European Championship Group E - Teams & Odds Analysis
European Championship Group E - Spain
The team value is around 770m, and they rank in 6th place in FIFA ranking. Heavy favourites to qualify and also to win the group, of course, European Championship Group E.
But, the odds to win the tournament are around 9, and by the odds, they are 5th favourite.
2010 WC champions, but dropped out already in the group stage in the next tournament, small recover in 2018 and reached to the round of 16.
2008 and 2012 Euros winner, but dropped out in the round of 16 during the last competition.
Gone are the glory days when maestros like Xavi and Iniesta orchestrated the midfield.
As a long time Spain fan, checking the potential squad makes me sad indeed. I understand why Spain isn't a heavy favourite before the big competitions anymore.
On the bright side, there's some hope and great potential breakout candidates coming to the stage already.
Of course, the core players are all from top leagues as always, but they really lack these brightest stars, superstars and leaders who could carry the team independently.
But, as I said, I hope we can see some great potential for the future and legends are made exactly in the competitions like this.
Goalkeepers - Kepa from Chelsea and de Gea from Manu have lost their number 1 position in their home clubs. In the three last games, Unai Simon has been in a goal for Spain.
Only 23 years old but already in his second season as the main goalkeeper for Athletic Bilbao. Kepa's situation is especially sad as he was the future of this team at some point but has only 6 games this season.
At the same time, I hope that Unai Simon will prove himself in the European Championship Group E and playoffs.
Defenders - With 180 games and 23 goals, Sergio Ramos should be the leader in the defence but is struggling with injuries lately. Jordi Alba has 72 games and 8 goals and should be the leader in the team also.
Jesus Navas also plays in the Spain La Liga and has 46 games and 5 goals, but is already 35 years old, as also Sergio Ramos. Alba is 32, so all these 3 key players should be replaced for the next big tournament.
Dani Carvajal from Real Madrid is the 4th key defender at the moment, but he has missed basically half of the season with an injury.
Diego Llorente from Leeds and Inigo Martinez from Athletic Bilbao has been used 23 times combined. Sergi Roberto from Barcelona should start on the right side of the defence.
Hector Bellerin from Arsenal is competing with him. Eric Garcia from Manchester City is one for the future. 7 games for Spain so far, but as he is only 20 years old, he is a rotation player in Premier League.
Sergio Requilon has found himself enjoying the football and playing as a starter for Spurs, which is good news.
Also, Pau Torres from Villarreal has been close to being a top talent in the Spanish La Liga and will earn a place in a stronger club during the summer for sure.
A lot of players from top leagues and clubs, but Ramos and Carvajal's injuries are a red flag for sure.
Midfielders - Why is not Brahim Diaz in the squads? I don't know. Debut season in Serie A for AC Milan and 3 goals so far. An important player for the team 3rd in the league at the moment.
The most experienced midfielder is Sergio Busquets, 122 games, 2 goals and 32 years old. For me, his time should be over as he is 95% of the times the slowest player on the field, referees included.
Koke from Athletico Madrid and Thiago from Liverpool are the next most experienced players. Both have had decent seasons for their clubs and Thiago is finding his confidence again.
Sergio Canales have 8 goals this season for Real Betis. Rodri and Fabian are both main team players for Manchester City and Napoli. Neither of them is big goal threats.
Now it's getting interesting for me. Pedri is only 18 years old but has 36 games for Barcelona this season.
Marcos Llorente has only 4 games for Spain, but what a season he has for Athletico Madrid. 12 goals from midfield and pushing Real and Barcelona until the last game of the season.
Amazing player this season and it will be fun to watch him and Dani Olmo from Leipzig. Dani is 23 years old and in his second season in the Bundesliga. 32 games and 5 goals this season and all three should be the future of Spain.
Attackers - Once again, I have to start with the injury news. Ansu Fati, 18 years old forward from Barcelona, has been out since November.
7 goals in 24 games last season while being only 17 years old. 4 goals in 7 games this season and then out for the rest of the season.
Alvaro Morata is the 2nd best goal scorer after Ramos, who takes penalties for the team. 19 goals in 39 games and for Juventus 9 goals this season.
Gerard Moreno from Villarreal has scored in every 2nd game for Spain, statistically. 21 goals this season and need to step up big time.
Ferran Torres is only 21 years old but has had a strong season for Manchester City with 4 goals in 21 games. The 'strongman' Adama Traore plays for Wolves in Premier League and has scored twice this season.
