Wales’s new generation come up against Italy’s new generation in Group A at Euro 2020
Ryan Giggs’s team made it hard work getting to their second successive European Championships, but after beating Hungary in a winner-takes-all match in Cardiff they finished 2019 unbeaten in their last six games.
Wales’ squad is made up from experienced players in the likes of Joe Allen, Gareth Bale and Aaron Ramsey and youth, with Daniel James, Ethan Ampadu and Dylan Levitt expected to be in the 23-man squad.
Gigg’s has turned Wales into a team in the true sense of the world as was noticeable after the celebrations in Cardiff last month. They will be well-drilled and ready for big games against Roberto Mancini’s new-look, youthful Italian side and tough challenges in the form of Turkey and Switzerland.
With two games in Baku, they are looking at basing themselves out there for at least the group stages, with Giggs saying: “Logistically, looking at it, it is Baku, Baku, Rome, so rather than having Rome in the middle and having to go to Baku (twice) for us and the fans it is much better.
“At this stage, they are all tough games; Switzerland are a good team and I watched their progress, Turkey were in a group with France and Iceland and did well to come out of that and of course Italy had a fantastic qualifying by winning every game.”
Wales made it to the semi-finals of this tournament back in 2016, and with a proven winner in Giggs at the helm, there is every reason to be excited about next summer. Wales are 100-1 outsiders with the bookies, with a second-place spot in the group stage looking most realistic: they would then play the runners up from Group B, Denmark.
The favourites to win the tournament are France just ahead of England, Belgium, Germany and Spain, however, expect another strong performance from Portugal led by Cristiano Ronaldo and with a new crop of talented youngsters–the perfect mix of experience and youth.
Group A: Italy, Switzerland, Turkey, Wales
Group B: Belgium, Russia, Denmark, Finland
Group C: Ukraine, Netherlands, Austria, Path D/A*
Group D: England, Croatia, Czech Republic, Path C**
Group E: Spain, Poland, Sweden, Path B***
Group F: Germany, France, Portugal, Path A/D*
*Iceland, Romania, Bulgaria, Hungary / Georgia, North Macedonia, Kosovo, Belarus
**Scotland, Israel, Norway, Serbia
***Slovakia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland
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