EUROS: Initial team selection: final team confirmed

EUROS: Initial team selection: final team confirmed

I’ve revised my team slightly, Foden comes out and Eriksen comes in. I wanted a more certain starter and I prefer Eriksen’s opening fixture. I can then get two games out of Eriksen before swapping him for Foden for England’s easier games.

I also debated ditching Immobile and just starting with Kane. I don’t see Immobile doing an awful lot tonight and it seems like a waste of a transfer but I’m drawn in too easily to making a good start. As I’ve had Immobile from the start, if he went on to do something big tonight it would be bitterly disappointing.

Here’s a quick breakdown of the plan:

Donnarumma – pick and stick until Italy get knocked out. 3 group fixtures for this position

Spinazzola – pick and stick until Italy get knocked out. If he doesn’t start switch him before kick off for whoever does (Emerson). 3 group fixtures for this position

Alba – recently made captain, pick and stick until Spain get knocked out. 3 group fixtures for this position

Dumfries – pick and stick until Netherlands get knocked out. 3 group fixtures for this position

F Torres – pick and stick until Spain get knocked out. 3 group fixtures for this position

Wijnaldum – pick and stick until Netherlands get knocked out. 3 group fixtures for this position

Eriksen – keep for first two games and then pick another midfielder who will get a further two games before the end of the group stage (maybe Foden). 4 group fixtures for this position

Barella – keep for first two games and then swap for De Bruyne. This has to be an Italian to get two fixtures before De Bruyne comes in. If Chiesa is benched so it’s Barella for me. 4 group fixtures for this position

Depay – pick and stick until Netherlands get knocked out. 3 group fixtures for this position

Immobile – keep for first fixture, then swap to Ronaldo, maybe with Kane inbetween, then swap back to Kane. 4/5 group fixtures for this position depending on if I can hold my bottle and not bring Kane in against Croatia

Lukaku – keep for first two games and swap for Mbappe for the Hungary and Portugal fixtures. 4 group fixtures for this position 

This will get me 37 fixtures if I use 5 transfers
Or 38 fixtures and 6 transfers if I can’t resist leaving Kane out against Croatia

All of this planning can be found on my spreadsheet:

Initial team selection: getting closer to a starting 11

Having invested more time researching over the weekend, I’ve updated my team again. I’m much happier that it is closer to the team I’ll start the tournament with now. My strategy remains the same, getting the big guns in for games where they could score big and mixing this up by picking player who could go far in the tournament. 

My plan will still use 6 transfers but will get an additional fixture in for one player, making 38 appearances. 

I’ve decided to double up defensively with Italian’s. Spinazzola looks a bargain at 2.5m and if Emerson starts ahead of him, then we can swap them over without losing a transfer. I also want a keeper who is certain to start so I’m going with the premium option in Donnarumma from the off. Italy are known for being fairly strong defensively, but I’ve still got my doubts so two defensive assets are enough for me. 

I’ve taken out my Belgian defenders. Meunier runs the risk of not starting and Vertoghen doesn’t offer much in attacking returns. I’ve also read that they ship the odd goal here and there. I also don’t like their fixture against Denmark. I’ve put Dumfries in as a bit of a punt, he could get forward (if he starts) and is good value at 3m. Holland also have decent fixtures. My final defender will be Alba, he’s not certain to start and I’ll keep my eye on any developments with the squad after their friendly was canceled but I do like Alba as an option if he plays.

Moving to 3-4-3 has created an additional space in midfield. Foden comes into this space. I think England would be mad to start without him and we saw what he was capable of with City last season. England also have fairly decent fixtures. I’ve also read that De Bruyne may miss the opening fixture for Belgium, as a result, I’m opting for an Italian midfielder. Due to how the fixtures fall, Italy are the only big team who we can get two fixtures from a player before putting De Bruyne back in. I’ve slotted Chiesa in for now, but it will be whoever starts in the most advanced role for Italy. De Bruyne will then come in as soon as he’s fit to start a game.

My front three remain the same as my previous draft. The plan is to rotate Immobile’s position between Kane, Ronaldo, and Mbappe to squeeze points out of the big guns.

