On The Ball
On The Ball

Episode · 1 year ago

Euro 2020(2021) Group D Preview | Croatia, Czech Republic, England, Scotland


I run through an in-depth Euro 2020 Group D Preview analysing the form and key players of each side, as well as predicting the 6 results from the group games.


All Right, Group D is a very, very hectic one. Obviously rapping one of the teams here, Scotland. However, I will try and remain objective in my judgment of each team. Well, right, Croatia, Zech Republic, England and Scotland. Look, it's not it's not a gun group, like there's not a lot of great sites in there, but it's going to be a competitive group. All four teams are pretty handy on their day. So it's going to be one of the more talked about groups due to England's, you know, rise in the last couple tournaments. Obviously everyone knows their fourth run, fourth place run at the two thousand and Eighteen World Cup. So a lot of the medium press will be focused on Group D. So we're going to hear a lot about it. So let's get into a preview of it. Firstly, we will be looking at the Croatian team, once again playing in the famous red and white checkers, one of the most loved. will not most loved, but everyone got behind them, didn't they? Well, everyone was behind England, but everyone was also bhying Croatia at the same time to underdog stories from the two thousand and Eighteen World Cup. Obviously made the finals, I'm sure everyone knows listening, lost out to a great France team, but that's nothing to be ashamed of. In previous international tournaments they made the round of sixteen in two thousand and sixteen euros and the group stages in fourteen and two thousand and twelve World Cup in euros respectively. In the last ten competitive games, however, they've not been the same team that made the World Cup final. They're only guarded twelve points in their last ten, with a strength of schedule that's not even that's ridiculous. Like it's harder than most, but it's nothing like Ukraine faced in group seed. But in terms of their goal difference, they've scored sixteen, not bad at all. However, they have conceded eighteen goals, and this is where the problems lie. Their defense from what it was at the World Cup, it's definitely changed. Thinking back to their World Cup, I know they had Veta at center back. He's definitely aged and trying to remember what that centerback's name is. Who Will the bandage on his head? And I forgotten his name, but yeah, he was definitely not the youngest. Not a spring chicken at the two thousand and Eighteen World Cup. So yeah, there's definitely a lot of instability in the back line. However, then midfield and forward line still remains extremely dangerous, with two of the key players being a Mateo combat hitch and Matsio rolls a bitch, Matteo Bros a bitch. How I forgotten his first name, who knows, but at this stage, at forty at night, I will be carrying on. Matteo covid titch is an absolute all around jet. We see him and plays Trade for Champions League winners Chelsea. He was right up there in passes into the final third across you're top five leagues. Is Right up there, and progressive passes in general, almost in the top ten in the Europe for that. And he's also a very accomplished dribbler, up being in the top twenty five in Europe's top five leagues in tribal percentage. So when he takes on a man he very rarely loses, and that is something that crash will definitely need in these World Cup games, especially with England, who are likely going to be pressing as soon as they lose the ball as a really, really competent side. The England are, so covid Chiche is going to be huge in that midfield. Obviously, in the last World Cup it was a lot more focus on modrich and racquetage, and coaches probably got a step up a little bit this year and kind of takeover. Is someone who's in his prime compared to those two ato mentioned players, and Braso Itch is the same. He's had another really, really good season for intire see, as he has for the last three or four years, and he is someone else who needs to con he was good in two thousand and eighteen, so he just needs to continue that and krasia might be a chance to get out of this group. Moving forward. They've got CRAMERRICH.

