How did the 2019 Ballon d'Or nominees fare in the Euro 2020 qualifiers?
- Performance analysis of the 2019 Ballon d'Or nominees in the Euro 2020 qualifiers.
The recently completed Euro 2020 qualifiers saw 20 teams book their places in the quadrennial continental tournament next summer.
During this qualifying campaign, many of the 2019 Ballon d'Or nominees were in action for their respective countries. And some of them dished out spectacular performances which sealed their team's passage to Euro 2020.
Cristiano Ronaldo was one such standout performer. The Portugal captain has scored in his last six Euro qualifier games, registering hat-tricks against Lithuania away and home. The defending champions qualified for Euro 2020 with a 2-0 away win at Luxembourg on the last matchday of qualifying action.
Let us find out where Ronaldo's performance ranks among all the 2019 Ballon d'Or nominees in action at the Euro 2020 qualifiers.
#17 Joao Felix (Portugal)
Following his debut for Portugal in the 2018-19 Nations League semifinals against Switzerland, Joao Felix featured in four qualifying games during the Euro 2020 qualifiers. However, the much-touted Atletico Madrid forward failed to score or provide an assist, while providing fleeting moments of his promising potential.
#16 Donny van de Beek (Netherlands)
Donny van de Beek featured in three games during the Euro 2020 qualifiers. The 22-year-old attacking midfielder, however, did not score a goal or provide an assist during the home and away games against Northern Ireland and the away game in Belarus.
#15 Virgil van Dijk (Netherlands)
The Netherlands and Liverpool captain has featured in all eight games in the 2020 Euro qualifiers. Virgil van Dijk scored his lone goal of the qualifiers in a matchday-1 4-0 home win over Belarus, while remaining a stout presence in the centre of the Dutch defence.
#14 Trent Alexander-Arnold (England)
The Liverpool defender, who missed England's first two games owing to back trouble, featured in three games during the Euro 2020 qualifiers. Alexander-Arnold provided an assist in England's 7-0 home win over Montenegro.
#13 Matthijs De Ligt (Netherlands)
Like his captain Van Dijk, Matthijs de Ligt featured in all eight Euro 2020 qualifying games for the Oranje. De Ligt scored his only goal of the qualifying campaign in a 2-3 home loss to group winners Germany. He also provided an assist in a 4-0 win in Estonia as Netherlands returned to a major tournament for the first time since the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.