tournament, which UEFA still uses ‘2020’ for sponsorship reasons despite taking place in the summer of 2021, will feature 24 teams in a multi-country format. England, Scotland and Wales have all qualified. So, there will be plenty of interest from the home nations.

But what do the betting odds say? Which of the big hitters are favourites? And who is tipped to struggle? Let’s break it all down into a hand Euro 2020 betting guide:

Euro 2020: The Favourites

England, yes England, are favourites for Euro 2020 with the majority of bookmakers. In the past, England sides have been predicted to do well. And we all know how that usually ends up. However, there is a sense that the favourites tag is merited this time. Not only does Gareth Southgate have one of the most talented squads in world football (yes, really), but England will play most of their games; including a potential Semi-Final and Final at Wembley. Odds for England are generally 5/1.

Of course, there are other great teams in with a shot. Top of the list comes France, who share co-favourites status with England. Steve Davies, writing in the MansionBet Euros blog, points out that France are chasing a unique bit of football history. Namely, France could become the first team to twice simultaneously hold the World Cup and European Championship trophies; France last holding both after winning the 1998 World Cup and Euro 2000. General odds for France are 5/1-6/1. 

The last of the hotly-tipped teams are Belgium, for whom the Euros represent the last step in a long journey to crown the Golden Generation. The likes of Kevin de Bruyne, Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku arguably have a few tournaments left at the peak of their powers. But other players – like Jan Vertonghen and Toby Alderwerield are entering the twilight of their careers. 11/2-6/1 is the average price for Roberto Martinez’ men.

The Other Big Names

In the last calendar year, Germany (8/1) have managed to lose 6-0 to Spain and, perhaps more embarrassingly, lose 2-1 at home to North Macedonia. Joachim Low’s men are getting it in the neck from the German media; many believing they could struggle in a group of death with Portugal and France. Speaking of Portugal (9/1), there is plenty expected of the defending champions. However, there are some whispers of discontent that the side is too focused on a certain Cristiano Ronaldo. As for Spain (9/1), they are not struggling. But there is a sense that this is a team in transition. Certainly, it is a young side under Luis Enrique, but don’t rule them out.

Dark Horses

Italy (11/1) look a team reborn under Roberto Mancini. Like Spain, however, there is probably more time needed for some young players to fully blossom. The Netherlands (12/1) probably would be backed by many punters – but the loss of Virgil Van Dijk hurts the Oranje just as much as it did Liverpool this season. Croatia (28/1) might seem a wise choice for value bettors too. But beware, this is not the same Croatia that made the 2018 World Cup Final. If we were to highlight one team that could surprise everyone, then it has to be Turkey (66/1). An excellent, underrated side, who can count both France and the Netherlands as recent scalps.

Other Tidbits

Watch out for the race for the Golden Boot, with both Harry Kane (5/1) and Romelu Lukaku (7/1) expected to be in the reckoning. In addition, remember that four of the six third-placed teams in each group will qualify for the knockouts. This takes away a lot of the jeopardy in the group stage. But it also makes it difficult to work out routes to the final. Finally, if you are betting on any games, you should take into consideration the travel for some teams. Games will be played in venues as faraway as Baku, Azerbaijan. This travel fatigue might be detrimental to some performances.

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