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Who will win Euro 2024? Our writers make their predictions

The wait for the Euros is almost over but who will be celebrating on July 14?

The European Championships kick off on Friday night with Scotland taking on hosts Germany. Image: DC Thomson.
The European Championships kick off on Friday night with Scotland taking on hosts Germany. Image: DC Thomson.

A month-long footballing spectacle is almost upon us but who will emerge victorious at Euro 2024?

England, France and hosts Germany are the pre-tournament favourites but who will be celebrating on July 14?

The tournament kicks off on Friday night with Scotland taking on Germany in Munich.

Could a famous victory and a major upset be on the cards?

We have asked our team of writers what they are expecting to happen in Germany.

How will Scotland get on at Euro 2024?

Andy Skinner: I think they will reach the last-16. I fancy Scotland to perform strongly in their group and create history. Going any further than that involves a huge amount of luck with the draw, but I’ll happily take any knock-out football.

Paul Third: Ah, the old heart versus head debate. I’d love to say for the first time in my life this could be the year but I fear it’ll be the tried and trusted glorious failure. The Germans, as poor as they have been, will win the group and I fancy Hungary for second. That leaves Steve Clarke’s side to duke it out with Switzerland for third. I’d love to be wrong though.

Not make it out the group? You’re having a giraffe. From left, Ryan Jack, Liam Cooper, Andy Robertson, Lawrence Shankland and Kenny McLean enjoy a visit to the Blair Drummond Safari and Adventure Park ahead of Euro 2024. Image: PA.

Sean Wallace:  Steve Clarke’s squad will make history by becoming the first Scotland squad to qualify from the group stages of a knock-out tournament. I’m backing them to finish runners-up in the group behind hosts Germany. Scotland will then exit in the last 16.

Callum Law: Without wishing to be a negative Norman, I find it hard to see us progressing out of the group. Facing Germany in the opening game will be a great occasion for Scotland, but it is clearly a very difficult assignment. Switzerland over many years have been underrated and possess a nous that we lack when it comes to getting the job done at tournaments. They have got out of their group in the last two European Championship and the last three World Cups. Hungary sauntered through qualification and also appear to be a very capable side, while the absence of Lyndon Dykes and Aaron Hickey further hampers Scotland’s chances of progression. It would be no great surprise to me if we finish bottom of our group like at Euro 2020.

Paul Chalk: Friday’s mouth-watering dream date in Munich against hosts Germany will take care of itself. It is just great to be centre stage – Scotland have earned their place in these finals. Yet, I am already casting my eyes to next Wednesday’s showdown with Switzerland in Cologne. If Scotland can defeat the Swiss then they should feel comfortable about adding at least one point against Hungary to take them into an historic knockout round for the first time at a major finals. After that, it looks like Spain, Italy or Croatia from Group B would be waiting, so that would be as attractive as it would be challenging for Steve Clarke’s men should they reach the last 16.

Ryan Cryle:  I must be one of Steve Clarke’s “negative Normans”, as I can’t see Scotland – with a lack of goals in the team, and also conceding a lot of late – getting out of a group containing Germany and Switzerland.

Don’t come home too soon: Scotland head coach Steve Clarke at Glasgow Airport. Image: SNS.

Who is going to win Euro 2024? 

AS: France. They have re-emerged as a major force in major tournaments and I can’t see them being stopped. Having been a whisker away from claiming the last World Cup they will be determined to triumph in this tournament.

PT: I’m torn between two in France and Spain but I think the French will edge it. England have a very good squad but their midfield is the weak link for me and I think when the leading nations go head to head that could prove pivotal.

Allez les Bleus: Could Kylian Mbappe fire France to glory in Germany? Image: Shutterstock.

SW: Portugal. This will surely be Ronaldo’s final Euro finals and he will be driven to add to Portugal’s 2016 Euro triumph. However Portugal are no one man team – they have star performers like Bruno Fernandes and Goncalo Ramos. Portugal won all 10 of their Euro 2024 qualifying group games – scoring 36 and conceding only twice. They are in red-hot form.

CL: France have been the best European side in the last six years or so and it was a shock they didn’t progress beyond the last 16 at Euro 2020, but they can go all the way this time. Hosts Germany have had a poor time of it in recent tournaments, but they can come good again. If France and Germany win their groups they will be in opposite halves of the draw and that could be the final line-up.

PC: England are top of the bookies’ lists largely down to money placed on them by their patriotic fans. A penalty shoot-out away from beating Italy in the previous competition’s final suggests they’re serious contenders. Germany, power-charged by their passionate fans, can go deep and should be considered as genuine contenders, while Roberto Martinez’s Portugal, with Ronaldo here for the last time surely, will be dangerous as will holders Italy. However, the more I read and hear about France and their wealth of talent which reaches far beyond their starting 11, suggests they will be the team to beat.

Another year of hurt or will 2024 be England’s year? Image: Shutterstock.

RC: Hosts Germany. Bayern Munich aside, it was a great (if long) season for German club sides, with Bayer Leverkusen and Borussia Dortmund reaching European finals. With Julian Nagelsmann at the tiller, and talent like Florian Wirtz in their ranks, on home soil, the Germans look formidable.

Germany could make the most of home advantage – if they can overcome Scotland. Image: Shutterstock.

Who will be the dark horses of the tournament? 

AS: Georgia. Although they needed the play-offs to progress, I get the sense they are a nation on the rise and in Khvicha Kvaratskhelia, they have a player who is a threat to anyone. Maybe it will help Scotland explain some of their struggles they have had against them over the years.

PT: Can you call Portugal dark horses? Surely this is the last hurrah for Cristiano Ronaldo at 39 but he’s like the energizer bunny who never seems to stop so you can’t rule out another World Cup appearance in two years’ time.  Diogo Jota, if fit, gives them an additional threat. They have the talent to go far in the tournament.

Can Cristiano Ronaldo inspire Portugal to glory? Image: Shutterstock.

SW: Albania. They are huge underdogs but teams will underestimate them at their peril. Albania topped their qualifying group with an effective tactic of defending deep and hitting with fast counter-attacks. Former Aberdeen midfielder Ylber Ramadani, now at Italian top flight Lecce, is a key component of their starting line-up.

CL: Whether you could class Portugal as dark horses is up for debate, but their squad is full of quality players and although some of them may be ageing they could still be good enough to lift the trophy as they did in 2016. Teams like Austria and Turkey are often talked up before tournaments and have seldom delivered, maybe it’s their turn to shine on the big stage, although the Austrians appear to have a tricky group which contains France, Netherlands and Poland.

PC:  I have heard there’s real optimism around Turkey’s chances. They are in Group F with Portugal, the Czech Republic and Georgia, so you’d expect a safe route into the last 16, then who knows? There’s also lots of hype around Scotland’s Group A rivals Switzerland and Hungary, so their Saturday showdown will be fascinating to watch as we consider our chances along with theirs.

RC: Do Croatia count as a dark horse? I always hope for some emotional fairytale reason for a team to perform well at a major tournament, and this summer’s Euros being playmaker extraordinaire Luka Modric’s international swansong means it would be fitting for him to lift the trophy.