Teams Likely to Cause an “Upset” at the UEFA Euro 2020
After a one-year delay due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the UEFA European Championships is returning tonight. Football fans around the world have been looking forward to an international tournament for a while now.
The quality and prowess of the Euros participants make this competition volatile in nature. Needless to say, every edition of this tournament provides us with unprecedented results and delights. And so, with the thrill underway in a few hours, we are taking a look at the teams poised to create the biggest upsets.
Guided by Şenol Güneş, one of the lead architects of Turkey's 2002 World Cup success, the current Turkey squad is in a pole position to emulate that kind of form. With skipper Burak Yılmaz and Yusuf Yazıcı returning from Ligue 1 success in red hot form and imaginative playmaker Hakan Çalhanoğlu having another successful campaign at Italy with AC Milan, Turkey certainly doesn't lack individual brilliance.
With up-and-coming talents Çağlar Söyüncü, Merih Demiral, Cengiz Ünder and more, Turkey boasts one of their most exciting squads in years and will be delighted to cause upsets like the 4-2 win against the Netherlands in late March.
Tonight, in the opening match of the tournament at 1 AM Bangladesh time, they face the Azzurris – Italy.
Coached by national hero Andriy Shevchenko, Ukraine is definitely a team to watch out for. Unlike other countries on this list, Ukraine doesn't hold back and play a close-quartered defensive line rather opting for an all-out attacking style.
Ukraine's bold playing style turned heads during the qualifiers and even put the likes of Portugal to the sword. The team makes up its lack of individual brilliance with an organised game plan. With most of the players in the squad coming from mainly two teams (Shakhtar Donetsk and Dynamo Kyiv), the understanding is telepathic. And for some reason, veteran forward Andriy Yarmolenko turns into discount Ronaldo whenever he puts on the national team's shirt.
The current Czech Republic is surely not one of their bests (remember the 2004 side?), but they are arriving at the championship with a tight-knit defense and an energetic midfield with Jakub Jankto and Premier League ace Tomas Soucek.
Czechia also has an impressive set-piece record with most of their goals in qualifying stages coming from set-pieces. A defensive squad with such a record is certainly menacing and prone to causing problems, especially from dead ball situations. The team's front line will be led by Adam Hložek, an 18-year-old striker who is being eyed by clubs across Europe and might be a breakout star. With 15 goals in 19 appearances for Sparta Prague this season, and a complete set of goal poacher skills, he is surely one to watch out for and might become their salvation.
Arguably one of the greatest to play the modern game, Robert Lewandowski returns to the Euros in the form of his life and will be looking to produce a similar result to that of Cristiano Ronaldo's in Euro 2016.
Lewandowski has been prolific for his home nation as he is with Bayern, with 66 goals in 118 appearances, and has always been influential. Arriving at the twilight years of his career, he will be eager to win an international trophy with his country. Apart from Lewandowski, Poland boasts talented players like Krzysztof Piątek, Piotr Zieliński and a fortified backline with veteran goalkeeper Wojciech Szczęsny and defender Kamil Glik. All in all, Poland has a quality squad and is looking forward to a successful campaign.