Euro 2024 Group B Predictions: Spain to come out on top

 | Monday 10th June 2024, 14:45pm

Monday 10th June 2024, 14:45pm

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Group B on paper appears to be one of the toughest groups on offer at Euro 2024 this summer. You have three strong teams in Spain, reigning champions Italy, and Croatia, while Albania complete the roster. The battle for the top two will be competitive, but you would have to fancy Group B to produce one of the four third-place qualification spots up for grabs.

Below you will find a guide to each of the four teams and my Euro 2024 Group B predictions, including odds.

Euro 2024 Group B Betting Tips

  • Spain to win the group @ 4/5
  • Spain 1st, Croatia 2nd @ 7/2

Spain

Fifa world ranking: 8th

To win the group: 4/5

Three-time European champions Spain will be hoping for more success on the continent this summer. They reached the semi-finals last time out but were sent home on penalties against Italy.

They were back-to-back champions in 2008 and 2012, with a World Cup sandwiched in between, but no one is going to say this crop of players are anywhere near the level of the side that boasted Xavi, Andres Iniesta, Sergio Busquets, Sergio Ramos, Carles Puyoul, Iker Casillas and more.

However, there are some very talented players in this current squad and Luis de la Fuente will be looking to get the best out of them in Germany. They topped their group in qualifying, losing just once at the hands of Scotland, but they will be facing much tougher opponents at the finals and will need to be at their absolute best to become European champions for a fourth time.

Key player: Rodri

Fresh after winning another Premier League title with Manchester City, midfield battler Rodri will be hoping to add to the Uefa Nations League title he has already collected with a more prestigious trophy in form of the European Championship.

He has been instrumental for Pep Guardiola in the last few years and his role in the middle of the park looks to be just as important for La Roja at the Euros. He is the best defensive midfielder in the world and having a player of his calibre at your disposal could go a long way for Spain.

Rodri is important for breaking up play and initiating attacks, and is no stranger to scoring either.

Prediction: It is hard to see Spain finishing other than first in Group B. They've been in the better form of the four sides leading up to the tournament and I think they edge out their opponents in terms of quality in their ranks too.

Spain to win the Euros at 7/1 Croatia

Fifa world ranking: 10th

To win the group: 9/2

After making their way to the World Cup final in 2018 Croatia ended up finishing third in Qatar less than two years ago, but in their last Euros campaign in 2021, they crashed out at the round of 16.

That was a 5-3 defeat after extra time against Spain, whom they will compete against in Group B. Croatia are a tricky nation to call, despite their recent success on the world stage. They will be a tough nut to crack but it is hard to picture them having what is required to become the champions of Europe.

The players left of their recent golden era are cracking on and captain Luka Modric in particular is 38. They do have younger talent in the likes of Lovro Majer and Josko Gvardiol, however, who can step into the spotight this tournament.

Key player: Luka Modric

He may be a veteran, but Modric still shows how useful he is to Croatia as he has been for Real Madrid. It will be interesting to see how he is handled at the Euros but if he is fit he will play. His vision, judgement and leadership cannot be understated for this team, and these qualities remain integral for Croatia.

Prediction: I believe it will be tight at the top of Group B but I do favour Spain to go through as winners, and I am leaning towards Croatia to take second spot because this group continues to bounce back when you think they have peaked.

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Italy

Fifa world ranking: 9th

To win the group: 2/1

Three years ago Italy were crowned the champions of Europe under the guidance of Roberto Mancini, defeating England on penalties at Wembley Stadium.

Italy head to Euro 2024 under the leadership of Luciano Spalletti and there will be plenty of pressure on the defending champions, despite being pegged as the 16/1 sixth favourites to win it on this occasion. Their form of late has been solid but they haven't featured at a major tournament since their triumph in 2021, so they could be in for a slow start.

They are widely perceived to be lacking world-class players which could leave them at a disadvantage in Group B when competing alongside Spain and Croatia. Forward Gianluca Scamacca heads into the summer off the back of a strong season with Atalanta and he will be looked to for inspiration from his compatriots.

Key player: Gianluigi Donnarumma

Goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma played a crucial role in Italy's path to glory in 2021 but he was fortunate to have the support of two strong defenders in Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci.

They aren't around now and so the shot-stopper will have a much less experienced defence in front of him. I expect he will have a lot to do for his team in Germany and should they get through to the knockout stage, I bet they will have him to thank.

Prediction: Italy are going through a big turnover of players and so this tournament will be spent giving much of the fresher faces tournament experience. They could surprise a few but I can't see it. I believe they will miss out on the top two spots but it remains to be seen whether or not they can muster enough points to be one of the four third-place teams fortunate to progress too.

bf_euros_top_scorer_800x258_euro_hub Albania

Fifa world ranking: 66th

To win the group: 22/1

This is just the second time in which Albania have qualified for the European Championship finals. The last time was in France for the 2016 tournament. They were in a group with the host nation, as well as Switzerland and Romania. They finished the group stage in third with three points but they ranked last out of the six third-place sides.

Sylvinho's squad have done well to get to Germany but they will consider themselves unfortunate to have been drawn in this year's dubbed 'group of death.' It is going to be a tough group stage for them, and much more difficult than the one they faced eight years ago. It will be impressive if they come out of this tournament with any points.

Key player: Armando Broja

Premier League watchers will be familiar with Armando Broja of Chelsea, who has also played for Fulham and Southampton. The striker has talent and is able to score goals, but even he will find that difficult against their opponents in Group B. With his experience in England's top-flight, his teammates will be hoping that he can still find a route to goal against these European powerhouses.

Prediction: Dead last. Sorry Albania, when you get drawn into the group of death your chances of qualifying are slim. Then when you look at the pedigree of the teams that they are up against, they are going to find it really difficult to lay a glove on any of them.

Group Winner Bonus: Get a cash bonus on your winnings up to 25% if your Euro 2024 Group winner accumulator bet wins!

Check out our other Euro 2024 Betting Tips here. 

 

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