Euro 2016 is now only a couple weeks away and the hype for the big soccer tournament is building. The UEFA European Championship is coming at the perfect time of the summer as the NBA and NHL seasons come to a close, so a lot of eyes will be on this tournament, even in Canada, as we aren’t often treated to a ton of high profile international soccer matches on our normal cable networks.
I personally get pumped up every couple years for the big summer soccer tournament, whether it be the Euros or the World Cup. This year is no different, even though the Dutch, my European rooting interest did not qualify for the 24 team tournament this year.
In this article I’m going to look at each group and the odds to win the group for each team. The odds I’m using are from SportsInteraction.com or Bet365.com (whichever gives you the bigger payout). These are our two top rated sportsbooks for Canadians.
Let’s get into it….
France should be able to win this group. They have by far the most talented and experienced squad in this group and playing in front of their home fans should give them a big advantage against each one of these teams in the group stage.
Switzerland failed to score a goal in their two March friendlies against Ireland and Bosnia and Herzegovina, and I think putting the ball in the net could be a problem for the Swiss in France. I just don’t see any of these teams taking that #1 spot from the home side, but the odds aren’t the greatest so I’ll probably not be putting a bet on this group personally.
- England 1.83 (Bet365)
- Russia 4.33 (Bet365)
- Wales 5.35 (SIA)
- Slovakia 10.00 (SIA)
This is a more difficult group to call. England did rip through qualifying winning all 10 of their games, but it seems like England always performs better in qualifying than in the final tournament. Based on the odds I think Russia is the best bet here at 4.33. Artem Dzyuba will have to provide the offense, but I think he can continue to score at a strong pace like he did in the qualifying.
- Germany 1.40 (Bet365)
- Poland 5.38 (SIA)
- Ukraine 9.50 (Bet365)
- Northern Ireland 22.00 (SIA)
Germany and Poland were actually in the same qualifying group for Euro 2016 and the Germans only squeaked out the group win then by 1 point. Ukraine adds another wrinkle to this very interesting group because they have the talent and structure to do well in this tournament.
Based on these odds though I’m on Poland to win this group. The fire power they have with Lewandowski up front allows them to score goals in bunches which could be the deciding factor if they end up tied with Germany atop this group.
- Spain 1.57 (Bet365)
- Croatia 4.25 (SIA)
- Czech Republic 10.00 (Bet365)
- Turkey 10.00 (SIA)
The golden generation may be passed in Spain, but they are still always going to be one of the best teams in any international tournament. Croatia is the only team that could threaten Spain in a match, but I think there is also a good chance that the Croats could drop points to either the Czechs or Turkish, so I think it’s a fairly safe bet that Spain finishes atop this group. I wouldn’t even be surprised if they don’t concede a goal in the group stage.
- Belgium 2.10 (SIA)
- Italy 2.62 (Bet365)
- Sweden 7.00 (Bet365)
- Republic of Ireland 12.00 (SIA)
It’s a little bit strange to see Belgium as the group favourites over Italy in Group E, but this is the golden generation of Belgian soccer and they deserve the favourite tag in this group. Belgium advanced to the quarterfinals of the 2014 World Cup and this squad has only matured since then.
Add in the fact that Belgium defeated Italy in a friendly 3-1 back in November and the fact that Italy hasn’t won an international match since beating Norway 2-1 in October (5 matches ago) and you have to give the nod to Belgium in this group.
- Portugal 1.85 (SIA)
- Austria 3.25 (Bet365)
- Iceland 6.00 (SIA)
- Hungary 13.00 (Bet365)
This is a strange group that I really think any of the top 3 teams could take. Cristiano Ronaldo is obviously one of the very best players in the world, but he hasn’t necessarily always brought his A game in International competitions for his country. If he plays his best Portugal should win this group, but if not the door becomes open for both Austria and Iceland.
Check back every few days for more Euro 2016 betting articles!