What’s also important about how I’ve set my team up is that I’d always have enough, at any point during the group stage to bring in two 7m strikers alongside each other (if I wanted to). This will future proof the team as we move into the knockout stages as I’ll have the flexibility to move players around without needing to make more than 1 transfer. 

Here’s my full plan for how the team will progress through the group stages and the 6 transfers that I plan. Obviously, this could all go out of the window after a couple of games but we will see how it pans out.

All of this planning can be found on my spreadsheet:

Initial team selection: game plan

Excitement is really starting to build for the Euros now and I’d imagine for most of us this will really kick in after the Champions League final at the weekend. I’ve spent the last couple of days working on a game plan for the group stage. I think it’s vital to get the explosive players in for the right fixtures, so most of my plans focus on a mixture of targetting teams with good fixtures and making sure timings are right on big name players who could do damage if I weren’t to own them.

So here is the grand plan to date. 

Transfers planned: 6
Player appearances:
37 fixtures

I’ve explained my player choices in detail below, but I’ve made a couple of changes. 

I’m torn between Krul and Cillessen and really don’t know which one will start. As a result, I’m avoiding them completely unless we are told who is going to start between the sticks. A decent alternative is Donnarumma who has a decent record for Italy.

I’ve also decide to go for De Ligt as I think he’s a fairly safe bet in terms of a starter for the Dutch. The last thing I want is to pick risky defensive assets who may not start games, as I won’t want to transfer them out early on.

I’ve doubled up with Belgian defenders, as they are one of the hot favourites for the tournament and have a half decent group. 

The rest of my team is fairly similar to what I’ve explained below. 

The crucial part of the planning process is what happens beyond this initial team. I’ve started to map this out (see images below). 

Team 2 – my first change would be to get Harry Kane in. I don’t really want to make this change against Croatia as I think this is a tough game for England but I know he’s going to be a really popular choice and I don’t want to risk falling behind. A big game from Kane would do some serious damage.

Team 3 – for exactly the same reasons, I’d worry about Ronaldo against Hungary. As a result, I’d just bring him in for Kane, as a short term transfer.

Team 4 – Ronaldo has two tough fixtures after Portugal’s opening game so I’d be happy to bring Kane straight back in. With England facing Scotland and potentially wanting a good result after a tough opening fixture, I’d also want a midfielder in. This could potentially be Foden or Sterling, depending on who starts.

Team 5 and 6 – my next concern would be Mbappe playing against Hungary. So I’d swap him for Kane. I’d then bring Kane back in for England’s final group fixture. 

This means I’d be sticking with a core of my players throughout the group stage but for me, it makes logical sense to keep the Belgian players – they’ve got a good group and are one of the favourites to lift the trophy. Before a ball is kicked I’m also happy with some strong coverage of Netherlands and Spain – given their fixtures.

I’m sure the plan will change again before the tournament gets underway but this is as far as I’ve got to date. It will change even more when the competition starts as I’m sure some of the early results will ruin my plans, as is the way with football. 

All of this planning can be found on my spreadsheet:

Initial team selection update

As I was very early picking my initial team, squad announcements are obviously going to have an impact. As a result, I’ve made a couple of changes to my side already.

Ramos out, Gaya in – I’m not convinced Gaya will start but at least he’s in the squad, unlike Ramos. I’m still undecided about who to go with here but at this stage it’s simply likely to be a Spainish defender.

Emerson out, Bonucci in – I’m not sure Emerson is going to make the final squad either now. Again I’m not set on Bonucci either but it will be an Italian defender. Fortunately, with Italy we will be able to check their starting line up before they kick off and any changes won’t come out of our transfer allowance. 

This is still very much a rough first draft, but I’ll start to map out my planned transfers over the coming weeks as we build up to the tournament kicking off. 

As a reminder, make sure you check out my fixture planner as this will be essential for planning a start 11 and when the right time would be to make changes.

Initial team selection

Having studied the fixtures and decided how to approach the competition, I’ve finally got my first draft team together. I’ll come up with a better plan as we get closer to the competition and I’ll probably plan a series of changes throughout the group stage to optimise those 20 transfers. However, as a starting point, this is where I’ve got to.

