Next in line for the review is Group C.
Group C: Austria, Netherlands, Ukraine, North Macedonia
This is Austria’s third appearance in the Euro tournament. Their debut was in 2008 as tournament hosts and then they played at the 2016 Euro in France. They didn’t record a win in both attempts. Austria is not a country that people associate with football, it’s more of an alpine skiing country. However, in recent years, it’s clear that Austrian football is progressing. RB Salzburg is a regular Champions League team as of late and more and more Austrian players go to the German Bundesliga. Of course, their biggest star is Real Madrid’s new addition – David Alaba. This group looks like the perfect stage for them to win at least one game. But they really have the chance to even progress if they play their cards well.
This is not the best Netherlands we’ve seen. It’s clear that The #Oranje have a problem replacing the retired Sneijder, Robben, and van Persie and who could blame them. It’s impossible to replace players of that magnitude. Oranje will be missing their captain and leader, Virgil van Dijk of Liverpool, but even without him, they shouldn’t have problems with progressing out of the group. Netherlands have very good defenders and midfielders, which is the recipe for tournament glory. But in comparison with the other big favorites for the crown, they look to be a bit out of contention.
North Macedonia is an absolute debutant at any kind of international tournament. They’ve never played at the Euro or World Cup tournaments. They got separated from Yugoslavia in 1991 and are a part of FIFA and UEFA since 1994. But yet, with hard work, determination, and intransigence they are living their dream. The biggest star of the team is the ageless, Goran Pandev. He’s also the captain and the leading goal-scorer for North Macedonia. Pandev also scored the only goal against Georgia in the decisive play-off for a spot at Euro 2020. So the tournament will be the perfect arena for him to put an end to his 20-year career with the national team. Their chances of progression aren’t very big, but North Macedonia already proved they shall never be written off.
This is Ukraine’s third Euro participation and their third in a row. Manager, Andriy Shevchenko, has been in charge since 2016. And the #YellowBlue play better and better with every international pause. He’s learned from some of the best managers in history such as Carlo Ancelotti and Valeri Lobanovski. Most of the players are from the local “Ukraine Premier Liga”, but alongside them, there is a lot of quality from teams like Manchester City, West Ham, and Atalanta. Ukraine definitely has the potential to become the surprise of the tournament.
Here are the previous group reviews: