the essentials The meetings are scheduled for Tuesday, June 15th (Germany, in Munich), Saturday, 19th (Hungary, in Budapest) and Wednesday, 23rd (Portugal, in Budapest).
Germany: best enemy
And finally … It has been a few years since the famous saying by Englishman Gary Lineker is no longer true. Seven years, to be precise, since 2014 the last shine of the “National” at a major competition in Brazil – 4th star. Since then, she’s been tamed by … the blues in half of Euro 2016 and then, yes, humiliated at the 2018 World Cup (most recently in the group stage). So far that his no longer unanimous coach Joachim Löw will be eliminated after the tournament.
Past at the European Championships: Winner 1972, 1980 and 1996; Finalist in 1976, 1992 and 2008.
Qualifying round: 1st (7V, 1D; +23).
Typical team (4-3-3): Neuer (Kap.) – Klostermann, Ginter, Rüdiger, Gosens – Gündogan, Kimmich, Kroos – Havertz, Gnabry, L. Sané. /
Player to watch: Chelsea player Kai Havertz, the only winning goalscorer in the last C1 final.
Hungary: back to the future
Led by Italian Marco Rossi, Hungary qualified for the second European Championship in a row after missing the competition since 1972. Unfortunately, the 37th team in the Fifa ranking had bad luck at the draw and fell into the “group of death”. With the European front runners, it is difficult to aim for eighth place qualification.
Passed in the European Championship: 3rd in 1964, 4th in 1972, eliminated in eighth place at the 2016 European Championship.
Qualifying round: 4th (4V, 4D; -3), winner in the final play-off against Iceland (2-1).
Typical team (5-3-2): Gulacsi – Négo (or Lovren-csics), Fiola, Orban, At. Szalai, Hangya – Kleinheisler, Nagy, Szoboszlai – Ad. Szalai (cap.), Sallai./
Players eye: Defender Willi Orban. After he has made his rank with the youth categories of Germany, he finally decides in favor of Hungary, his father’s country of origin.
Portugal: a crown to be defended
Defending champions Portugal are still hungry. Like his captain Cristiano Ronaldo, 36. A new record in his viewfinder. That of the Iranian Ali Daei, 109 international career goals. CR7 is at 103 and can count on a team with the profile of a sacred customer. The Seleção, who have never been eliminated in the first round of a euro in 7 participations, can believe in their star more completely than in 2016.
Past at the European Championship: winner 2016, finalist 2004, semi-finalist 1984, 2000 and 2012.
Qualifying round: 2nd (5V, 2N, 1D; +16).
Typical team (4-3-3): Rui Patricio – Joao Cancelo, Pepe, Ruben Dias, Guereiro – Bruno Fernandes, D. Pereira, Joao Moutinho – B. Silva, C. Ronaldo (Kap.), Joao Felix./
Player in sight: Manchester City defender Ruben Dias, who was voted best player in the Premier League this season.