Europa 2020 has become an England-based tournament with the 2 Semi-Finals & The Final taking place in Wembley.
And now there are 4:
DENMARK: After gaining their place in the Semi-Final, a Danish fan posted this most amusing tweet: “Euro gold not awaits one of the great football nations. But you should never underestimate England”. The Danes know that they are not one of Europes footballing powerhouses but the chutzpah of this remark is well pitched. This is a team that has found itself through adversity and they will have a belief based on both a presumption of inevitability and a confidence gained from 3 consecutive victories.
ENGLAND: Though the whole of England wants to believe that this tournament will be different, the undeniable fact is that they have progressed through the tournament without having to play one of the fancied teams. And this will again be the case with their next match, It’s an old sporting adage that you can only play what’s before you, but we will only really know if this England team is really as good as the country wishes & believes it to be IF they win The Final.
ITALY: My Quarter Final rule over the Italians said: “It’s hard to argue against this so-called more attack-minded Italian team but they have yet to be really challenged in this tournament. They have quality and cohesion but they lack a certain je ne sais quoi, or its Italian equivalent. If they can take the Belgians, some serous re-assessment of their possibilities will be required.’ They did impressively beat Belgium and I have reassessed them: for me, Italy has been the best team in the tournament, so far and I fully expect them to beat Spain
SPAIN: The prediction that this Spain team lacks firing power has proved correct. Moreover, their performances in the tournament have, for the most part, been underwhelming. Switzerland had them on the ropes only to let them off the hook in the penalty shoot-out. The names and the faces have the familiarity but the qualities that have made the Spain of old such a footballing force seem to be lacking.
It’s hard to see beyond the likelihood of it being an England v Italy Final. If that comes about, it will be a Final between the 2 teams who have adopted the most professional approach to the tournament and not allowed the occasion to deflect them from the blueprint set out for them by their coaches.
Making a small fortune through gambling is easy; start with a large one.
Getting only 2 out of the 4 in the Quarters and, with my tournament bet on Belgium going West, I am now £9.40 in the red. However, my bet on England getting to The Final is looking strong. As I’ve got England covered, I am not betting on the England v Denmark but have shoved £10 on Italy to best Spain.