Preview: Euro 2020 Group B

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Euro 2021

Group B at the 2020 UEFA European Championships includes some heavy hitters as well as a new addition to the European stage.

Belgium, Denmark, Finland, and Russia will go head-to-head to determine who goes through.

This is Finland’s first-ever major tournament and they face two former winners in Denmark and Russia and a strong Belgian side.

BELGIUM

Belgium has chosen a squad filled with players in their primes.

Their 26-man team entering the tournament is the oldest at an average age of 29.3.

Furthermore, their squad is the most internationally experienced, with over 50 caps per player on average.

Belgium’s world-class individuals will have the world in awe once again this year.

However, an ageing defence may put a roadblock in their chances at glory.

Regardless, a side that includes Kevin De Bruyne and Romelu Lukaku will strike fear into the hearts of the opposition.

The presence of Thibaut Courtois between the sticks will offer safe hands while Timothy Castagne will offer the side an extra man out wide.

The Belgians squad is stacked and they should have minimal problems getting out of Group B.

DENMARK

Denmark will provide the Belgians with their biggest challenge in the group stage with world-class talents of their own lining up for the Danes this summer.

Kasper Schmeichel will act as the impenetrable wall behind the reliable Andreas Christensen.

Pierre-Emile H√łjbjerg will work tirelessly to protect the backline while Christian Eriksen will be the side‚Äôs playmaker.

RB Leipzig’s Yussuf Poulsen and Barcelona’s Martin Braithwaite offer options in attack.

All three of their games will be played in Parken Stadium, Copenhagen and the home advantage could help them when they need it most.

FINLAND

Finland was one of the surprise packages in the qualifying phase, beating out Greece and Bosnia & Herzegovina to a place in Euro 2020.

The side boasts a veteran squad filled with talents from foreign leagues.

Bayer Leverkusen’s Lukas Hradecky will offer a safe pair of hands in goal.

In addition to this, Finnish-Irish star Daniel O’Shaugnessy will form part of the side’s three-man defence.

31-year-old Teemu Pukki will lead the line for the Eagle-Owls with Glen Kamara and captain Tim Sparv occupying the midfield.

The side has upset World Cup winners France in the last year and could offer an upset in the group.

RUSSIA

2018 World Cup hosts Russia round off the teams in Group B.

The World Cup quarterfinalists will compete for one of the two automatic spots in the group but will be without some of their core players from the World Cup run.

Goalkeeper Anton Shunin will hope to replicate Igor Akinfeev’s performances on the world stage but with only three selected centre-backs to protect him.

M√°rio Fernandes will offer Russia the creative outlet and width he has done for years on the right-hand side while the trio of Aleksander Golovin, Aleksey Miranchuk and Denis Cheryshev will look to light up the tournament alongside their captain Artem Dzyuba.

Russia also has a home advantage at Krestovsky Stadium, St. Petersburg for two of their games ‚Äď Belgium and Finland.

Aside from the Belgians, this group could be one of the more competitive of the tournament.

Group B fixtures: Denmark v Finland, Saturday, 12th June 17:00. Belgium v Russia, Saturday 12th June 20:00. Finland v Russia, Wednesday 16th June 14:00. Denmark v Belgium, Thursday, 17th June 17:00. Russia v Denmark, Monday, 21st June 20:00. Finland v Belgium, Monday 21st June 20:00.

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