The round of 16 in this year’s EURO championships produced some great matches and some shocking results. EURO 2016 champions Portugal and the 2018 World Cup winners France were both knocked out before reaching the quarter-finals. Meanwhile, Switzerland and the Czech Republic both produced results against France and the Netherlands to move on to the next round, respectively. TGH ranks the last eight nations left in the EUROs and who has the best chance of winning it all.
8. Czech Republic
The Czech’s beat Scotland and tied Croatia in their group to earn a place in the round of 16. They were able to beat the Dutch 2-0 on Sunday as the Czech’s ran away with it after a Matthijs de Ligt handball in the second half. Patrik Schick has four goals for his nation and one of them will be the goal of the tournament. Their next match is against defensive powerhouse Denmark and will be looking for some more magic to move on.
Prediction: Quarter-final loss
Switzerland produced the match of the tournament when they beat France in penalties on Monday. They qualified for the last 16 on matchday three when they beat Turkey 3-1. Haris Seferovic has scored three in the last two matches, including two against France. Xherdan Shaqiri scored two against Turkey and looks like the player we remember from the last EUROs. They have a tall task in facing Spain in the next round and will look to duplicate their result they had against France.
Prediction: Swiss luck runs out next round
Ukraine pulled off another upset in the round of 16 when it took down Sweden in extra-time. They went up a man thanks to a careless tackle by Sweden’s Marcus Danielson in the 98′ minute and scored the winner in the last minute. Ukraine’s last and only appearance in a knockout round came in the 2006 World Cup. They advanced as the third-placed team in Group C, only beating North Macedonia. Oleksandr Zinchenko looks like a born leader and the Ukraine boss praised his “heroes” after Tuesday’s win. Their focus turns to a tough clash with England in the quarter-finals.
Prediction: A good run ends in the quarter-finals
What a turnaround after the absolute worst way to start any competition. Christian Eriksen collapsed on the pitch in the first-half in the 1-0 loss to Finland. They played well against a Belgium side who showed their class to win in the end, and then scored eight goals combined against Russia and then Wales in the round of 16. Kasper Dolberg scored two against Wales and will have a tough task against the strong, physical defense of Czech Republic. Expected the Danes to keep dancing this summer.
Prediction: Semi-final clash with England
Spain opened this tournament with two scoreless draws before pouring it on against Slovakia and Croatia winning 5-0 and 5-3, respectively. Questions will be asked about the backline after surrendering three goals and a horrid own goal to Croatia. Álvaro Morato finally scored for Spain, the winning goal in extra-time. Luis Enrqiue will surely rotate the squad against the Swiss and should expect to move on.
Prediction: On to the semis
England finally scored two goals in a match when they beat Germany 2-0 on Monday to move onto the quarter-finals. Raheem Sterling has scored three for the three lions and has provided the attacking spark for England for their four matches. Southgate has plenty of attacking options to rotate the squad and should be looking to some more creative players in their next match.
Prediction: Clear path to the final?
All Belgium needed was a Thorgan Hazard wonderstrike to move on against the former champions Portugal. They have won all their matches this summer and have only conceded once against Denmark. Kevin de Bruyne and Eden Hazard are both doubts to play in the next round which would be a huge blow to Belgium. They will face Italy next, who have been even stronger defensively, so getting back key players will make or break Belgium.
Prediction: Golden generation’s last dance ends early
Italy have been this tournament’s best side. They have won all their matches and conceded only once to Austria in the round of 16. Roberto Mancini has this team playing their best soccer ever and does not look like slowing down. Ciro Immobile has been rampant up top for the Italians and the choice between Marco Veratti and Mauel Locatelli has been a tough one for the manager. Leonardo Bonnucci and Gianluigi Donarumma have been the leaders for this team and look to go on in this tournament.
Prediction: The Azzurri keep winning