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9/2 shots England can fire their way to European glory

15 Jun | BY Betway | MIN READ TIME |
9/2 shots England can fire their way to European glory

Armed with a sublime strike-force and solid defence, Southgate has the tools to take his side all the way in the Czech Republic

Over the years few teams have disappointed on an international level quite like England. From the ‘wally with the brolly’ to ‘calamitous David James’, the national side has suffered badly from intense media criticism and an empty trophy cabinet.

As the next generation of English footballers make their way to the Czech Republic for the European under 21’s tournament, fans may be excused for feeling they are simply acting as sacrificial lambs for more criticism and mockery. But maybe not this time…

With nine wins and one draw, England easily boast the best record in qualifying for the competition, and backed this up with friendly victories over Portugal and tournament favourites Germany.

The majority of this success has been attributed to England’s striking riches. With 46 Premier League goals between them this season, Harry Kane, Saido Berahino and Danny Ings indisputably form the events most deadly attack.

England also have bite to go along with their bark, boasting the best defensive record in the continent, conceding just four goals in qualifying. This deadly combination of flair and steel means Southgate’s men start as justifiable 9/2 second favourites.

The path to the final is tricky, but negotiable. Grouped with Italy, Portugal, and Sweden, there are definite dangers to look out for. Sweden are the potential Group B whipping boys after narrowly scraping their way through to this stage.

Italy are notoriously robust at the back, with Palermo striker Andrea Belotti providing their biggest threat up front. The 21 year old scored 6 goals in qualifying.

Portugal will arguably provide England biggest group stage test. Rui Jorge’s men have won 10 matches in a row and contain a squad packed with exiting prospects.

England will take heart from their recent friendly victory over the Portuguese however, and have more than enough quality to win all three of their group stage matches.

Group A looks less competitive, with the Germans in a different league to Denmark, Serbia, and hosts Czech Republic. Few would be surprised if the tournament favourites topped the group.

England would likely play Denmark in the semi finals before meeting Germany in the final. If this did come to fruition then Southgate’s men would have a great shot at an upset against the 2009 winners.

Winning their last meeting by three goals to two, England can expose Germany’s relatively weak back line with their stellar attack. Joachim Low’s decision to only call up Mario Gotze and Shkodran Mustafi, of those eligible to play for the under 21’s, could backfire in front of his eyes when they face their toughest test.

This competition undoubtedly represents the best chance in recent years for faith in English football to be restored.

9/2 – England to win the U21 European Championships

U21 European Championship betting

READ Darren Lewis: My player’s to watch at the U21 Euros

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