No longer have Benz who kitch leading the line. It will be Andre Kramerich of Hoffenheim fame. I do believe he had a pretty good year and his main strength is firing shots off a goal as is for most strike as. He was ranked twelve in Europe's top top five leagues for shots on target per ninety, so very efficient with his shot lots and he us also likes to get a lot off. So he's going to be a danger for all opposition defenders. In terms of people who made team of the seasons, they didn't actually have that many. To be honest. They're only one was, I believe, a Croatian native who plays in the Creatian League. So they didn't have too many guys playing absolute stelly years and you'd have to say similar to the likes of Denmark, they are probably an aging list in terms of they're probably peaked in two thousand and sixteen and eighteen and now their players is definitely pass their prime and they probably don't have the youth of some of the other nations. I know they've got untap ravage and some of the other exciting young guns, but he's not, you know, going to be able to score all the goals for a Croatia, so that's something that they're going to have to deal with. You know, some of the players are going to have to probably one black the clock to two or three years ago when they were at their peak, if krasia are to get out of this group. So they're going to be an interesting team to watch. It's going to be interesting to see how their manager, who was the self group proclaimed second best in the world, manages the side and all, whether they rest on their laurels of two thousand and eighteen and just happy to go out of the group stage here. Because in this group, although they are probably the second favorite to get out behind England, the third and fourth contenders are definitely not anyone to overlook, and they will. If they are taken lightly, they'll definitely cools an upset. So next day we've got the check republic. They got sixteen points from their last ten games. Scored sixteen goals, ten conceded, so pretty solid in both of those aspects of the game. They didn't make that two thousand and Eighteen World Cup or the twenty fourteen World Cup, but they made didn't get out of the group stage of the twenty sixteen years either. However, their team has transformed a little bit since then. They also made the quarter finals of the two thousand and twelve year. Oh, so that as a nation they do have pedigree. However, it's a very different rothst to what it was in two thousand and twelve and their star player, as I'm sure you are all though, when you think of check a republic football at the moment, you think of Thomas Sue check, the absolute star from West Ham made the Premier League team the season. Absolute Gun Center midfielder, does it all for his club side, West Ham. He's a big, tall specimen, big Lanky, tough to play on. Yeah, just unusual physical matchup and he's also very good technically as well. He's being rumored to have a just before we get into the rest of this preview, obviously this is being filmed a little bit later. If you're watching, as I'm in Onesi and not my scholing kid, but I'll explain that in a second. Just before we get into it quickly, just want to say thoughts and prayers, I would the Ericson family. I know he's been announced stable and all good, but was obviously a very terrifying thing to watch last night. I was very scared watching him myself. Could only imagine what it was like for his family and friends. So great to hear that he's okay. Hopefully you can return back, but obviously health's most important thing, so hoping he can get back to full health. And Yeah, just thought I'd quickly mentioned that fell. Yeah, felt it was a bit silly to not mention that before we got into it, because I was obviously the biggest us in soccer overnight. Hello, it is me hang wish once again, but today I am here about five days later than I was last time. So just a quick update. We had a Ford a power outage in Melbourne due to not everyone had the power edge but due to some storm. So a lot of Melbourne...

