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England odds to win Euro 2024: Probability of beating Spain, tactics and stats ahead of Berlin showdown

By Harry Edwards

Published: 8:19, 14 July 2024

England have made the Euro 2024 final, having come from behind yet again to beat the Netherlands in the semi-final.

Three years ago, the Three Lions were losing finalists, beaten by Italy at Wembley. It was the first final for England since the 1966 World Cup, and fans had been dreaming of the 55 years of hurt ending. They were then knocked out of the World Cup quarter-finals, when the draw was on their side, beaten by France.

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As usual, England were among the pre-tournament favourites to win Euro 2024, given a 23% chance of going all the way. But it’s been a tough watch for fans so far, with Gareth Southgate’s men only really showing true glimpses of their best form in the semi-finals against the Netherlands.

What are England’s chances of beating Spain?

According to Opta’s probability rating, England have a 44.7% chance of winning Euro 2024. Boylesports price England to lift the trophy at 23/20. The implied probability of this is 46.5%.

Latest England odds to win Euro 2024
England to win Euro 2024
Harry Kane to win Golden Boot

*Odds correct as of 11:30 on July, 11. 18+ only. GambleAware.org

England route to the Euro 2024 final in Berlin

Group stage results

  • Serbia 0-1 England
  • Denmark 1-1 England
  • England 0-0 Slovenia

England’s knockout stage opponents

By winning Group C, England set up a last-16 match with Slovakia, in which they needed a 95th-minute equaliser from Jude Bellingham and extra-time winner from Harry Kane to avoid embarrassment. The Three Lions faced Switzerland in the quarter-finals, drawing 1-1 after extra-time, before winning 5-3 on penalties.

Netherlands were England’s opponent in the semi-final, with Xavi Simons scoring first before a Harry Kane penalty and Ollie Watkins’ 90th-minute finish took the Three Lions through to the final, where Spain await.

The final will be played at the Olympiastadion in Berlin — a city where England are unbeaten in six previous visits (W4, D2), only playing more in Helsinki (8), Amsterdam (7) and Sunderland (7) without ever suffering defeat.

England key players for this year’s European Championship

England top Euros Golden Boot contender: Harry Kane

  • Key stat: Harry Kane is one of six players to have scored three goals at Euro 2024.

In terms of performances, it’s been an underwhelming campaign for Kane. Just four of the England captain’s 15 shots at Euro 2024 had hit the target prior to the win over the Netherlands, and his insistence on playing deeper has sometimes hurt England.

Yet here he is, having scored the joint-most goals at the tournament. He’s tied with five other players and only one of them is still active in the competition: Spain’s Dani Olmo, who is in line to lift the Golden Boot as things stand by virtue of the fact he also has two assists.

Kane went into the tournament off the back of a record-breaking season in the Bundesliga, scoring 36 goals, more than any other player in their debut campaign in the competition. However, the former Tottenham marksman fell five shy of equalling Robert Lewandowski’s record for most goals in a single Bundesliga season — with the Polish striker netting 41 in 2020/21.

In qualifying for Euro 2024, Kane scored eight goals from 11 attempts on target in eight games, though four were penalties. He scored four in Euro 2020 en route to the final, and all are coming in the knockout stages. He stands clear as England’s all-time top scorer, now on 66, after scoring the equaliser from the spot against the Netherlands in the semi-final.

England card magnet & top tackler: Declan Rice

  • Key stat: Declan Rice has made 18 tackles at Euro 2024, twice as many as any other England player.

England’s midfield has changed a few times at Euro 2024 so far, but one thing that has remained constant is Declan Rice. Gareth Southgate’s problem has been finding the right partner for Rice. Trent Alexander-Arnold, Conor Gallagher and Kobbie Mainoo have all been trialled, and it looks like the latter may have jumped to the front of the queue.

But, back to Rice. With the inconsistency alongside him, Rice has been a lot busier at the heart of England’s midfield, particularly in the defensive side of his game. The Arsenal man has made 18 tackles at Euro 2024 so far. Rice has also committed five fouls though he is yet to be booked.

England rising star: Kobbie Mainoo

It’s been a fast rise to the top for Kobbie Mainoo, who wasn’t even in England’s initial squad for the March international break, being added in late after shining for Manchester United in their FA Cup win over Liverpool. And the rest, as they say, is history.

Mainoo had to bide his time at Euro 2024. But after making a four-minute cameo appearance against Serbia, he delivered an impressive second-half performance in England’s goalless draw with Slovenia.

As a result, Mainoo earned his first start in the Round of 16. Since then, alongside Rice, he’s significantly improved Southgate’s midfield. Up till and including the quarter-finals, Mainoo’s pass accuracy was the best of any midfielder at a European Championship that Opta has on record since 1980 (96% on a minimum of 100 passes). He has only misplaced 11 of his 180 passes at Euro 2024 and, after the semi-final, has a completion rate of 93.89%.

England set-piece specialists

  • Penalties: Harry Kane
  • Free kicks: Phil Foden
  • Corners: Kieran Trippier

England tactical analysis and formation

England team stats from Euro 2024 so far (average per game):

  • Corners: 3.7
  • Corners conceded: 2.2
  • Shots on target: 3.5
  • Shots on target faced: 2.8
  • Offsides: 1.8

At Euro 2024, Southgate had a big decision to make. Who would start alongside Declan Rice in midfield? Trent Alexander-Arnold started there for the first two games but failed to impress. Conor Gallagher failed to take his chance in the first half against Slovenia, with Kobbie Mainoo replacing him at half-time. Mainoo went on to make the starting spot his own, starting all three knock-out stage wins.