Firstly, I’d like to point out that I’ve avoided England and Croatia players as they face each other in a tough opening game for both teams. Difficult decision as I worry about leaving someone like Kane out, even against a tough opposition he could score well but if all goes to plan, this shouldn’t matter too much. I’m also avoiding French and German players for the first round of fixtures as they play each other, in an even tougher opening game for both nations.

Secondly, at the moment, I’m not looking beyond Spain’s fixture against Sweden. You’ve got to work the fixtures in this game so I personally don’t see the point in starting with Portugal players despite their good opening fixture. I’d rather get a game out of someone like Immobile, then bring in Ronaldo for that fixture against Hungary. For me, that’s a good use of a transfer. 

Anyway, here’s the logic behind each choice:

Krul (3m) – Netherlands play fairly early on, against one of the weaker teams in the competition. For me that ticks both boxes so we need a defensive asset. Krul is cheaper than all of the other keepers for the big teams so he’s an obvious choice. My only worry is if he isn’t first choice, this would be a massive pain if I went with him and he didn’t start. 

Ramos (5m) – Spain have one of the easiest groups on paper and I’d hope they would go far in the competition in general. Unfortunately, we can’t rotate every position to suit fixtures so I will need to pick some longer term players from the off. Ramos is one of them, if he’s fit enough to play and is on penalty duties, he could pick up plenty of points. As a cheaper option, I’m going to keep my eye on the left back position, Jordi Alba is a player I like but he doesn’t appear to be listed on the game yet. Potentially he won’t make the Spain squad but I’ll keep an eye on this.

Meunier (3m) – Belgium get underway earlier than most in the tournament and have a good starting fixture. I like Meunier as an option and he feels like a steal at 3m. Again, as long as he starts.

Emerson (2.5m) – appears likely to start for Italy at left back. On that basis, he offers great value at 2.5m. The beauty of picking any Italian player is that we can check their line up before finalising our teams. If Emerson doesn’t start, I’ll just swap him for someone who is. I would add that Turkey might not be a complete pusher over for Italy so fingers crossed for a clean sheet.

Vertonghen (3m) – I couldn’t decide who else to go for, but thought Vertonghen represented good value. Belgium should go deep into the competition, start early, and have reasonable fixtures. The only downside is that I don’t like their second fixture against Denmark so I’ll ponder this position further.

Wijnaldum (3.5m) – appears to start often and loves a goal when playing for his country. As with Krul, Netherlands have a weak group and get underway early on. This makes loading up on a couple of their players a bit of a no brainer. Not sure I see him in my team for the duration but happy to start with him on the basis of fixtures.

F. Torres (3.5m) – plays very advanced for Spain so could well be that holy grail of a striker who is classed as a midfielder. Love Spain’s fixtures during the group stage so should qualify easily. Amazing value at 3.5m if he can get on the score sheet.

De Bruyne (6m) – as with the Belgian defenders, they get underway early and have a good opening fixture. We all know what De Bruyne is capable of and he could well be one of the players of the tournament. 

Depay (4.5m) – again tapping into that good early opening fixture for the Netherlands. I wanted a striker from their team and Depay stands out as the main man who is likely to get on the scoresheet. My analysis of the last 9 games for the Dutch showed that he scored the most goals during those games and started 8 times. 

Lukaku (6m) – tipped as one of the top goalscorers in the competition and has a good early opening fixture. My analysis of the last 9 games shows that Lukaku was the top scorer with no one else getting anywhere near his 7 goals during these fixtures. 

Immobile (5m) – my least convincing choice for a striker as he’s not really been prolific for Italy. I’m mainly putting him in as a placeholder until I bring in Ronaldo for Portugal’s game against Hungary. It’s about as close as we get to a “free fixture” and I’m happy to use the transfer to move him on. If he were to do something big against Turkey it would make for a fantastic start for my team though. At the same time, I’m debating if this should just be Kane from the off, who could then be swapped for Ronaldo and put back in afterwards. I’ve got plenty of time to decide though.

So that’s where I’ve got to so far. My first set of transfers will be to bring in some Portugal players for their fixture against Hungary. However, as this is further down the schedule, I don’t want to start with any of them. I’ll be looking at the likes of Cancelo, Fernandes and Ronaldo after reviewing how my choices have done after one fixture.

