REVEALED: England’s potential toughest draw in the Euro 2024 group stage, with two former European champions and a World Cup dark horse awaiting Gareth Southgate’s side in nightmare scenario
- The Euro 2024 group stage draw is set to take place on Saturday, December 2
- England will be one of the six top seeds following their qualifying display
- Trent and Bellingham can play together but can’t get in each other’s way – IAKO
The potential hardest group England could be drawn in at Euro 2024 next summer has been revealed.
Gareth Southgate’s side qualified for their eighth successive major tournament with ease last month following a 3-1 victory over Italy at Wembley.
They faced two further Euro 2024 qualifying fixtures over the past week, beating Malta 2-0 last Friday and drawing 1-1 with North Macedonia on Monday evening and are now all set for the tournament’s group stage draw on December 2.
19 other teams have also secured automatic qualification for the tournament, alongside hosts Germany, with the three final spots to be decided by the play-offs, which take place in March 2024.
The Three Lions will be top seeds next summer by virtue of their qualifying performance and Sky Sports have calculated their potential toughest group stage opponents based on those teams to have already secured their place in Germany.
England’s potential toughest draw in the Euro 2024 group stage has been revealed
They reached their eighth major tournament in a row after an unbeaten qualifying campaign
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With the current state of play, a nightmare draw for England – who are one of six top seeds for the six groups – will see them faced with games against the Netherlands, Croatia and Denmark.
Ronald Koeman’s Dutch outfit are ranked at world No 7 and reached the quarter-finals at the World Cup last year.
They secured qualification for Germany by narrowly edging out Greece for second place behind France in their group, after they beat Gus Poyet’s side in both meetings.
In fact, ahead of their final qualifying game against Gibraltar tonight, the Dutch have won every qualifying game bar their two fixtures against Les Bleus.
The toughest scenario would see England also joined by Croatia, who came third at the World Cup.
Zlakto Dalic’s side are ranked at No 10 in the world and continue to overachieve despite having a population of just 4.1million people.
They have still not secured their place in Germany, but as long as they equal Wales’ result when they take on Armenia tonight – with Rob Page’s side hosting Turkey – the Balkan nation will be there.
England’s hardest draw would see them face the Netherlands (pictured), Croatia and Denmark
Croatia came third at the World Cup last year as they continue to overachieve in tournaments
Denmark would complete a nightmare draw, with the three teams ranked in the world’s top 20
Alongside the Netherlands and Croatia, the hardest scenario for the Three Lions would see them also face Denmark.
They topped their qualifying group with seven wins out of 10 and although they picked up just one point in Qatar last year, they pushed England all the way in the Euro 2020 semi-finals.
Denmark are also ranked at world no 19, meaning the combined ranking of England’s potential opponents would be 36.
It must be noted that with the remaining qualifying fixtures taking place on Tuesday evening, plus the play-off rounds in March, this could still all change, but there is potentially a huge difference in the calibre of England’s opposition depending on next month’s draw.
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