Euro 2020 preview: Tips on tournament winner, Golden Boot and England's chances via Betting Expert

Fans will finally get the feast of international football they’ve been yearning for with Euro 2020 starting on Friday after its year’s postponement due to the global pandemic.

Thursday, 10th June 2021, 10:11 am
England manager Gareth Southgate. Photo: Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

UEFA’s flagship international event will still be the celebration organisers had been hoping for as 2020 originally marked 60 years since the first edition of the competition. For the first time in its history, the tournament will take place in 11 different countries and venues around the continent. It all commences on Friday evening with Turkey taking on Italy in Rome at 8pm.

This is the second tournament since the expansion to 24 teams meaning minnows such as North Macedonia and Finland can compete against the usual suspects such as France and Germany, while Wales and Scotland have secured their ticket to the main event.

Whisper it, but there's a chance that football comes home. England have impressed on the international scene recently and building on their semi-final defeat in the 2018 World Cup could provide the nation the much-needed lift.

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There's plenty of young and exciting talent on show, including Kylian Mbappe, thought to be the heir to the title of the world’s best player is featuring in his first Euros after impressing in the 2018 World Cup. Dutch duo Matthijs de Ligt and Frenkie de Jong are also making their tournament debuts after learning their craft at the Ajax academy and moving to Juventus and Barcelona respectively. England offer some of the best young talent at the competition with the likes of Phil Foden and Mason Mount having had tremendous seasons at club level. Mount arrives having won the Champions League in his last competitive match so will be looking to transmit that success to The Three Lions.

Who will win?

France are 9/2 favourites but only beat Turkey to first place in their qualifying group by two points. Les Bleus have the strongest squad on paper and one of the only sides who can comfortably claim to have world-class players in every outfield area of the pitch including Raphael Varane at centre-back, N’Golo Kante and Paul Pogba in midfield along with Antoine Greizmann, Mbappe and Karim Benzema in forward positions.

England are now 5/1 having been 9/2 for long periods of the build-up but can’t offer the same quality across the field that France can. This is despite having Harry Kane who was top scorer in the Premier League as well as the qualification for the tournament. Belgium are 6/1 and as long as Kevin de Bruyne isn’t too damaged from his facial injury he picked up in the Champions League Final then they will be expecting to reach the later stages as a minimum. Germany are at 9/1 and are looking to bounce back on the international stage after their humiliating group stage exit at the last World Cup.

Tip: Portugal 8/1

A good bet at the top of the competition are Portugal whose odds are 8/1. They retain the central spine of their team that won Euro 2016 including Rui Patricio, Pepe and Cristiano Ronaldo. They are aided by a younger cohort of Ruben Dias, Diogo Jota and Joao Felix who all have starred to some degree for their clubs at the highest level over 20/21. Whilst they were lacklustre in qualifying, finishing second in their group to Ukraine they have the perfect blend of experience and flair to take them all the way.

Euro 2020 winner

France 9/2

England 11/2

Belgium 6/1

Spain 15/2

Germany, Italy, Portugal 8/1

Netherlands 12/1

Croatia, Denmark 28/1

Poland, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey 66/1

Russia, Ukraine 80/1

Austria, 100/1

Czech Republic 150/1

Finland 150/1

Wales 150/1

Scotland 250/1, Hungary, Slovakia 250/1

North Macedonia 750/1

Who will be top scorer?

Harry Kane leads the bookies’ odds at 5/1 to win the Golden Boot. Kane finished the season strongly, ending up as the Premier League’s top goalscorer. He’ll be looking to start where he finished off at the 2018 World Cup in which he was the leading marksman. Romelu Lukaku is next at 13/2 with the Belgian dominating Serie A this season as well as scoring 30 goals in all competitions. His image of an inconsistent finisher with a poor touch from his days in the Premier League has gone with his build-up play, athleticism and strike rate all vastly improving after two seasons at Inter Milan.

Mbappe is close behind at 8/1 but will struggle to break down the defences of Portugal and Germany in the group stage. Cristiano Ronaldo follows on from him at 16/1 and only needs one more goal to become the all time leading goalscorer at Euro Finals competition ahead of Michele Platini. Memphis Depay is also good odds at 16/1 considering the Netherlands have an easier group stage against the likes of Austria, North Macedonia and Ukraine.

Tip: Karim Benzema 18/1

Karim Benzema will be at his first international tournament since the 2014 World Cup after he and France coach Didier Deschamps broke peace after years of feuding. At 18/1 he looks like an excellent choice due to the supply he will get from the midfield and the wide forward areas. He’s revelled at Real Madrid since the departure of Cristiano Ronaldo and has 57 goals in his last two seasons for the club.

Golden Boot Winner

Harry Kane 5/1

Romelu Lukaku 13/2

Kylian Mbappe 8/1

Cristiano Ronaldo 12/1

Memphis Depay 16/1

Karim Benzema 18/1

Ciro Immobile 20/1

Antoine Griezmann 22/1

Alvaro Morata, Robert Lewandowski, Serge Gnabry, Thomas Muller, Timo Werner 25/1

Diogo Jota, Ferran Torres, Kai Havertz, Marcus Rashford, Olivier Giroud 33/1

How will England do?

The expectations of this England team have risen since their semi-final finish at the 2018 World Cup as well as getting to the last four of the Uefa Nations League in 2019. They have an exciting group of technically marvellous attacking midfielders in Foden, Mount and Jack Grealish. Combined with Kane in the centre and Marcus Rashford, Raheem Sterling and Jadon Sancho on the flanks, this explains why they are favourites at 5/1 to be the highest scorers over June and July.

Croatia should be their biggest test in the group although this isn’t the same side that defeated them in that 2018 semi-final with Ivan Rakitic and Mario Mandzukic retired. Scotland will be out to win at Wembley for the first time since 1999 in their second game and the Czech Republic will fancy their chances of getting to the last 16 but the bookies still have The Three Lions at 2/5 favourites to win the group. Foden is also favourite to win the young player of the tournament award at 7/2 but he’ll have to wait on whether manager Gareth Southgate selects him in his first eleven. He’s had his most consistent season to date winning the Premier League with Manchester City and improving in all aspects of his game.

England could face their most difficult match way before they even dream of reaching a first major final since 1966 with the winner of their group facing potentially one of Germany, France or Portugal in the last 16. They are 8/5 to be knocked out at the last 16 stage so that is definitely a bet worth keeping an eye on if they do manage to get maximum points from Croatia, Scotland and the Czechs.

England tournament odds

To win Group D - 2/5

Highest scorers in Euro 2020 - 5/1

To finish runner-ups in Euro 2020 - 8/1

Phil Foden to win the Best Young Player of the Tournament award - 7/2

To be eliminated at the last 16 stage - 8/5

Odds and tips via bettingexpert.com