...houses went down, but thankfully we're all healthy and well. But back here again to finish off this group deep preview. I know it's pretty loud last minute when I'm recording this. It's an hour and a half till the Group D game starts, so hopefully it's still good content. But well, my last point I was to him, I was Thomas Soue check and I was talking about how dominant he's been a year in the premier league, transfer the value of around fifty meal. But that's probably enough said for the Czech Republic. Moving on to England, the favorite to take out this group and one of the favorites for the tournament, and I want a bag out England because you know, it's cool seeing everyone get up in about but I do have to say I think they are being a little bit overrated. I just think when you compare them to the like the France, Portugal, Belgian. I just don't think they are that level yet. Personally. Yes, they had a dream run to the semi finals last World Cup when no one was expecting it, but I still think they are a few tournaments away from being a true title contender. And also their draw really doesn't help them out because if they do win this group, they will play the winner the runner up of Group F, which is likely going to be whoever comes second out of France or Portugal. So around a sixteen eggs is, in my opinion, the most likely outcome for England. But we'll talk about them a bit more specifically and then I'll talk about my predictions for this group at the end of the episode. So I won't spoil that. But they've picked up twenty two points out of their last possible thirty. They've had a really tough schedule as well, so they've tested themselves in as some of the best in the world, which is a good thing, and they're scored twenty out of their last ten. Pretty solid return and, more importantly, they've conceded five. So, as they have been throughout the last ten years or so, they've been a really, really solid qualification side and they've once again done it here. I know some of these were nations league games, but now, hopefully they can translate it to the big stage in a major tournament. Their last major tournament, obviously, they came fourth of the two thousand and Eighteen World Cup. Prior to that they were round sixteen in the two thousand and sixteen euros where they lost to Iceland. Failed to make it out of the group stages in two thousand and fourteen World Cup and made it to the two thousand and twelve euros quarterfinals. So England's a tough team to breathe you because out of most of the teams they've probably got one of the hardest starting elevens to predict. I think there's only maybe four or five spots where we're really certain who's going to be playing. The the wing spots some of the hardest to predict. Sancho, grillish, sterling, Rushford even phones in the mix. So statistically, Sancho and greenlish some of their better players are grillish. Statistically, it's just been so dominant in the premier league this year. He's in the top ten four key passes across Europe's top five leagues. He's also up there four passes into the final third and into the penalty box, should I say, and he's right up there in shot creating actions as well, on the top ten for that. And Yeah, he spend a really, really dominant force all year Aston Villa. We saw how important he was a spit in particular when he got injured and they became a completely different side, had no outlet and where it kind of showed how much grilish really was doing behind the scenes. And then Sancho's have another really, really good season. For Dorman. He's in, I think, fifth place across the Europe's top five leagues in passes into the penalty area, which is a really impressive start. Success Successful dribbles per ninety. He's in the top twelve. I think it crossed Europe stopped five leagues for that. And Yeah, human grilis should very similar play statistically, and two of them, England's most dominant, are, you'd have to say, across the top five leagues. However, both of them are actually, you'd have to say, unlikely to start. At this point. We don't know who's going to play, but in my opinion, I just...

...said, they're going to go Rushford and Sterling, which I don't agree with. I actually think it should be Sancho on grelish. I think greenish was also really strong in their friendly so yeah, he's been rumored to be on the bench with it, which is disappointing. Mason Mount is someone who we're almost guaranteed to see starting. However, he's stats have been pretty good this year, similar to grillish and Sancho, similar areas of dominance. It in particular progressive passing in the attacking parts of the field. But yeah, he's a one of south gates favorite so he's likely going to be playing in that midfield three and he's going to be the attacking, most attacking player of those of that three. So grillish and Sancho will be fighting it out for a spot on the wings. You'd have to imagine maybe in a gaming at Scotland or something, they might play to attacking mids and just let Rice or Henderson or whatever do the defensive duties. But I would say for the most part they'll have to defensively minded midfielders, have mount as a bit more of an attacking mid and then they've got the three up front. So those three probably statistically been the most dominant the season, but they've obviously had some really good players. Kane and rush would both made the Premier League team of the season. Trip made the LALIGA team of the season, having a really, really dominant campaign for outlet Toko Madruid. He's obviously one of the many right backs England have and that's going to be a huge headache for Garre Southgate. There's rumors just before the team gets announced tonight that he's going to be named left back instead of Luke Shaw, who him himself has had a really, really impressive season. So that's going to be a huge decision and I think that I think a lot of that decision might come down to Rushford, whether he plays or not, because in my opinion, if rushfould plays you definitely have to play short because they've got such great chemistry on that left hand side. But if you go with Sancho or grilish on the left, then maybe there's a reason to pick trip you're on the left side, but I probably would just be Luke shure. I don't really know why you'd place one out of position when your spoil for choice in pretty much all this positions, I'd probably try and keep it simple. I know it's very stiff when you've got three or four world class right backs, but Luke Shaw there's definitely good enough to be playing in his natural position of left back. So Yeah, England. Look, I do think the pressures ridiculous on this side. I think a lot of media out let's expect them to win, which in my opinion, is just stupid. I think if I had to rank the favorites from one hundred and twenty four, for me they would probably wouldn't even be my top five, part of partly due to draw, but I also just think they're still a little bit raw. Some of the combinations in this national team still need a little bit of time to develop, but it's there's no hiding that this team has insane potential. The likes of Jude Bellingham only seventeen years old. Mason Green would not up the uros this year, but he's going to be a talent for years to come. PHL FODEN's already dominating at such a young age. So yeah, I think people need to tame their expectations. A little bit of England, but it's England at the end of the day. Their expectations will always be very high and they get their campaign off when I'm doing this in an hour and twenty minutes. So very excited to see how they come out of the blocks. And then finally, in Group D we have Scotland, my favorite team in the tournament, being half Scottish. They picked up fourteen points out of their last ten games, which I believe is the second or third lowest return out of all the teams in here. They're one of the lower rank sides in here. They've made it through the playoffs beating I think it was. Who Do we beat in the playoffs? And they might have been Israel. I get confused because there was a playoff semi and then a playoff final. Both were on in penalty shootouts. I do get I am getting a little bit confused. Maybe one was Slovenia or something, but yeah, I'm pretty sure one was definitely is rather as a period there where Scotland played Israel like three times, in check republic three times. Who was one of their group opponents this tournament? They didn't have the...

