Euro 2020 winner, top scorer, England hopes and more predicted by Mirror Football

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The 1,797 day wait since Portugal lifted the Henri Delaunay Trophy at the Stade de France is almost over.

Turkey and Italy will get Euro 2020 underway on Friday ahead of 51 games between 24 nations in exactly a month.

Rather than the usual host nation, there will be 11 venues used across the tournament with Wembley, where the final will be held, joined by Rome, Baku, St Petersburg, Seville, Bucharest, Amsterdam, Glasgow, Copenhagen, Budapest and Munich as entertainers.

We've asked Mirror Football's writers for their predictions for the Euro 2020 winners, runner-ups, semi-finalists, top scorer and how will England get on.

Here is what they think…

Euro 2020 gets underway on Friday
(Image: Getty Images)

ANDY DUNN

WINNER: Belgium

RUNNER-UP: Spain

SEMI-FINALISTS: Holland, France

Assuming Kevin de Bruyne is fit and firing, the Belgians have a wonderfully balanced squad and, in Eden Hazard, a world-class player with a major point to prove.

Spain are going under the radar but will be thoroughly well-organised and have a great Euro pedigree.

France might wilt under the pressure of favouritism and Holland will surprise a few people.

TOP SCORER: Romelu Lukaku

ENGLAND PREDICTION: Round of 16. Winning the group could be the downfall. They will then meet the runners-up in the Group of Death and a shaky defence will be exposed

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JOHN CROSS

WINNER: France

RUNNER-UP: Italy

SEMI-FINALISTS: Portugal, Belgium

I think France are the best team by far, they have the best strikers, the best squad and if they play well and keep it together… they’ll win in style.

I fancy Italy to do well, they’re in a good place in the build-up.

TOP SCORER: Kylian Mbappe

ENGLAND PREDICTION: Quarterfinals. Who knows how the Groups will finish and the draw will go, and I’m sorry for being pessimistic. I think England at their best could win the Euros. I think they’re great and the manager has done an incredible job.

But… I fear the build-up (through no fault of their own) has been a nightmare with injuries, withdrawals, players reporting up late etc… I just think it’ll be beyond them this time.

I’d love to be wrong.

Kylian Mbappe carries plenty of France's attacking hopes

DARREN LEWIS

WINNER: England

RUNNER-UP: France

SEMI-FINALISTS: England vs Portugal, Belgium vs France

All four teams have the quality and the depth to make it through to the latter stages.

Although Portugal are in the group of death, the lifeline of the third-placed team progressing means they could yet make it while England, Belgium and France all have the class to finish top of their groups and overcome any subsequent opponents.

Both games would have fascinating sub-plots with England looking to overcome their ghosts of Germany 2006 and France beating Belgium in 2018 to reach that year's World Cup Final. It should make for a stunning climax to what looks set to become an outstanding festival of football.

TOP SCORER: Romelu Lukaku. Should fill his boots in a group including Russia, Denmark and Finland.

ENGLAND PREDICTION: England may have had a chaotic preparation for these finals on and off the pitch, but they could yet use the group to rediscover their stride and build up momentum.

The scars of the past have left older fans to fight shy of getting ahead of ourselves with the Three Lions. But this is a side packed with winners, young, fearless talent and all kinds of cutting edge up front. They should come out on top.

Will Gareth Southgate be smiling on July 11?
(Image: AFP/Getty Images)

DAVID ANDERSON

WINNER : France

RUNNER-UP: Italy

SEMI-FINALISTS: England and Belgium

France will be the team to beat and they still retain the bulk of their 2018 World Cup-winning squad.

Chuck in Karin Benzema, who has come out of international retirement, and they have more than enough class to win their first Euros since 2000.

Roberto Mancini’s Italy will be hard to beat and they have gone 27 games without defeat and recorded eight successive clean sheets.

England and Belgium are peppered with talented individuals and have the quality to go close, but will miss out.

TOP SCORER: Harry Kane. Kane was top scorer at the last World Cup, won the Premier League’s Golden Boot last season and is in the form of his life.

ENGLAND PREDICTION: Semi-finals. Playing every game at Wembley apart from the quarter-final is a huge boost for England and they have the quality to win the Euros.

But they lack the technical quality needed to win a major tournament and will fall short at the semi-final stage.

Harry Kane picked up the Golden Boot for England during the 2018 World Cup. Can he now repeat the trick at Euro 2020?
(Image: Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)

DAVID MCDONNELL

WINNER: France

RUNNER-UP: Belgium

SEMI-FINALISTS: Spain, Italy

France are the overwhelming favourites to win Euro 2020 and with good reason. They are the World Cup holders and possess arguably the strongest squad, with world-class players in every position, including Kylian Mbappe, Paul Pogba, N’Golo Kante and Raphael Varane.

With that quality and the experience of having won the World Cup in 2018, they will be hard to beat.

Perhaps their biggest threat will be Belgium, who also have significant strength in depth and match-winners in the likes of Kevin De Bruyne and Romelu Lukaku, who inspired Inter Milan to the Serie A title with a glut of goals.

