Euro Cup 2016 Winners Prediction
Euro 2016 Betting Lines & Odds Analysis
By Matt Pitt
Teams Not To Bet On
Soccer fans are known to bet with their hearts rather than there heads, which can be deadly for their bankrolls. Most of us have done it, but we don’t recommend it. If you are thinking of betting on any of the following teams for Euro 2016 glory, instead of setting light to your money, donate it to a charity instead.
Prediction: Eliminated in the Group Stages
There is something about Sweden that makes people want to bet on them. Perhaps it is their vibrant jerseys, the fact many of their stars ply their trade in Europe’s top leagues, or simply because Zlatan Ibrahimovic is still one of the best forwards in the world despite rapidly approaching 35 years of age.
Sweden will not win Euro 2016. In fact, I predict they will not even progress from Group E, the so-called Group of Death. Our Scandinavian cousins find themselves pitched against Belgium, Italy, and the Republic of Ireland, and it is those first two teams who are most likely to finish in the top two spots.
You can get odds of -137 on Sweden qualifying for the next round, but I just do not see that as value, especially when one considers they struggled during qualifying and needed a playoff against Denmark, which they won 4-3, to book their place in France.
Prediction: First Knockout Round
Like Sweden, many soccer fans have a soft spot for Croatia, partly due to them performing well at Euro 2008 where they reached the quarter-finals, and finishing third in the 1998 World Cup in France.
Spain should sail through, Czech Republic will be looking to prevent a repeat of their three defeats in Euro 2008 while Turkey are more than capable of causing a few upsets. Should Croatia progress from their Group, their opponents would be the winner of Group E (most likely Belgium or Italy), or the winner of Group A, which is almost guaranteed to be France. I cannot see Croatia beating any of those teams.
Teams With a Fighting Chance
You tend to find that odds on an England victory at a major soccer tournaments are shorter than usual because of the English fans loyalty to their team – remember what we said about betting with your heart?
However, at Euro 2016 England do have a legitimate chance. Not only did they finish with 10 wins from 10 qualifying games, they have one of the easier groups, Group B, in the finals where they play Russia, Slovakia, and Wales.
Their likely knockout stage opponents are Poland, Ukraine, Croatia, or Turkey (who England should beat), with a potential quarter-final match against Portugal or Italy (again who they are capable of beating). This could set up a semi-final against Spain where England may falter.
Belgium have a young, exciting squad of players, but a large number of those players have been injured for periods of the current season. Vincent Kompany and Kevin De Bruyne of Manchester City are players who could fit into any team in the world, but have endured spells on the sidelines during 2015-16.
Also, you never know which Belgium will turn up. On their day they can be world beaters, when they don’t turn up they can be poor to say the least. Belgium also has a tough group with Italy, Sweden, and Republic of Ireland, then would probably face Portugal in the Round of 16, which could lead to a tie with England.
You best bet for Belgium would be on them qualifying from their group.
Teams Who Will Challenge
Write Germany off at your peril, the Germans excel at tournament soccer. While they do not have an out-and-out goalscorer as a forward, the entire team has goals in it, and so much creativity throughout that they could be described as artists.
Germany could face host nation France in the semi-finals and whoever wins that would probably go on and win Euro 2016. Germany beat France 2-1 in France in 2013, and then 1-0 at the 2014 World Cup. Although France won 2-0 in November 2015 in a friendly, I expect this German side to brush aside all who face them and become champions of Europe.
Spain won the European Championships in 2008 and 2012 and should come close to an unprecedented hat trick in 2016. However, I think they will be the losing finalists, falling at the hands of Germany.
On paper, Spain have an easier ride in their group (Croatia, Czech Republic, and Turkey), and their first real test would be in the semi-finals against England, if results pan out the way I expect. Spain should be too strong for the English, which would set up a tantalizing final against Germany who I expect to add the Euro 2016 trophy to their 2006 World Cup.More articles...