Every major international tournament seems to have a group of death and Euro 2020 this summer will be no different.
During the 16th edition of the European Championships, Group F will be that group as World champions France, European champions Portugal, three-time World champions Germany and Hungary all go head-to-head for a chance to progress into the Round of 16.
With 24 nations taking part in the tournament, there will be six groups of four teams competing for a place in the knockout rounds with the top two from each group achieving automatic qualification. The four best third-place teams will then also qualify for the next stage.
Three of the more favoured teams in the tournament will be involved in one of those groups and it should make for riveting viewing for fans.
Group F winners
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Didier Deschamps’ France squad is absolutely stacked from top to bottom, and is boosted even further by the return of Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema to the squad following a six year hiatus. The current World champions are the favourites to be crowned European champions this summer but they’ll have to get past some very tough opponents first and foremost.
They topped their qualification group with eight wins from ten games as they finished ahead of Turkey.
Bernardo Silva, Bruno Fernandes and Ruben Dias all had excellent seasons in the Premier League, while Joao Felix was crowned La Liga champion with Atletico Madrid and they will make up a core part of the Portugal side.
Their qualification process wasn’t the best, finishing second in their group behind Ukraine. They followed up their Euro 2016 win by winning the UEFA Nations League too in 2019, although they were eliminated from the most recent edition by France in the group stage.
Behind them, a young Germany side come into the tournament with a point to prove after a poor showing at the 2018 World Cup and with manager Joachim Low on his way out.
The 2014 World Cup winners have already decided to replace him with former Bayern Munich boss Hansi Flick after the tournament ends, but with Champions League winners Timo Werner and Kai Havertz as well as Thomas Muller, Serge Gnabry and Joshua Kimmich in the squad he will feel he has a great chance of going out on a high.
Hungary will be seen by many as just making up the numbers and their chances took a bigger hit when star-man Dominic Szoboszlai was ruled out through injury. That means hopes will fall on his RB Leipzig teammate Willi Orban to lead the team from centre-back.
According to the bookies, Germany has a better hope of topping the group than Portugal do, but it’s very close.
It’s without doubt the most enthralling group of the bunch and will be fiercely contested, with every round of fixtures having at least one monster clash taking place. A third place finish could lead to qualification but the with chances of defeat just as high as the chances of winning, don’t be too shocked if one of these sides isn’t one of the four best third placed teams to get through.