Two nations ahead of France, Belgium far behind: who are the favourites for the Euros?

Euro 2024: What to know about Belgium

According to the weekly letter published by the CIES Football Observatory, Germany and Spain are the two favourites for the competition. The organisation has mainly based its assessment on the competitiveness of the squads involved.

It’s hard to imagine France, and England to a lesser extent, not lifting the Euro trophy on July 14th, so dominant do their squads seem to be over any other selection. However, according to the CIES Football Observatory, two other nations rank ahead of the two overwhelming favourites for the final title.

To clarify this ranking, the CIES is based on the competitiveness of the squads, calculated “from an index weighting the minutes played by the selected players in the last year by the sporting level of their matches”. According to these rules, Germany (82.9/100) and Spain (82.4/100) would be favourites. The host country and the double European champions in 2008 and 2012 have the weapons to fight all the way to the end of the competition.

If the Nationalmannschaft has not shown its best face in its recent preparation matches (a difficult victory against Greece, and a draw against Ukraine), this is not the case for Spain. La Roja has just easily defeated Northern Ireland 5-1, and has above all scored 25 goals in its Euro qualifying campaign. Only France and Portugal have done better.

Behind them, we find the two unshakeable ones, France (82.2/100) and England (81.1/100). And with three finals played in the last four competitions, Kylian Mbappé’s gang is approaching this Euro – on paper at least – in a legitimate position as favourites. The same goes for their best English enemy, whose squad seems as young as it is talented.

What about Belgium?

It’s hard to know where this young Belgian generation can go. The squad is in full transition, but the talent is there. If we refer to the CIES ranking, the Devils’ run would end in the quarter-finals, making us the eighth team in the ranking of favourites (78.2). In between are Portugal, the Netherlands and Italy.

Only reality on the pitch matters, and the first answers will already come this Friday, for the opening match between Germany and Scotland.

Written by Angel Chioma

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