Rising Stars Of The Euro 2020 Group Stage
by Michael House (BackSportsPage)
June 26, 2021
The Knockout Stage of Euro 2020 is set with Italy, Belgium, and the Netherlands all with three wins. Throughout every major tournament, rising stars make their name known by impressing during the group stage. Let’s take a look at the players that have drawn the most attention through the first couple weeks.
The Sassuolo winger has impressed in each of Italy’s three group stage matches. He has yet to score a goal, but his impact goes far beyond the scoresheet.
Italy, as a nation, is known more for their centre-backs and central-midfielders, but with Berardi, wingers are on the rise. The 26-year-old has made a name for himself at Sassuolo and looks set for a switch to a bigger team. For example, multiple Premier League clubs, including Tottenham Hotspur, Leicester City, and Liverpool have expressed interest in Berardi.
Italy looks to be a frontrunner in Euro 2020 with three wins and zero goals conceded. Berardi and Manuel Locatelli are two of the main reasons they are so. Locatelli was the hero of Italy’s match against Switzerland, scoring a brace.
The Sassuolo midfielder is already being targeted by the likes of Juventus, Borussia Dortmund, and Arsenal. Should Italy continue to progress in this tournament, Locatelli and Berardi will certainly play a big part.
So far, Denzel Dumfries is arguably the player of the tournament. His bid for player of the tournament is helped by the surprise of how good he really is. As a result, the 25-year-old has two goals for the undefeated Dutch team.
A PSV player isn’t the first name you’d think of when discussing the Netherlands. The right-back could easily be overshadowed by Frenkie de Jong, Memphis Depay, Georginio Wijnaldum, and Matthijs de Ligt.
The Czech Republic player is already a shoo-in for goal of the tournament for his long-range strike.
Patrik Schick was already linked with Premier League clubs in January and will definitely be looked at again. With three goals, the Bayer Leverkusen forward has helped the Czech Republic advance to the Knockout Stage. Should Czechia continue to advance, Schick could compete for the Golden Boot.
Alexander Isak is undoubtedly the surprise of the tournament. A player that was hardly heard of prior to the tournament, has turned into a magician with the ball at his feet. His dribble against Slovakia stunned the sporting world.
The 21-year-old plays for Real Sociedad, but could be looking at a big move this summer.
The Dane is the only player on this list who already plays for a big team. The Spurs midfielder impressed during his first season with the North London club, and has continued to do so for Denmark.
Following Christian Eriksen’s horrific collapse, Denmark was thought to be done for. The Danes have unified behind Eriksen and advanced to the Knockout Stage. Højbjerg’s tournament started out rough with a missed penalty against to draw against Finland, but he’s now tied for most assists in the tournament with three.
Euro 2020 Knockout Stage Matchups
Wales v Denmark
Italy v Austria
Netherlands v Czech Republic
Belgium v Portugal
Croatia v Spain
France v Switzerland
England v Germany
Sweden v Ukraine