I can understand why they are not considered as the top 3 favourites to lift the trophy in the summer. A lot of injury worries, and the core players are on the wrong side of the 30.
Despite this, there's already some younger potential future stars stepping up, and everything except semi-finals for me would be a big disappointment.
European Championship Group E - Sweden
Swedens squad value is 182m. FIFA ranking position is 18, and they are third based on the odds in European Championship Group E.
In the 2018 World Cup, they reached to quarterfinals and lost against England, beat Switzerland in the round of 16. In their previous Euros, they have been staying the group stage.
In 2016 they were in the same group as Italy, Belgium and Ireland. In 2012 only two teams qualified from the group stages, and they were behind England and France.
King Zlatan is back on the national team. In every line, the Sweden team has players from top leagues, but there's also a lot of players from Sweden, Russian and Danish leagues.
Goalkeepers - The most experienced goalkeeper is, of course, Robin Olsen. He has played in Italy Serie A, but at the moment is Everton backup goalkeeper.
Kristoffer Nordfeldt from Cenclerbirligi (Turkey) and Karl-Johan Johnsson from Copenhagen (Denmark) have been used in their recent games.
Defenders - Mikael Lustig and Andreas Granqvist are the most experienced defenders in the team 88 and 89 games.
Both are playing in Sweden now and are 34 and 36 years old.
In this tournament, players like Ludwig Augustinsson (Werder Bremen), Victor Lindelöf (Manu), Emil Kraft (Newcastle) and Joakim Nilsson (Arminia Bielefeld) have to carry the team. All mentioned players are getting game time in the top leagues, and Lindelöf should become the main man in the defence.
Midfielders - Victor Claesson has 9 goals for the team and plays in Russia for Krasnodar.
They have a nice trio from Italy Serie A: Albin Ekdal has been 3 last seasons as the starter for Sampdoria. Mattias Svandberg plays for Bologna and is 22 years with 5 goals this season.
The third season in Serie A as the main team player. Raising star Dejan Kulusevski had a 10 goal season in Serie A in Parma while being 20 years old. Juventus picked him up, and this season, he has scored 4 times in 33 games.
Emil Forsberg from Leipzig has been one of the best creative midfielders in the German Bundesliga for years.
Robin Quaison plays in the same league for Mainz and has managed to score 17 times during the last two seasons.
A very nice midfield consisting of players with experience and some young guns from top leagues.
Attackers - John Guidetti might get a call back to the team, 3 goals in 29 games and plays for Alaves.
Zlatan back in the team is, of course, excellent news. 39 years old but still going strong in Italy for AC Milan with 15 goals in 19 games. 62 goals in 118 games for Sweden.
Aleksander Isak is 21 years old Real Sociedad striker who have 14 goals so far in 32 games this season. 6 goals already for Sweden, and maybe can overcome Zlatan's goal tallie?
By the odds, they are equal with Poland to qualify from European Championship Group E.
I believe that they can achieve this ahead of Slovakia. Poland could be too much for them, but it would be amazing to see Robert Lewandowski and Zlatan Ibrahimovic going against each other.
European Championship Group E - Poland
Poland squad value is 245m, but players like Robert Lewandowski and Wojciech Szczesny are doing big favours for this value. They are slightly behind Sweden in the FIFA rankings, 21st position.
In their last World Cup final tournament, they were left in the group stage behind Colombia, Japan and Senegal. In the 2016 Euros final tournament, they reached to quarterfinals and why not reach so far this time also?
Going through from the European Championship Group E is a minimum target.
Poland can set up a team from top leagues players only. That's a good sign. They have a variety of top goalkeepers and Robert Lewandowski upfront.
Three players with more than 14 goals for the national team and some guys in good form for their home teams.
Goalkeepers - There are not many teams with 3 goalkeepers in the squad who are all playing in top leagues as the starters.
Lukasz Fabianski is playing in West Ham and has played in Premier League as a starter since 2014.
Wojciech Szczesny is playing in Juventus at the moment and has been Serie A and Premier League level goalkeeper since 2010.
Lukasz Skorupski has been the main goalkeeper for Bologna in Serie A for the last 3 seasons.
Defenders - They have 6 defenders from the top leagues. Jan Bednarek has been an integral part of the defence for Southampton for the past 3 seasons.
Bartosz Bereszynski plays for Sampdoria for the last 5 seasons. Pawel Dawidowicz is having his second season in Serie A for Verona.
