In the lead up to a major tournament, everyone loves to speculate with regards to how England might do and Euro 2012 isn’t any different, as bookmakers Bet365, who offer free bets on the tournament, report that England odds are shortening to be eliminated at the group stages, as even patriotic punters are turned off by Roy Hodgson’s squad selection.
The squad has been named with a few surprises, the manager is in place, the captain has been announced, so now is the time to make a realistic prediction for how England might do this summer.
It is worth noting that for the first two games, England will have to do without leading striker Wayne Rooney. He will sit out against France and Sweden due to suspension, meaning that other attacking players are going to have to step up.
This has led some to conclude that England might not make it out of the group stage. Defeat to France in the opening game and Roy Hodgson’s men could have it all to do.
England certainly don’t want to be relying on Rooney come the final game against Ukraine. The pressure would then be well and truly on against the co-hosts and who knows what could happen.
For captain Steven Gerrard and England to crash out before the knockout stages, you can get odds of 7/4. It is therefore unlikely that it will happen, but the England football team often produce even more disappointment than expected.
Having said that, England are a strong team with some excellent players. They should have more than enough to progress from the group stages. It is then somewhat of a lottery when it comes to the quarter-final, semi-final and final.
Can England produce three good performance in a row against strong opposition? Well, if you think they can, you can get odds of 10/1 for England to be the Euro 2012 winners.
Looking more realistically at things though, a quarter-final or semi-final finish seems the most likely.
A decent tournament from Hodgson’s men before falling short at the semi-final stage can be backed at 5/1.
This seems to be a valid prediction too. You can picture Hodgson coming back after a decent, productive tournament and discussing how the team can move forward positively.
As mentioned though, you never quite know what to expect from the England football team.