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Euro 2020: Why Belgium Should be the Favorites

Belgium are in pole position to secure a first major soccer trophy in their history at Euro 2020.

A flawless qualifying campaign has seen them cement their place at the top of the FIFA world rankings and big things are expected this summer.

However, despite the fact they have a squad packed with some of the world’s top talent, they are still not considered the favourites for glory. Some sportsbooks for Euro 2020 like bet365 have priced up England at the top of the market at odds of around 9/2 (5.50), with Belgium currently sitting as third-favourites at around 5/1 (6.00).

Belgium should be the favourites, especially when you consider the talent at manager Roberto Martinez’s disposal. It makes them an interesting proposition when betting on soccer ahead of the tournament.

The Key Men for Belgium at Euro 2020

Kevin De Bruyne 

July 10, 2018; St. Petersburg, Russia; Belgium midfielder Kevin De Bruyne (7) passes the ball during the first half in the semifinals of the FIFA World Cup 2018 against France at Saint Petersburg Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Groothuis/Witters Sport via USA TODAY Sports

The Manchester City midfielder has been in stunning form this season and is likely to finish at the top of the Premier League’s top assists chart come May.

His ability to find space between the lines and link up with City’s attacking options has been brilliant to watch. He is one of the best creative midfielders in the world since working with Pep Guardiola and can be the catalyst to Belgium’s success this summer. He also has goals in his game and an ability to run with the ball at feet when the chance opens up.

Eden Hazard

The former Chelsea attacker has seen his time at Real Madrid hampered by niggling injuries this season. Despite that, he remains one of the best players on the planet and can be almost unstoppable with the ball at his feet.

Romelu Lukaku

July 10, 2018; St. Petersburg, Russia; Belgium forward Romelu Lukaku (9) looks on during the first half in the semifinals of the FIFA World Cup 2018 against France at Saint Petersburg Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Groothuis/Witters Sport via USA TODAY Sports

The centre forward has been rejuvenated by his move to Inter Milan this season and has been at the top of the scoring charts in Serie A along with Cristiano Ronaldo.

He had lost his way at Manchester United, but a fit and firing Lukaka will be key to Belgium’s chances of success. His ability to lead the line as well as run in behind will only help the likes of Hazard and De Bruyne to shine.

Other Players to Watch Out for

Belgium are far from a team of two or three superstars. They have an array of top talent from leagues across Europe.

The likes of Real Madrid’s Thibaut Courtois will be in goal. Tottenham duo Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen will be in defence. Other star names include Leicester’s Youri Teilemans, Liverpool’s Divock Origi and Borussia Dortmund’s Axel Witsel.

Belgium’s Main Rivals at Euro 2020

England

England have their own generation of young talent coming through under manager Gareth Southgate.

A squad that already had the likes of Harry Kane, Marcus Rashford, Harry Maguire and Raheem Sterling from the last world cup has been bolstered by even more exciting prospects.

Dortmund’s Jadon Sancho, Liverpool’s Trent Alexander-Arnold and Joe Gomez and Chelsea’s Mason Mount are just a few names to keep an eye on.

But England are the masters of a heartbreaking tournament exit in the quarter-finals, and it is that lack of experience previously levelled at Belgium that could be more of an issue for this current crop of stars.

France

Any side with Kylian Mbappe, Paul Pogba, Antoine Griezmann, N’Golo Kante and Rachael Varane in their ranks have to be considered among the favourites. France have won the European Championship twice and the world cup twice and know what it takes to claim wins on the big stage.

However, being drawn in the so-called group of death alongside Germany and Portugal severely hinders their chances.

If they can find the inner steel needed for a long tournament and give their attacking players a solid base to work from then they are an obvious danger.

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