If Lukaku carries that form into Euro 2020 and De Bruyne is at his imperious best, Belgium could go all the way, but I expect France to underline their status as the world’s best side.

TOP SCORER: Romelu Lukaku (Belgium)

ENGLAND PREDICTION: England will make it through the group stage, but I fear they will come unstuck in the knockout stage, where they are likely to meet one of France, Germany or Portugal in the last 16, if they win Group D.

Even if they make it through the last 16, I can’t see them getting past the quarter-final stage

Despite home advantage and impressive attacking options, Gareth Southgate’s side remain vulnerable at the back and that could prove their undoing against the stronger countries in the knockout stage.

Romelu Lukaku is many Mirror Football writer's tip for the golden boot
(Image: Belga/AFP via Getty Images)

SIMON MULLOCK

WINNER: Portugal

RUNNER-UP: England

SEMI-FINALISTS: Portugal, England, Belgium, Holland

Defending champions Portugal have an even stronger squad than they did when they triumphed in France in 2016.

Cristiano Ronaldo is still the stellar name in Fernando Santos' team but from back to front they have talent to burn.

There is a strong Premier League presence in Portugal's squad, starting with Rui Patricio in goal, Ruben Dias and Joao Cancelo in defence, Joao Moutinho, Ruben Neves, Bruno Fernandes and Bernardo Silva in midfield and Diogo Jota up front.

They will once again be able to call on Pepe, an experienced master of the dark arts, while 21-year-old Joao Felix could be one of the young stars of the tournament.

TOP SCORER: Romelu Lukaku (Belgium)

ENGLAND PREDICTION: England should progress through their group – but if they go through in first place the draw could become tricky.

Gareth Southgate has a strong squad and home advantage and the England boss is urging his men to thrive rather than shrivel under the weight of expectation.

So this is an opportunity to get into a major final for the first time since 1966.

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DAVID MADDOCK

WINNER: France

RUNNER-UP: Germany

SEMI-FINALISTS: Wales, Belgium

France are still the team to beat, despite Belgium taking the number one slot in the rankings. They have a depth of striking talent the others can not match, and probably the best set of defenders in world football.

I think they'll again meet Belgium in the semis, and it will be tight if they do, but the French have the edge psychologically…and they also have Kylian Mbappe, my tip to finish as the tournament's top scorer.

Germany seem to have been written off, but they are a tournament team and they know how to deal with the knockout, and I can see them making the final through the other half of the draw, while Wales are my surprise tip – why not? They have character and they have no pressure.

TOP SCORER: Kylian Mbappe

ENGLAND PREDICTION: They don't look ready to hit the ground running, and to me, that's dangerous, because they need to beat Croatia to avoid getting France too early in the competition.

I can see them drawing the opening game and finishing second in the group, which would probably see them face the French at the quarter-final stage, and despite Southgate's riches up front, his defence is not strong enough for that match up.

Karim Benzema is back in the France squad
(Image: AFP/Getty Images)

NEIL MCLEMAN

WINNER: France

RUNNER-UP: Germany

SEMI-FINALISTS: Italy, Holland

The first time France won the World Cup in 1998 with Didier Deschamps as captain, they went on to win Euro 2000.

With the former Chelsea midfielder now as head coach, Les Bleus can repeat the feat this year. Deschamps has taken a calculated gamble to recall Karim Benzema to the squad after five years with blackmail charges still hanging over the Real Madrid striker. But if it works, France will have a fearsome front three in Kylian Mbappe, Antoine Greizmann and Benzema.

A semi-final between France and Italy, who have been reinvigorated by Robert Mancini, will produce the tournament winners.

And then being French, France will not win a game at the next World Cup like they did in 2002.

TOP SCORER: Karim Benzema

ENGLAND PREDICTION: I fear for the England defence and cannot see them keeping a clean sheet against the top sides. And it could be Germany in the round of 16 if Gareth Southgate's team win their group.

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NEIL MOXLEY

WINNERS: France

RUNNER-UP: Germany

SEMI-FINALISTS: Italy, Holland

I’ve worked through my Sunday People wall-chart and my best guess is the above.

There’s a number of strong sides but the reigning world champs are about as good as it gets. They have goals, energy, industry, experience. It’s an enticing mix.

Of the rest, Germany will be strengthened by the return of Thomas Muller. Portugal’s starting XI is stronger than when they won it five years ago. Belgium have turned into nearly men but on their day can beat anyone. In the other half of the draw, a resurgent Italy – with three group games on their own patch – could get off to a flier. And momentum counts.

But it’s France for me.

TOP SCORER: Kylian Mbappe (France)

ENGLAND PREDICTION: Defeated in the last 16 by either Portugal or Germany.

If England finish top of the pile in Group D – and they should – that’s the fate that awaits them. Personally, I have no confidence in the defence – and Tyrone Mings in particular – at that level of international football.