Kyle Walker is the top choice at right-back in a back four, though he did make way for Alexander-Arnold against Slovenia, moving over to the left when Kieran Trippier came off. Elsewhere, Luke Shaw is gradually gaining match fitness but came on at half-time against the Netherlands and could start against Spain, something England legend turned pundit Alan Shearer supports as the sole change to Southgate’s team.

“If you notice, particularly when he brought Luke Shaw on [against the Netherlands], there were two or three occasions where Kieran Trippier got down the left-hand side and the ball could have come in early,” he said on The Rest is Football Podcast. “And it didn’t come in, it came back into the middle and the right-hand side and slowed it down.

“Nothing against him (Trippier) defensively but in attacking positions he didn’t get into them and make the most of them. That’s why he (Southgate) brought Luke Shaw on and I thought that was the right thing to do. It went to a three, then a four, a five at times. They played everything at times in that second half. I think in terms of the formation [for the final], I think he’ll go with the same and it wouldn’t surprise me if he went with Luke Shaw from the start and kept everything else the same.”

Shaw’s first start couldn’t be any bigger than playing in the final and facing off against Spanish sensation Lamine Yamal. Yamal is having an extraordinary tournament and will celebrate his 17th birthday in a few days. The exciting Barcelona forward has already broken records in Germany, notably becoming the youngest player ever to score in a European Championship game when he netted against France in the semi-finals.

Meanwhile, there’s a new centre-back pairing in Maguire’s absence, with Marc Guehi impressing alongside John Stones. Up till the knockouts Guehi was England’s best player at the tournament.  In the quarter-final against Switzerland, we saw England revert to a back three to compensate, with Ezri Konsa coming in to replace the suspended centre-back. However, he made way for Guehi against the Netherlands while the system was preserved.

Up front, the trio has been unchanged throughout the tournament so far. Kane, Saka, and Foden have been Southgate’s favoured three.

How does England’s squad depth compare to Spain’s?

There’s been no better demonstration of Spain’s depth of quality at Euro 2024 than Dani Olmo. The RB Leipzig man played just 31 minutes across La Roja’s opening two matches combined, not featuring at all against Italy. However, since then, he’s started three times and come off the bench once, bagging three goals and two assists to sit top of the Golden Boot standings, finding the net in each of Spain’s knockout matches. With Pedri’s tournament over, Olmo will keep his starting berth for the final.

What’s more, Luis de la Fuente was able to call upon the experienced duo of Jesus Navas — the last surviving member of Spain’s 2010 World Cup and Euro 2012-winning sides — and Nacho Fernandez, who has pretty much won everything there is to win with Real Madrid, in the semi-final to replace the suspended Dani Carvajal and Robin Le Normand. Ferran Torres and Mikel Merino have scored a goal each despite neither player featuring in more than 176 minutes, while Real Sociedad’s Mikel Oyarzabal has started just once and made five appearances from the bench but still managed an assist against Georgia in the last 16.

In short, Spain are stacked. But what of England?

For all the criticisms that Gareth Southgate receives about the timing and choice of his substitutions and a supposed lack of tactical proficiency, he deserves immense credit for the way he has utilised his squad in Germany. For starters, the switch to a 3-4-2-1 system has worked wonders over the past two games, turning the Three Lions into a much more fluid outfit. Phil Foden and Jude Bellingham, in particular, benefited in the first half of the semi-final against the Netherlands, wreaking havoc between Dutch lines. And even when Ronald Koeman adjusted to nullify this threat, Southgate had an answer, introducing Cole Palmer and Ollie Watkins to provide more dynamism and directness, as well as a threat in behind.

Palmer and Watkins, of course, combined for the dramatic winning goal, while Ivan Toney has also proven his worth from the bench in Germany with the assist for Kane’s winner in the last 16 against Slovakia and a superb penalty in the shootout against Switzerland.

“I was wondering when the changes were going to happen – 20 minutes to go, 15 minutes to go? It had to happen and the changes were right, the changes were perfect,” former England striker Alan Shearer said. “One of those changes was Ollie Watkins. What a night for him and what a night for England.”

Then, of course, there’s Kobbie Mainoo, who played just four minutes across the opening two games, but has been an unquestioned starter since coming on at half-time in the final group match against Slovenia, adding an element of grace and composure that was severely lacking in the England midfield.

Southgate hasn’t gotten everything right at this tournament and some of the early criticisms were just. But mistakes are not as important as how you respond to them and from tactical tweaks to perfectly-timed substitutions, England’s manager has come up with the perfect answers at the most vital times.

England final squad

Jordan Pickford Goalkeeper 30 Everton
Aaron Ramsdale Goalkeeper 26 Arsenal
Dean Henderson Goalkeeper 27 Crystal Palace
Kyle Walker Defender 34 Manchester City
John Stones Defender 30 Manchester City
Kieran Trippier Defender 33 Newcastle United
Luke Shaw Defender 28 Manchester United
Joe Gomez Defender 27 Liverpool
Marc Guéhi Defender 23 Crystal Palace
Ezri Konsa Defender 26 Aston Villa
Lewis Dunk Defender 32 Brighton
Declan Rice Midfielder 25 Arsenal
Jude Bellingham Midfielder 20 Real Madrid
Trent Alexander-Arnold Midfielder 25 Liverpool
Conor Gallagher Midfielder 24 Chelsea
Kobbie Mainoo Midfielder 19 Manchester United
Adam Wharton Midfielder 20 Crystal Palace
Harry Kane Forward 30 Bayern Munich
Phil Foden Forward 24 Manchester City
Bukayo Saka Forward 22 Arsenal
Ollie Watkins Forward 28 Aston Villa
Jarrod Bowen Forward 27 West Ham United
Ivan Toney Forward 28 Brentford
Eberechi Eze Forward 25 Crystal Palace
Cole Palmer Forward 22 Chelsea
Anthony Gordon Forward 23 Newcastle United