Who will win Euros? Insiders from last four give their verdicts

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Who will win Euros? Insiders from last four give their verdicts
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BBC | Four teams are preparing for the semi-finals of Euro 2024, with Spain set to face France on Tuesday while England take on the Netherlands the following day.

Spain are seeking to win the tournament for the fourth time, having most recently triumphed in 2012.

France last won it 24 years ago while the Dutch triumphed in 1988 - and England are of course hoping to end their wait for a first European Championship.

So who is looking in the best shape for their semi-final, and who could win it all?

BBC Sport asked experts from each country for their views, and you can vote for who you think will lift the trophy at the end.

Spanish football journalist Guillem Balague:

Spain displayed three different ways against Germany.

We played with wingers, then without wingers and no striker and then finally 4-2-4 in extra time, which means we have layers. The main thing is we adapted to anything Germany threw at us. Yes we could have lost, but we were never far away from winning it either.

While we were superior to the previous four opponents but we were not against Germany. However we did not give up and got the victory, so it was a different test, one of resilience, faith in the idea, collaboration and insistence, and we came out of it well.

It was also a very physical encounter; it was the most amount of fouls in a game in a European Championship since 2016, but we showed we are not now scared of that either.

We showed a conservative streak when, while ahead, Fullkrug appeared on the scene, balls were crossed into the box and we dropped too deep. We had a team designed to keep the score; perhaps we can learn from that because being too intimidated and hiding in your own box is not, for us, a guarantee of success

Against France we know we will have to take the initiative, like we had to do against Italy, Albania and Georgia. We will have to be careful against counter-attacks, in the same way as we did against all our opponents. We are good at stopping them though, having committed the biggest number of tactical faults.

I know for France to win they don't have to play well, so it will important to be focused the whole game as they keep looking for a moment of brilliance from their front men. We will have to be careful against France's pace, with the likes of Ousmane Dembele and Kylian Mbappe.

Perhaps we are not as efficient as we should be upfront, but because we press so often, and keep shooting and attacking and creating opportunities, eventually we tend to crack the nut and I feel that will happen against France again.

We have suspensions, and Pedri was injured in the last game, but there is not a huge difference between our best player and our ‘worst’. It is a team that behave at all times as that, as a collective, and with a great flexibility, reading well what happens on the pitch.

I think we will beat France and will meet England in the final.

 

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