The season of all European championships is over. We know all the champions, all the winners, and all the losers across local championships and European tournaments. And after the problematic summer last year and the cancellation of Euro 2020, it’s time to see who is going to be the next European champion. Over the course of the next few days, I’m going to do reviews of all groups and give my verdict on the teams and their chances of progressing/winning the tournament.
Group A: Italy, Switzerland, Turkey, Wales
After missing out on the World cup in Russia in 2018, the Italians will be highly motivated for revenge. They already showed how determined they are in the qualifiers. Manager Roberto Mancini was appointed after the World Cup failure, and he quickly thought his team how to play. They won all their ten games in the group, conceded only four goals, and scored 37.
The core of the team is players from the Italian Seria A, plus the trio of PSG players: Alessandro Florenzi, Marco Verratti, and Moise Kean. The fact that most of the players play in a couple of teams can give the Squadra some sense of community. The squad is relatively young but with a lot of quality in it. They are led by a manager with experience at the highest level, which is a premise for a team that can bring success in the long term.
Italy has won the Euro only once in 1968 and lost the final on two occasions in 2000 and 2012. Without a doubt, Italy is the big favorite in Group A and the tournament. And only time will tell if they can reach the expectations people have for them.
Switzerland is always a team not to underestimate. A team composed of players from across Europe: England, Italy, Germany, France, Switzerland, Netherlands, Portugal, and even Croatia. Every player brings something unique to the team. A team without a big star, but with many leaders.
The Rossocrociati are not likely to win the tournament, but won’t give up without a fight and won’t let anyone beat them easily.
Turkey missed the last four World Cups, failed to qualify for Euro 2012, and wasn’t very good at the 2016 European championship. But in the last few years, Turkish football is improving rapidly. The manager Senol Gunes led the team to their biggest international success so far: third place at the World Cup in Korea & Japan in 2002.
The biggest stars of the team are Leicester’s Caglar Soyuncu and the ageless Burak Yilmaz, who just let Lille to their first French title in ten years. The Crescent-stars are the dark horse in this group.
This is Wales’ only second European championship in their history. But, they weren’t just tourists at their debut back in 2016 and reached the semi-finals. Because of Ryan Giggs’s legal problems, they’ll be led by his assistant Rob Page. The team’s core is mainly Championship (England’s second division) players, tough players that won’t hide on the field, and will always give their best.
Their captain Gareth Bale turns into a real beast when he puts on the Dragons’ shirt. A team that’s capable of spoiling every team’s party.