...easiest of groups, which is a good thing because they're going to be facing tougher opponents than someone who's ranked at their level would normally face in a qualification process. They've only scored twelve goals in the last ten and that is where the issues lie here. They've got some really, really quality players that we all know the likes of. Sorry, I forgot his own cure and tiery. I was about say cure and tripier, but I was getting confused because I was talking about Tripia. For England and they've obviously got Andy Robinson, Liverpool legend. Maybe a bit premature calling him a legend be you know, he's part of that title winning side. So I guess he is a legend. And then mctola a. he's got his hate is, he's got his doubt as but he's a very good, good play managers to find himself in the man united starting eleven more often than not, so he's going to do a job whether he play as part of a backthree or in the midfield. Also got John Gin, but a big in for Scotland in the last few weeks has been cha adams changing his allegiance from England international allegiance to from England to Scotland and he is, I guess, the hope to change that goal scoring record lynden dikes as well. The KEPR strike actually has roots in Australia as well. So Australia, maybe you can get behind the Scottish team as well. However, they have only conceded seven their last ten. So probably expect to see some low scoring, not shitouse ree performances from Scotland, but they're probably going to make the game scrappy. It's probably not going to be one touch classy football, but they will try and grind out wins. They will be playing on a lot of spirit. They haven't made for any of the For all last major tournaments and statistically, none of their players have really had dominant seasons. In terms of my stats that I've looked at. Only Lim Cooper, the leads center back, featured in there and tears actually predicting not to even play. So they're meant. They're meant to be playing grant Hanley, the Norwich Skipper, at the center of that back three or whatever formation they go with. So yeah, not too much in particular to a highlight with Scotland. Obviously they've got some guns in defense and Tierney and Robinson, although they are defenders, are, you know, the natural defenders, they will also have to provide some sort of attacking outlet as very creative players for their club sides as well. Shame they're both in the same position, but you know, one players like left stander back and one plays left back when they play for Scotland. But yeah, it would be interested to see how Scotland. God, they do have two games at home, which is going to be really big for them, I think, and they do also have a bit of a mental edge over the check republic, having beaten them three times in the last, I think, eighteen months it is. So yeah, they're going to they're probably they're not a wild cards when the torn or anything, but they're a bit of a wild card to get out of this group, you'd have to say, with Croatia's poor form, as I mentioned, they've got a recent, good recent history against the Chech Republic, so they're a bit of a dark horse to get out of this one, despite being easily the lowest ranked team out of the four. So highlight. I've previewed all for and I've highlighted each team's strengths and their form going into it. Now let's get into my predictions for those who have missed the first three episodes of Group A. Group be group. See previous I've actually had a cracking start to the match predictions on the euromatch prediction, match predictor, you know game, and I've actually had a pretty good start. I'm in the top two hundred in Australia out of about six thousand, so it's going well. But for this group, first of all tonight's game. England most Croatia out Whenbley. My prediction is going to be to one, to England. Kraa shier definitely have a good team on paper, but their forms not great and I think form is a big thing in this tournament. We already saw it on the first time with Italy and Turkey. Turkey out of form, Italy very inform, and we saw although Turkey have a good team on paid, we sure saw how disconnected they were. And forms definitely a good...