Legendary Kamil Klik is now playing in Benevento, but before this was a key defender for Monaco for 4 seasons. Arkadiusz Reca has been a key defender in Serie A for Spal and Crotone.
Sebastian Walukiewicz is having his second season for Cagliari despite being only 21 years old.
Midfielders - Two key midfielders are both from Italy Serie A. Piotr Zielinski has been a starter in Serie A since he was 19 years old. He is having a superb season in Napoli with 8 goals in 34 games.
Karol Linetty is playing for Torino this season. Before this, he was a starter for Sampdoria for 4 seasons.
I could say that Mateusz Klich is having a breakout season while being 30 years old. Debut season in Premier League for Leeds and has been in good form with 3 goals in 34 games. Grzegorz Krychowiak plays for Lokomotiv this season but was in Sevilla, PSG and West Bromwich in the top leagues for several seasons.
For the future, there's Kamil Jozwiak from Derby County, Jakub Moder from Brighton and Przemyslaw Placheta from Norwich.
Attackers - Robert Lewandowski with 66 goals in 118 games, is probably the best striker in the game at the moment. I mean, 39 goals for Bayern Munich this season and his second 30 plus goals season in a row.
Arkadiusz Milik was superb for Napoli in 4 seasons but moved to Marseilles for this season and has 5 goals in 13 games.
Krzysztof Piatek had some good seasons in Serie A for Genoa and AC Milan, but this season is playing in Hertha Berlin and has scored 7 goals in 32 games this season in Germany.
Going through from the European Championship Group E is a minimum target.
A very strong mix in the team. Experienced goalkeepers and top striker option. All core players are from top leagues and starters in their teams. There's some good potential in regard to younger players coming up, and for some reason, I believe that this team can repeat their playoff run.
European Championship Group E - Slovakia
With a squad value of around 110m and FIFA ranking of 36th place, they are the outsiders in the European Championship Group E. Odds to qualify are around 2.3, so there can be some surprises.
The last time they played in WC final tournament was in 2010. In the previous European Championship, they finished the tournament in the round of 16.
At first sight, the team lacks a consistent and quality striker, and the strongest part of the potential squad is midfield.
Defender Milan Skriniar and midfielder Marek Hamsik are basically 70% of the squad value.
This shows the quality of the squad depth, or in this case, the lack of depth.
Goalkeepers - Goalkeeper Martin Dubravka has been in England Premier league and Newcastle for the last 4 seasons. He was the main goalkeeper until this season - 10 games.
Marek Rodak was the main goalkeeper for Fulham in Championship winning season but has only one game this season in Premier League.
Dusan Kuciak from Lechia Gdansk has been the starting goalkeeper in their last 2 games.
Defenders - Milan Skriniar, as mentioned before, is the heart and soul of this team. He has been the main centre back for Inter Milan for the last four seasons and is now the Serie A champion. 3 goals this season.
Peter Pekarik is 2nd player who plays in the higher league, the German Bundesliga. Hertha Berlin defender has been in the league since the 2013 season.
Martin Valjent is playing for Mallorca in Spain 2nd division. In the 2019 season, he got 36 games in the Spain La Liga.
The rest of the candidates are mostly playing Poland, Slovakia, Romania and Czech leagues.
Midfielders - A national hero Marek Hamsik was the key midfielder in Italy Serie A for Napoli for over ten seasons. Currently plays in Goteborg in Sweden.
34 years old Juraj Kucka plays for Parma in Serie A and had a good season with 7 goals. Stanislav Lobotka plays for Napoli as a rotation player, the second season for him in Serie A after moving from Celta Vigo.
Laszlo Benes is playing for Augsburg, joined the team from Borussia Monchengladbach. Ondrej Duda also plays in Germany for FC Koln. 7 goals in 30 games and has been a good scorer from midfield in Bundesliga.
Attackers - No attackers in the highest leagues. Michal Duris plays for Omonia in the Cyprus league. 2 goals in 24 games isn't something to be afraid of for Poland and Sweden.
Robert Bozenik is a promising youngster from Feyenoord but has only 1 goal so far in 13 games. 21 years old and should give him some time.
Ivan Schranz plays for Jablonec in the Czech league, and David Strelec plays in the local league.
If they get through from the European Championship Group E, it should be considered as a successful competition already.
In their international games during the last 12 months, there have been two decent results. A win against Russia and Scotland.
Not the playoff-worthy results, but maybe can squeeze out a point in the group stage.
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