Just one year late
The UEFA European Football Championships, otherwise known as the Euros, have gathered together the best of the best in European soccer for more than 60 years. In that time, the international tournament has seen stunning goals, incredible team performances, and ten different winners from across the continent.
the Euros are back with a bang
In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic left soccer fans bitterly disappointed. Usually held every four years, the tournament failed to take place for the first time since its launch in 1960. However, with vaccines rolling out and sports events now safe to resume, the Euros are back with a bang this year.
EURO 2020, which will be held in cities across Europe, kicks off this Friday with an opening match between Italy and Turkey. The event organizers took to Twitter to ask fans their predictions for the big game:
In the build-up to the opening ceremony, sportsbooks have been busy weighing up the odds for each of the competing 24 teams. As we approach kickoff, bettors in the US and across the rest of the world have the chance to wager on the favorites or take a punt on an outside shot.
VegasSlotsOnline News has taken a look at the odds of the US’s top sportsbooks to see which teams have made it into the top five.
Who is providing odds?
Although the Euros happen on the other side of the Atlantic, all of the US’s top sportsbooks have provided odds on the soccer tournament. Of course, the betting options depend on each state’s current legal stance on gambling and which operators are available.
DraftKings, FanDuel, PointsBet, William Hill, and BetMGM are all offering wagers on individual games throughout the tournament, in addition to outright bets on the Euros winner.
The top five to take the win
It’s really no surprise that sportsbooks have favored France to take victory in the tournament. This talented French team dominated the last major international soccer tournament in Russia, defeating Croatia 4-2 to claim the country’s second FIFA World Cup in 2018.
The French team’s official Twitter page on Friday showed the players working hard in training camp:
France’s star-studded team includes Kylian Mbappé, arguably the finest player in the world right now and unquestionably one of the best. Meanwhile, experienced manager Didier Deschamps evidently knows how to secure victory, having won the French League title multiple times – not to mention the World Cup, of course.
DraftKings has them at +460
As a result, all major sportsbooks have backed France to win the tournament. FanDuel has priced the team at +470, while DraftKings has them at +460, and BetMGM slightly shorter at +400.
England make it into the second spot with the majority of sportsbooks thanks to a young team of promising players. The official England Twitter page posted images of the full squad on Friday:
If you ignore the fact that the country hasn’t won a major soccer tournament since 1966, England’s chances seem high this year. For the first time in a long time, the Three Lions seem to be working together on and off the field.
There’s also plenty of talent for manager Gareth Southgate to choose from, mainly nurtured in the competitive English Premier League. Striker Harry Kane earned top scorer in the league this year, while young midfielders Jack Grealish, Phil Foden, and Mason Mount have all shown their class throughout the season.
Unibet, Pointsbet, and William Hill have all priced England at odds of +600. Meanwhile, BetMGM has the team at longer odds of +750.
Belgium come in third in the sportsbook odds, despite never having won a major competition. On paper, the nation has one of the best squads in the tournament. With talent to rival any of the favorites, the team has secured a favorable group in the first stage of the competition.
The official EURO 2020 Twitter page released images of the Belgians training on Thursday this week:
Under the guidance of Roberto Martinez, fans are expecting big things from Belgian stars Romelu Lukaku and Kevin De Bruyne. Both are coming to the tournament in fine form after securing league titles with their respective clubs.
both Belgium and England have a 14% chance of securing the win
According to US-based sports technology company Gracenote, Belgium have high chances of taking home the trophy. Research found that both Belgium and England have a 14% chance of securing the win, while France came in at 12%, followed by Spain in third place with 10%.
PointsBet has priced Belgium at +700 to win EURO 2020, while DraftKings has them at +750, and William Hill shorter at +600.
Italy has provided some of the greatest players in soccer history, from Roberto Baggio to Francesco Totti. While its team today might not boast as many stars as it has in the past, it still contains many world-class athletes at the height of their game. Overall, the majority of sportsbooks have labeled the Italians fourth-likely to take the win.
In a tweet on Thursday, the official EURO 2020 page posted images of Italy manager Roberto Mancini leading a training session:
For the first time since 1958, Italy failed to qualify for the World Cup in 2018. However, with Mancini leading the way, the country has returned to top form as one of the pre-Euros favorites. Italy will head to Rome to take on Turkey in the competition’s opening game off the back of a 27-game unbeaten run.
Italy are in Group A for the competition’s first stage, meaning they will face Turkey, Wales, and Switzerland to qualify for the knockouts. In comparison to other groups, they are certainly one of the easier rides.
Although there is some disagreement among sportsbooks over Italy’s placing in the top four, DraftKings and William Hill both have the team behind Belgium at +800, while Unibet has them slightly shorter at +750.
With multiple Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo captaining the team, it would be foolish to count Portugal out for EURO 2020. The soccer superstar may be in the twilight of his career at 36, but he almost singlehandedly sealed the win for Portugal in the 2016 competition.
A video posted to the Portugal team’s official Twitter page on Friday showed the players’ training pitch:
Manchester United midfielder Bruno Fernandes is chief among those who can help Ronaldo towards a second consecutive Euros win. Demonstrating his impact on the team, Fernandes scored two in Portugal’s warm-up win over Israel in the build-up to the competition. He also linked up with Ronaldo to secure an assist in the 4-0 win.
+800 with DraftKings, BetMGM, and William Hill
PointsBet traders have priced Portugal at +900 to win the competition. The The DraftKings, BetMGM, and William Hill sportsbooks have chosen to go slightly shorter at +800.