Austria finished second in a tamed qualification group dominated by Poland. The victories over Slovenia and North Macedonia in the fall of last year were enough to allow the team to score free to become an automatic pointer.
However, Austria was drawn to a competitive group C for the final alongside the Holland, a dangerous Ukrainian team and the winner of track A or D of the playoffs. Austria fans can buy Austria Euro Cup Tickets online.
Franco Foda’s team is certainly stronger than the outfit that stank the place for the last few euros and they will expect to qualify for the round of 16 at least as one of the four best teams in third place. Well, that’s what they said four years ago, and look how it turned out.
The Holland is a nation that has a feeling of belonging to international competition. The absence of these bright orange jerseys from Euro 2016 and the 2018 World Cup was shocking to the neutrals, not to mention how the Dutch themselves must have felt.
In Virgil van Dijk, the Holland arguably boasts the best defender in European football. His partner in the tournament – unless injured – should be the very talented Matthijs de Light, who, at only 20, could continue to receive the distinctions that his compatriot receives every week.
The Dutch came second in their qualifying group, one point behind their German rivals. While Northern Ireland fought an admirable fight to disturb the first places, it was finally a race of two horses because the Holland and Germany lost only one match in stride.
Holland vs Austria
Date: Thursday 18th June 2020
Stadium: National Arena
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The Dutch teams of the past were able to call on some of the best offensive talents of the day and often ended up being a top team. This iteration could have the opposite problem, with midfielders Georginio Wijnaldum and Frenkie de Jong in front of the aforementioned central defenders, the threat of attack they can offer is rather low in comparison.
Memphis Depay had thrived as a central striker on this side, contributing 16 goals in his last eight international matches, but when he broke his ACL in late 2019, he was excluded from the tournament this summer.
Instead, Ronald Koeman – if he still had to be in charge at the time the tournament takes place, which is not inevitable for Dutch coaches in the past – could turn to Ryan Babel, 33, or an exciting adolescent talent at Newcastle linked Myron Boadu.
Ukraine enters Euro 2020 in a burning form with a living legend as a coach; Andriy Shevchenko. The former Milan star is the second most capped player in the country and the top scorer of all time.
Ukraine vs Austria
Date: Monday 22nd June 2020
Stadium: National Arena
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Shevchenko led his nation to first place in his qualifying group, beating Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal in the first place. Ukraine was one of only five teams to remain undefeated throughout qualifying, having won six of its eight matches.
Premier League viewers know West Ham’s Andriy Yarmolenko of West Ham on the right flank and Oleksandr Zinchenko, who is most often deployed in the central midfield for his country, rather than the left rear lunge in which he often found himself in Manchester City.
But Ruslan Malinovskyi, Atalanta’s midfielder, 26, also catches the eye as he knits the piece in the center of the park and never hesitates to tear a long-distance effort from a dead ball or of an open part when he can work on his left.
The joint hosts of Euro 2012 cannot do worse than their last outing in a major tournament – the 2016 European Championship in France when they lost each match without scoring a goal.
Play-off Winner D or A
The last members of the Austrian group come from one of the five options; Romania, Georgia, Belarus, North Macedonia or Kosovo.
Romania is part of the track A teams, and if they win in this phase, they join group C. The other four teams are on track D and if Romania does not progress, the victorious nation of Georgia, Belarus, North Macedonia or Kosovo will join the Holland, Ukraine and Austria.
Austria vs Play-off winner D or A
Date: Sunday 14th June 2020
Stadium: National Arena
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Georgia and Belarus have won three victories between them in qualifying while Austria is familiar with North Macedonia, a team they have already played (and beaten) twice in the previous round.
Kosovo should be watched after competing well in the English group and frightening the Three Lions in a crazy 5-3 match at St Mary’s. Romania also impressed at times by finishing behind Spain, Sweden, and Norway during the qualifications, with Ianis Hagi (21), the son of the great Gheorghe, who seemed to have a special talent for attacking the middle ground.
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