As always, I’d be interested to hear how others are getting on with their choices in the comments below.

153 thoughts on “EUROS: Initial team selection: final team confirmed

  1. Great work on this DDT. The detail you have put into your planning is something else……. my brain struggling to take it all in at the moment lol

    1. Thanks Jd – I must admit I’m struggling to get my head around it a little bit. I just think with a well structured plan we can easily do well in the competition as most people won’t look into it in as much detail. Saying that, watch the whole plan fly out of the window after the first round of fixtures when we see how unpredictable the results are.

    1. Thanks Paul, it’s difficult when there’s so many players to choose from but it does make these shorter format tournaments quite exciting.

  2. That’s astonishing ground work Paul, hats off, their is a case for picking the best players from the off, regardless if they have tough fixtures, if you think they will go deep in the tournament, selecting player’s for one off games, then transferring out could be risky, 20 transfers, its amazing how quick you will go through them, but getting off to a good start is paramount, especially as it is only a 4 week tournament, I might stay clear of Potugals group, till I see which 2 will progress, I like Verrati for Italy, a hot head but also a talisman for the team 3 million only, aim to have my first draft team done by end of weekend.

    1. Thanks David, I thought it was important to put some early ground work in to give us a foundation to work from. I think you’re right to a certain extent but we’ve also got 20 transfers so using them wisely for me is that way forward. I’d be happy using 10 in the group stages by having a mixture of long term picks and some rotation between high scoring position. For example, I’ll want Ronaldo against Hungary but probably not after that game. I’d be happy bringing in Mbappe when France play Hungary as well. I think it’s a case of just being well prepared with transfers.

    1. Thanks Don, I didn’t either so thought I’d better put some work in to help me make some decisions as I had very little to go off.

  3. Great work DTT! Looking forward to the blog over the coming weeks and during the tournament 👍

  4. Looking at Belgium, Holland, & Spain’s groups, I think if we intend to go 4 at the back, I would double up with the Dutch in Krul/Cilleson, & M de ligt, then Ramos, Emerson, Meunier/J. denayer, in midfield worthy of consideration, L de Jong.

    1. Those certainly look like the easier groups. Very surprised Ramos is out of the squad but I don’t think he’s fit enough to play. Who starts Krul or Cillessen?

    1. He might be a bit defensive to score many but does seem to get a lot of ratings.

  5. Great write up Paul

    Another plus for Depay, Looks like he’s on penalties.

    Despite Krul starting the last 5/6 games for the Dutch that position seems up in the air. Either him or cillsson with be value at those prices. Hopefully get an answer closer to the tournament.

    1. Thanks Lee, if they say which one will start I’ll almost certainly go for them. I really don’t know who it will be at the moment though.

      1. I’m going Krul… Not only has he started their last 5 games he’s played 34 matches for Norwich this season and winning the Championship title whilst Cillessen has played only 6 games for Valencia all season.

        1. I’ve bottled going for Krul, just in case he doesn’t start. If they announce who will be number 1 then I might revert back.

    1. Yeah saves me some cash at the back if I don’t include him now. Not sure he’s fit enough to play.

  6. Is nobody thinking about lewandowski? He is capable of a hatty against all 3 teams but not seen much about him.. guaranteed goals

    1. I was also looking at him Ryan, I guess it’s initially about targeting, the earlier fixtutes, lukaku, Immobile, & Depay, play before Poland start there campaign on the 14th, he could definately be used Like Ronaldo for one games against so called weaker opposition.

    2. He’s a hard one to ignore but at the same time we can’t have them all. So I’m literally just going to ignore Poland.

        1. Simon in goal (heard he makes a lot of mistakes in la liga – concentration might be an issue), Alba (expect rotation with Gaya), Torres (rotation with Laporte, know nothing about Torres), Garcia (he’s no Ramos – vastly inexperienced but no still idea how good he is?) and no idea about right back, it must be Azpil (will he find it difficult to play in a back 4 again).

