Here are our picks for the Euro 2024 champions

French star Kylian Mbappe is arguably the world’s best player. Photo: EPA

French star Kylian Mbappe is arguably the world’s best player. Photo: EPA

Published Jun 14, 2024


The Euros 2024 kicks off tonight when Germany take on Scotland at the Allianz Arena in Munich.

Here, Independent Newspapers’ soccer writers put their necks on the block and choose their winners...


Fancied team: France

Why France will win: Les Bleus finished as runners-up at the 2022 World Cup, and the bulk of the team has been retained for EURO 2024. This squad possesses so much talent that although England may be the favourites with many bookmakers, France will be the team to beat at EURO 2024.

France are arguably stronger now than they were in Qatar, and they can prove their big-game bottle by defeating their rivals, all of whom are lower down on the Fifa world rankings.

Head coach: Didier Deschamps

Star player: Kylian Mbappe is arguably the world’s best player. He is best known for his dribbling, speed and finishing.

Previous titles: 1984: France 2-0 Spain; 2000: France 2-1 Italy (golden goal)

Group fixtures – 17 June: Austria; 21 June: Netherlands; 25 June: Poland


Fancied team: The Netherlands

The Netherlands may be the underdogs of the upcoming European Championship, even though they possess one of the most talented squads in the competition.

‘Die Oranje’ proved their might in the 2022 World Cup as they went toe-to-toe with eventual winners Argentina before bowing out via penalties in the quarter-finals.

With new guns such as Xavi Simmons (PSG) and Jeremy Frimpong (Bayer Leverkusen) adding to the likes of Memphis Depay, as well as Gini Wijnaldum, the Netherlands certainly have a team worthy of lifting the trophy.

Head coach: Ronald Koeman

Star player: Virgil van Dijk is the biggest name on the Dutch outfit’s team sheet, and is back to his best following a solid campaign with Liverpool.

The towering centre-back forms part of one of the finest defences in the world, and will look to captain his nation to their second Euro title.

Previous titles: 1998

Group fixtures – 16 June: Poland; 21 June: France; 25 June: Austria


Fancied team: Spain

The three-time Euro winners have been dishing out their ‘Spanish Fury’ on their opponents, and their new-found momentum produced a successful qualifying campaign, winning seven of their eight matches.

Their form and new-found belief following a below-par World Cup campaign could be enough to take them all the way, and back up their Uefa Nations League win last year with yet another continental trophy – outlining their return to dominance in world football.

Head coach: Luis de la Fuente

Star player: Rodrigo Hernandez Cascante

Rodri has been at the heart of Manchester City’s success, and he is one of the best midfielders in the world. He is flawless in defence and attack, and has a passing range to admire.

Previous titles: 1964: Soviet Union 2-1; 2008: Germany 1-0; 2012: Italy 4-0

Group fixtures – 15 June: Croatia; 20 June: Italy; 24 June: Albania

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