France are dripping with quality players and should take all the beating at Euro 2016
BETTING TIP: France to win Euro 2016 @ 3/1 with bet365
Twenty-four teams will line up at the start of Euro 2016 and several will feel they have the ability in their ranks to be celebrating in Saint-Denis on 10 July when the final is played.
Leicester City’s amazing Premier League season illustrates that it’s dangerous to write off teams too readily, while we should also recall the Greek success at Euro 2004, which owed plenty to defensive organisation and pragmatism.
It should also be borne in mind that this is a cup competition where teams can succeed and fail by the thinnest of margins, with England finding it to their cost at the 2014 World Cup despite having a decent squad in Brazil.
Germany are the favourites although this is possibly more of a default setting than a nod to their actual chances of success. They were impressive when winning the World Cup but qualifying for this tournament was a different story.
Die Mannschaft only edged out Poland to land top spot, with the Republic of Ireland and the Poles inflicting defeat on a team who are set to miss Bastian Schweinsteiger this summer, while the absence of Philipp Lahm should also not be underestimated.
Spain are a backable price on first glance, although they look like a team who are potentially short of goals and La Roja’s group includes Czech Republic, Turkey and Croatia, all of whom can present problems to a team who were tactically exposed at the World Cup themselves.
Indeed, you can pick holes in all the favourites for Euro 2016. England look vulnerable defensively despite a strong qualifying record while this is a team in transition and will be the first tournament proper for Harry Kane, Dele Alli, Chris Smalling, Eric Dier, Jamie Vardy and potentially Danny Drinkwater.
Belgium could be interesting if Kevin de Bruyne is fit to take his place in the team, while Italy under Antonio Conte could go deep in this tournament.
However, our overriding conclusion when it comes to placing a Euro 2016 outright bet is FRANCE.
France have home advantage and they couldn’t have cherry-picked easier group opponents in Albania, Switzerland and Romania.
Take a look at the French squad and you see strength in all departments, most notably the midfield area where N’Golo Kante and Dimitri Payet join up with the likes of Paul Pogba, Blaise Matuidi and Yohan Cabaye.
It could be a tournament where Anthony Martial rises to the fore and manager Didier Deschamps has reserved special praise for the twenty-year-old who has endured a tough but promising season at Manchester United.
Patrice Evra remains an evergreen operator at full-back, with Raphael Varane and Laurent Koscielny a formidable central defensive partnership and we’re happy to side with the hosts in this tournament.
Being in Group A also has an advantage as the winner goes through to play the third-placed team in C, D and E. The winner of this match would then play a last eight game against a runner-up from group B or F.
Therefore, providing France don’t fluff their lines at the group stage, it might not be until the semi-final stage that they face a big gun in the form of Germany, Italy or Belgium.