UEFA Euro 2020: Which team has the best chance to win the competition?
The UEFA Euro 2020 is a while away, but it's never too early for football analysis. The groups are almost set, with a few playoffs remaining to determine the final teams. All the big teams expected to put on a show have qualified, with everyone looking forward to the return of the Netherlands and Italy on the big stage.
There is a lot of chatter about who the favourites are, but isn't it always better to back it up with some solid facts and stats? So let's analyse the teams tipped to take the crown of European champions next summer.
The Dark Horses:
Croatia were a revelation in the 2018 World Cup. A remarkable run in the tournament was halted by France in the final, which also resulted in Luka Modric breaking Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo's hegemony of Ballon d'Or wins. Come Euro 2020, Croatia cannot be written off due to the sheer quality of players they contain albeit a drop in performance is clearly visible from their mainstays. They have been drawn in the same group as England, who they defeated in the semi-final of the World Cup.
Sweden had a great qualifying campaign, ending second in their qualifying group below Spain. They showed great promise with their performances against Spain, putting up a fight in a 1-0 loss and 1-1 draw against the former Euro champions. Zlatan Ibrahimovic's retirement has left the team devoid of big names, but they have able players in RB Leipzig's Emil Forsberg, Manchester United's Victor Lindelof and the vastly experienced Sebastian Larsson to help the team progress.
They reached the quarter-finals of the World Cup last year without Ibrahimovic, which would have been a real boost for the young team. Sweden is a team to be wary of, as they are more than capable of causing problems to Spain and Poland in their group.
Honourable Mentions: Poland, Switzerland, Ukraine