When the draw for the UEFA EURO 2020 took place last Saturday, history was made in Group F.
Never before have the winners of the last three major titles been drawn in the same group of a tournament. But that all changed, as Germany (2014 World Cup), Portugal (Euro 2016) and France (2018 World Cup) found themselves all in the same group.
“I think that Fernando [Santos] and Joachim [Löw] will be thinking the same as me," France manager Didier Deschamps said. "It’s obviously the toughest of all the groups. He’s cunning, that Fernando [Santos]. I know what he’s like. At the EURO as well, he thought that France were the favourites to be crowned European champions [then Portugal beat us in the final]. We need to do our talking in the matches.”
Deschamps will be looking to win his, and France's second double, in history at the tournament. He was the captain of the French team that won the 1998 World Cup 3-0 over Brazil in Paris, then won the EURO 2000 2-1 in overtime over Italy. Now as the manager, Deschamps led Les Bleus to the final of EURO 2016, before losing 1-0 in overtime to Portugal. But the French rebounded to win the last World Cup, and come in as third favorites to do what Spain last did in 2012.
But this France side is not even the favorites to win its own group: Germany has that honor.
“France, Portugal and Germany," Löw said. "Interesting, and I am looking forward to June to start this championship. It’s also good for the fans: they want to have Germany against Portugal or France against Germany. The people, the stadium and the spectators [in Munich] will help us, but Portugal and France have a lot of experience; they have very good players. It doesn’t matter for them where they are playing.”
Portugal comes in as the defending champion, but are getting little respect in the odds at 16-1 to win the tournament. Cristiano Ronaldo is the favorite right now to be the leading scorer at 7-1.
But it is the perennial underachievers England, after its wild ride to the 2018 World Cup semifinals, that is now the betting favorite.
“Gareth Southgate’s England side may never have a better chance to win a major tournament than Euro 2020 next summer, especially as it will play a minimum of two games in front of a home crowd at Wembley" Peter Welch, speaking for gambling.com, said Tuesday. "Betting markets would seem to share this sentiment, where the Three Lions are currently favorites to win the tournament outright at around 4/1.
"World Champions France is second in the betting at 6.5/1, a price which bettors might see value in, especially as France Manager Didier Deschamps will be sticking with a similar squad to the one he took to Russia in 2018.
"Croatia, which lost to France in the World Cup Final, is around 25/1, which seems a big price considering how well it performed in Russia. If you are looking for a bet on one of the outsiders in the market, then Croatia could be a decent bet considering the current price.”
Much can change in the coming months before the tournament starts on June 12, 2020, and ends at Wembley Stadium one month later on July 12. There are still four teams to be determined in the playoffs next March, but for now, it looks like one the teams that have dominated the world football stage of late will be on top of the podium next summer, hoisting the EURO 2020 trophy.
As always, Fubo.tv will play a big part in the coverage, so check local listings to see where the matches will be.
(Top 10 best odds)
Playoff Path D Winner +2500
Czech Republic +1400
Playoff Path C Winner +2000
Playoff Path B Winner +1400
Playoff Winner +3300
If Belgium and France both win their groups, it could set the stage for another massive semifinal matchup, just like the 2018 World Cup, where the French won 1-0 and went on to win the title. Either team could come through the bracket, although if Germany wins Group F, France could have a tough draw to get back to its third straight major tournament final.
Group A: Italy -175
Group B: Belgium -125
Group C: Netherlands -200
Group D: England -250
Group E: Spain -300
Group F: France +125
Second choice: Belgium +500