Over a year on from its initial planned start date, Euro 2020 looks set to go ahead in the summer of 2021. With the tournament scheduled to take place for a month from 11th June to 11th July, the competition will see eleven different host countries accommodating the best twenty-four sides from Europe in group-to-knockout format.
With the competing sides announcing their rosters and making their final preparations ahead of the tournament’s commencement, here are three tasty looking games that you should look forward to catching when the tournament kicks off on June 11th.
England vs. Croatia – 15:00, 13th June, Wembley Stadium
England vs. Croatia has always been a tightly-contested spectacle, with the two sides jostling numerous times throughout the late 2000s, with the Chequered Ones securing an infamous win at Wembley to deny Steve McClaren’s Three Lions team a spot at Euro 2008.
However, in more recent times, the rivalry between the two teams has grown into one of the most enthralling in the world of international football. England’s hopes of bringing the 2018 World Cup home were brought to a gutting end at the hands of Croatia, before the Three Lions got a slight taste of revenge at the 2018-19 UEFA Nations League.
Two of international football’s biggest dark horses will lock horns again at Euro 2020 in Group D on Sunday 13th June at Wembley Stadium. The opening fixture for both teams, it will be fascinating to see how the two sides have progressed since their fateful encounter at the 2018 World Cup semi-finals, with the stake of a top spot out of the group most likely on the cards for the winner.
France vs. Germany – 21:00, 15th June, Allianz Arena
Two of the most decorated sides in international football, France vs. Germany is a fixture that boasts countless amounts of silverware and prestige over its history.
With that being said, the two teams are set to arrive at this summer’s competition with very contrasting storylines behind them. France arrive as the 2018 World Cup champions and a wealth of talent at their disposal, whilst Germany are still in the midst of a serious transition period after their dismal World Cup exit and the announcement of Joachim Lowe’s departure once the tournament concludes.
France defeated Germany 2-0 at Euro 2016 in the semi-finals in what marked a changing of the guard at the top table of international football, so it will be fascinating to see what the latest chapter in this intriguing rivalry will bring with it when the two sides kick off on the 15th June at Bayern Munich’s Allianz Arena.
Portugal vs. France – 21:00, 23rd June, Puskás Aréna, Budapest
One look at the football odds for this summer’s tournament will reveal the likes of Belgium, France and England amongst the favourites for a deep run at the competition, however one potential dark horse to look out for is Portugal.
The Euro 2004 runners up and Euro 2016 champions, Portugal are still blessed with the goal scoring prowess of the legendary Cristiano Ronaldo, but have ushered in a new golden era of talent with the likes of Bruno Fernandes, Diogo Jota, Joao Cancelo, Ruben Dias, Joao Felix amongst others coming through the ranks and impressing for some of the top teams in Europe’s domestic competitions.
The dark horses face off against France in the final round of fixtures in Group F at the Puskás Aréna in Budapest on the 23rd June, in what could be a pivotal moment for both teams’ hopes of qualifying for the knockout rounds, along with Hungary and Germany who also make up the tournament’s group of death.