As for the last 16 tie, France are genuinely stronger – it’s unlikely to be them, anyway – Germany aren’t as weak as everyone thinks and it’s always touch and go against the Portuguese.

Looking at the likely progression of the top teams, England will face Spain in the quarters and Holland in the semis before taking on, Italy or France in the final. Just can’t see them getting through that lot.

TOM HOPKINSON

WINNER: France
RUNNER-UP: Belgium
SEMI-FINALISTS: Germany, England

The world champions have the big-game nous that will make the difference against Belgium in the final.

Roberto Martinez’s men are a class side jam-packed with wonderful footballers but have they got the spite, the know-how, as a group to see it through?

It’d be great if they had for a different winner but I’m not so sure.

TOP SCORER: Harry Kane

ENGLAND PREDICTION: Semi-finals. It all depends on how they finish the group, of course, because all bets could be off with some tough opponents potentially waiting for them as soon as the knockout stages begin.

England can go all the way — and let’s hope they do — but the squad will need to grow into the tournament in a way they haven’t managed to do for decades now to be in with a chance of that.

JAMES NURSEY

WINNER: Belgium

RUNNER-UP: Holland

SEMI-FINALISTS: France, England

Belgium top the world rankings and are getting progressively better in tournaments. Surely they have to win one soon with the likes of Kevin De Bruyne, Eden Hazard, Romelu Lukaku and Co in their side.

They look to have everything it takes to prevail. World Cup winners France will also clearly be a big threat but they have a lot of stars and you wonder how the recall of Karim Benzema will affect the dynamics.

Perhaps Belgium will send them home in the semi-finals. While home advantage and some decent attacking talent should also put England in the mix.

TOP SCORER: Romelu Lukaku.

ENGLAND PREDICTION: Gareth Southgate's men are good enough to go deep into the competition. I am excited by Jack Grealish's role in the side and believe he can unlock the top teams and give Harry Kane the ammunition.

But ultimately against a classy side like potentially Holland in the semi-finals – who beat the Three Lions 3-1 in the Nations League in 2019 – I fear our defensive is not strong enough.

Jack Grealish may be England's best chance of unlocking the top sides
(Image: The FA via Getty Images)

MIKE WALTERS

WINNER: Germany

RUNNER-UP: Belgium

SEMI-FINALISTS: England, France

Deep down, in all honesty, does anyone genuinely believe Germany are the strongest football nation in Europe right now? No.

But since when has it ever – ever – been advisable to back against the Germans in a major tournament?

They bombed out in the group phase at the World Cup three years ago, and earlier this year they lost at home to North Macedonia.

But Germany are not going to let coach Joachim Low go out with a whimper, and there is a whiff of them flying under the radar. If they avoid defeat against France in the best opening group match at the Euros, they will be confident of going deep into the knockout phase.

TOP SCORER: Romelu Lukaku

ENGLAND PREDICTION: Better make that 55 years of hurt. Another close shave with glory, but no cigar.

Should we be keeping a close eye on Germany?

ALEX RICHARDS

WINNER : Belgium

RUNNER-UP: France

SEMI-FINALISTS: England, Germany

After falling surprisingly to Wales at Euro 2016 and finishing third in the 2018 World Cup, finally Belgium's golden generation will land gold.

Roberto Martinez's side boast experience and quality throughout, not least in the shape of Romelu Lukaku and Kevin de Bruyne.

But the real key is likely to be Eden Hazard, a player who should be fresh after a miserable season at Real Madrid and with a point to prove. He brings the X-Factor to their side and can make the difference.

World champions France are favourites for a reason and have the most complete squad and will go deep, while England and Germany should make up the final four.

TOP SCORER: Harry Kane – Probably scores a hat-trick at some point, reaches 5, and that'll be enough.

ENGLAND PREDICTION: Gareth Southgate's men can blast their way through the group stage – although Croatia won't be easy – but against elite opposition, defensive worries remain and may well prove crucial.

At the 2018 World Cup, Southgate didn't really have the subs needed to change games. He has that here and can make himself a hero by using his squad effectively; whether Jack Grealish and Phil Foden start the opening game doesn't matter anywhere near as much as how they're used thereon in.

MARK JONES

WINNER: France

RUNNER-UP: Germany

SEMI-FINALISTS: Belgium, Portugal

Boring I know, but there is simply no other team who can boast the quality that France have this summer.

Play this tournament on FIFA and you might well get France vs France reserves in the final, and the reintroduction of Karim Benzema only makes them stronger.

They are in a tough group, but should they win it as expected then the tournament will really open up for them.

TOP SCORER: Romelu Lukaku

ENGLAND PREDICTION: Last-16. Up until a few weeks ago I thought England would have a really good tournament, but the vibes coming out of the camp suddenly don’t seem to be overly positive ones.

That’s not all their fault, but Southgate’s rather muddled selection of his squad doesn’t really bode well, and there’s something that just seems a little off.

They also seem certain to face a very good opponent in the last-16, and that might prove too tough a hurdle to pass.

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