Netherlands to Paint Group C Oranje

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The Netherlands are back at a major tournament after missing the last two and they look well placed to at least make the knockout stages.

The Netherlands are hopeful Virgil van Dijk will be fit to captain the team at the European Championships.

The Netherlands failed to qualify for Euro 2016 and World Cup 2018 but have been heading in the right direction in recent years and look the outstanding team in Euro 2020 Group C which also features Ukraine, Austria and North Macedonia.

Ronald Koeman led the Oranje to the inaugural Nations League final in 2019 – they lost 1-0 to Portugal – and Frank de Boer has been the man tasked with continuing his good work after Koeman took the job at Barcelona in the summer.

Holland have the advantage of playing each of their Group C matches in Amsterdam and are 7/1 to lift the trophy.

Ukraine and Austria are 66/1 and 80/1 and have a few questions to answer after failing to advance beyond the group stage at Euro 2016.

Debutants North Macedonia qualified via a strong performance in the Nations League but aren’t expected to make a big impact at their first major tournament.

The three Group C fixtures not involving Holland will take place in the Romanian capital, Bucharest.

Dutch Set to Dominate

The Netherlands are probably the most improved European team since the 2018 World Cup and should take advantage of a kind Euro 2020 draw by dominating Group C.

De Boer’s side look solid 10/27 favourites to top the section and are 4/7 to make a winning start when tackling Ukraine on June 13.

The great Dutch teams have been renowned for attacking qualities but De Boer’s outfit lean heavily on stoute defence.

Powerhouse central defenders Virgil Van Dijk and Matthijs De Ligt were key pillars of the side which conceded just seven goals in eight qualifying matches and De Boer will be keen for them to line up from the start of the tournament.

Van Dijk suffered a serious knee injury during Liverpool’s 2-2 draw at Everton in October and De Ligt missed the first two months of Juventus’s Serie A campaign with a shoulder injury.

Their fitness could be key to the Dutch challenge because there is a lack of star quality in attack with Lyon attacker Memphis Depay shouldering much of the goalscoring burden.

Ukraine look the main rivals to Holland and deserve respect having finished three points above Portugal in qualifying Group B.

However, second place looks a more realistic target for Andrei Shevchenko’s side, who are 5/1 to win Group C.

Austria are also 5/1 but make even less appeal having lost three games in qualifying with a lot of pressure on Bayern Munich’s David Alaba to carry the team.

North Macedonia’s main challenge is to avoid finishing bottom and they are priced up accordingly at 22/1 for group supremacy.

Austria Can Make Successful Start

Austria have never got past the group stage at a European Championship finals but can get off to a flying start at Euro 2020 by justifying 8/15 favouritism against North Macedonia in Bucharest on 13th June.

There are some quality players in the Austrian squad with utility man Alaba established as an important player for Bayern Munich and RB Leipzig attacking midfielder Marcel Sabitzer attracting the attention of some of Europe’s biggest clubs.

David Alaba celebrates his goal for Austria in their Euro 2020 qualifying win over North Macedonia.

Given their ability, Austria have probably underperformed, especially when tackling higher ranked nations.

During qualifying, they took just one point from the two matches against Poland but won six of their other eight games. Two of those victories came against North Macedonia and there’s little to suggest the debutants can flip the script.

North Macedonia triumphed at home to Kosovo (2-1) and away to Georgia (1-0) in the playoffs but failed to take a point off of Poland or Austria in Euro 2020 qualifying and make no appeal at 5/1 to make a winning start this summer.

At 11/4, Austria to win and both teams to score may be of interest. That bet would have landed in the two qualifying matches between the two nations, which ended in 4-1 and 2-1 triumphs for Austria.

*All odds correct at time of writing.

An experienced sports journalist, Henry’s knowledge spans across a number of different areas, including darts and snooker.

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