...indicator. It always is. So I'll be going England to one. Just think they'll be too good. Might be look, I feel like a lot of England and especially early in tournaments, they always, you know, it's always a bit heart attack footy. They always say, like you know, I think it was against Tunis you or something when they didn't score till like the eighty nine minute or something. But yeah, I'm expecting them to be creation should. They should, otherwise the city will probably start burning down. Scotland, check republic. Monday nights game, I'm going Scoland one deal, and this is purely because of the home ground advantage. If this was being played at prigue or something, I'd probably go a draw it even check republic's way. But I think the Scottish crowd will be huge for Scotland and I can see them grinding out of one kneel victory match day to for Group D, I have got Croatia, check republic. I've got check republic actually winning this to one. I just yeah, the Croatia Form Line just really worries me. I know they've got some really talented players and may have not necessarily played all of their last ten competitive games, but I think check republic a well drilled unit and I can see them grinding out a win here against Croatia. I think that one is at in Scotland actually, so no home ground manage or anything there. Then the Big One, actually biggest game of the group stage, England versus Scotland, the two historic rivals playing it out of Wembley Stadium. Not going to be too many fans there, but there will be enough, definitely to hear them through the coverage. I'm going England one near I think Scotland will make it a very close affair. They'll definitely like park the bus as such and try and counter attack against the English side. They might struggle to break them down, but I do predict them to eventually overcome the defensive ability of Scoland and I think England will win that one one nil. And the match day three we have England taking on check republic their final game in Wembley before well, I guess. If they've finished top of the group, as we expect, I think they will be heading off to Rome. I think it is for they're around a sixteen class and I have them beat in the Zech Republic to nil. Just don't think check republic will have enough going forward to breach the English defense and I think England will be too good too nil. And then creation verse of Scotland, which I believe. I'll tell it up in a second, but I think this might decide second place, if my thoughts are correct, and I've got creation winning to one, just seeing they will have a little bit too much talent for Scotland and by this stage of the tournament some of the combinations will be fired up again, I'm sure, in that Croatian side that saw them make the fine of the two thousand and Eighteen World Cup. And Yeah, Scotland or a good team, but I don't seen scoring more than one goal in any match to be honest. So just don't think they have that attacking finesse, I guess, or attacking flare. But yeah, created to one. And I'll tell you up that and tell you what my predicted table will be, telling the results of actually got a very, very tight group. I have England winning all three games, going through our nine points and I have each of the other three winning one game and losing too. I've got Scotland with a gold difference of minus one. CRAZ SHO gold difference of one, minus one, and check Republic of goal difference of to so I believe I've got this right. The way the tide breaker works is their match record. So they've all beaten one of each other. So that goes through the next then gold difference. So the check republic would be eliminated. They would come forth because their gold difference is the worst out of the two. And then you recycle back up to the head goal scored, sorry, and then the goal scoreds equaled, and then I've got them equal goal scored, and then you go recycle back up to the top and go ahead to head record and Quatia are beating Scholand according to my predictions. So I've got England one gracier to Scotland three. But, based on my group A and B predictions, are school...

...and very good chance of going through. Is the third place team, but once again I'll talk about that in my knockout predictions. So yeah, that's the end of the preview for one of the most entertaining groups. are going to be very interested to see how Scotland go in their first major tournament in a long time. Going to be obviously interested see how England go, whether they strategically come second to avoid one of the group of death teams, whether they look good enough to be one of the group of death teams. Yeah, or if gratia come out and play like they did in two thousand and eighteen, they'll also make it very entertaining. So starts in the now, in ten minutes. Very excited for it and yet good luck to all the teams involved. And the videos for all these episodes I've put out in the last two days. They're all stopped up and I'll try and release them all tomorrow, so stay tuned for them. They are obviously bit late, as the first match days happen for most of the groups have already covered, but still good content. So please check that out and we will see you soon. Choos.

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