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Euro 2016 Betting Preview

RECOMMENDED BETSMARKETODDSBOOKMAKERS
Austria (ew)Tournament Winner40/1Bet365
AustriaGroup F – Winner2/1Bet365
Switzerland (ew)Tournament Winner50/1Bet365
Italy (ew)Tournament Winner18/1Coral, Betfair
EnglandGroup B – To Finish Bottom12/1Coral, Betfair
Marc Janko (ew)Top Goalscorer66/1Bet365
Marc JankoTop Austria Goalscorer9/4Coral
Kevin De Bruyne (ew)Top Goalscorer40/1Bet365

We have 20 more games to get stuck into at this year’s European Championships, as there are now 24 teams engaged instead of 16.

France, with home advantage, have been installed as the bookmakers’ favourites at a best price of 16/5 with Ladbrokes, while the World Champions Germany are second favourites at 9/2 with Coral, followed by Spain at 11/2 with Bet365.

England, the only side to qualify with a 100% record, come next at best price 9/1 with Betfred, while Belgium are 11/1 at Paddy Power, despite being the highest ranked European side on the FIFA World Rankings (no.2 behind Argentina).

France have won their last two major tournaments on home soil (Euro 84 & World Cup 98) and Didier Deschamps’ squad boasts some incredible young talent – the likes of Antoine Griezmann, Paul Pogba, N’Golo Kante, Blaise Matuidi, Dimitri Payet, Anthony Martial and Kingsley Coman could all be set to shine for the hosts.

However, it is worth remembering that there have been some surprise winners of this tournament, notably Greece at odds of 150/1 in 2004, and with this extended format giving the smaller teams greater chances of reaching the knockout stages, we suggest looking for sides who could belie their odds this time around.

AUSTRIA were another side to enjoy an excellent qualification campaign, drawing their opening game then winning nine in a row in a group containing Sweden and Russia. They are currently ranked 10th in the FIFA World Rankings, one spot ahead of England, and yet can be backed at odds of 40/1 at Bet365 (who are also offering money back on all teams at Euro 2016 that are eliminated on penalties).

Marcel Koller’s squad boasts a star in Bayern Munich’s David Alaba but what speaks most in their favour is their draw in the weakest group, featuring Portugal, Hungary and Iceland. We also suggest backing them to win Group F at 2/1.

Another side who could thrive in France are SWITZERLAND, who qualified behind England for this tournament. Again, they have a favourable looking draw – as while they face France in their final Group A game, they may both have already qualified having faced Albania and Romania. If they finish second to France in the group, their likely last-16 opponents (Poland or Ukraine) also look very beatable.

Vladimir Petkovic’s squad includes new £30 million Arsenal signing Granit Xhaka, plus Stoke City star Xherdan Shaqiri (“the Messi of the Alps”) and the Swiss were just two minutes from taking Argentina to penalties at the 2014 World Cup.

ITALY regularly perform well at big tournaments, indeed since England reached their only major final when hosting the 1966 World Cup, there have been 12 Euro Championships and 12 World Cups and Italy have made the final at 7 of those 24.

Runners-up to Spain four years ago, the Azzurri should surely not be double the price of England at 18/1 with Coral and Betfair to lift the trophy under Chelsea’s incoming manager Antonio Conte, who steered them to top spot in their qualifying group with 7 wins and 3 draws, ahead of a very talented Croatia side.

England look poor value at 9/1, although Betfred are at least offering money back on Roy Hodgson’s side if they exit on penalties again – the Three Lions have been eliminated this way in 3 of their last 4 appearances at the Euro’s (96, 04 & 12).

England have never won their opening game at the Euro’s and if they continue that trend against Russia on Sunday, current odds of 12/1 with Coral and Betfair that they finish bottom of Group B could be long gone.

RECOMMENDED BETSMARKETODDSBOOKMAKERS
Austria (ew)Tournament Winner40/1Bet365
AustriaGroup F – Winner2/1Bet365
Switzerland (ew)Tournament Winner50/1Bet365
Italy (ew)Tournament Winner18/1Coral, Betfair
EnglandGroup B – To Finish Bottom12/1Coral, Betfair

Top Goalscorer

Cristiano Ronaldo and Thomas Muller are joint favourites at odds of 8/1 to be the leading goal scorer in France. But, once again, we suggest looking for better value elsewhere and we will return to Austria for our first suggestion.

MARC JANKO is by far the most prolific goal scorer for his country (he is a huge 9/4 with Coral to be the Austria’s top scorer) and scored 7 goals in qualification. He looks an excellent each-way bet at 66/1 with Bet365 (1/4 odds – 4 places).

We also want to be with Belgium’s KEVIN DE BRUYNE, whose freshness following an interrupted domestic season could pay dividends here. He finished the season in fine form for Manchester City and can be backed at odds of 40/1 with Bet365.

RECOMMENDED BETSMARKETODDSBOOKMAKERS
Marc Janko (ew)Top Goalscorer66/1Bet365
Marc JankoTop Austria Goalscorer9/4Coral
Kevin De Bruyne (ew)Top Goalscorer40/1Bet365