  7. Can someone explain the transfers please. I know we get 20 throughout the tourney, for example if I pick depay to start will I be able to take him out just before Portugal’s first game for ronaldo even though he has played already? Cheers fellas

    1. That’s right! I think the rule says you can’t swap for people playing on the same day, but later in the same week is 👍🏻

  8. anyone know off any leagues to join that are
    having a side bet.
    looked through all of the leagues to join there is no fees mentioned.

    1. I’ll probably join a couple on Facebook but I don’t ever run any cash leagues myself.

      1. Two I can vouch for Don are run by ‘Chris Packard’ and ‘Gary Fisher’ if you search for them in the FB groups… both well run and both prompt payers which I can confirm having come 5th in both this season out of approx 500 players in each! 🙂

  9. I think there is question marks over whether 4 of the players in that initial team selection will start.
    Krul, Ramos, Meunier and Emerson. I think it will more likely be Cilleson to start as GK for Holland as opposed to Krul. I believe Ramos is injured. Denayer I think will start ahead of Meunier and Spirazolli is probably edging starting over Emerson. For Belgium I think Castagne is likely a better pick than Meunier.

    1. Thanks Rob, you might need to refresh the page as I’ve updated my plan since that team. Ramos is out, as is Emerson and Krul for exactly the reason’s you’ve mentioned.

  10. I also think rotating the strikers when they play the weaker teams is my strategy. The obvious choice being the group with Portugal, France, Germany and Hungary. With Hungary potentially being one of the weaker sides in the tournament I will probably go with the strikers from the teams when they are against Hungary, although I do want Kane in the side (and possibly Foden/Mount) after the Croatia game. So I would be thinking the same as you, start with Immobile then switch to Ronaldo (Por v Hun), then go with Griezmann or Mbappe (Fra v Hun) and Gnabry when Germany play Hungary then keep the rest of the transfers for after the group stages. I think it would be wise to also see who is on pens for certain teams. For example, I am not convinced by Switzerland defensively but Rodriguez is on pens and a nailed on starter so maybe a decent shout to start with him for the group stages and switch him out for the round of 16

    1. That’s exactly what I plan to do at the moment, it seems like the obvious strategy with strikers being the most explosive.

  11. Really appreciate all your hard work on this, Paul.Going to take me some time to take it all in.

  12. Not sure if Vertonghen will start, a better bet might be Alderweirald.

    1. He seems to have started most of their previous games but agreed it’s a risk

  13. If trying to cement this defence before tournament starts, warm up fixtures.
    Belgium, 3rd & 6th June
    Spain, 4th & 8th. ”
    Holland, 2nd & 6th. ”
    Italy, 4th. “

  14. Has anybody thought about Danish, Polish or Austrian players for the first game before transferring in English players?

    Denmark play Finland, Poland play Slovakia, while Austria play Macedonia. I’m thinking about maybe starting either Eriksen, Lewandowski, or Sabitzer for the first games before trading them in for English players after England get Croatia out of the way.

    1. I’d had a quick look at them but wanted to focus on the big nations really. It may be an oversight from me

  15. As most of you know, I don’t get on the blog much these days and tend to do most of my conversing via FB, but I found some time today.

    Paul – Great work, as ever.

  16. Will De Bruyne play the first game? Still doubtful and then if Belgium will win their second game can expect heavy rotation once they have qualified. The third game week could be problematic once teams have qualified and would like to use their squads particularly after a long domestic season to reduce injuries.

  17. Agile a bit concerned with Holland conceding 2 goals against Scotland last night? Not great if we are aiming at them defensively early in the comp

    1. I am, it’s a tough one because they’ve got good fixtures but aren’t as strong at the back but will the stronger teams keep a clean sheet against harder opposition?

      1. I don’t think we need to read too much into that result as was purely a warm up match… no player wants to over do it and risk an injury.

        But the Dutch defence is certainly no longer comprised of Van de Sar, Van Bronkhorst, Stam, de Boer & Heitinga sadly these days!

        1. For me, the Dutch have been a good attacking team not really renowned for the defensive qualities hence why there are at a good price. The easier the group, the more relaxed the big teams are. They have more room to rotate (particularly when winning and can make 5 subs and qualified where the third round of group games are played, will Kane play Czech if England have secured two wins by that time) and their concentration may not be at the highest so could give goals away knowing they will score more than the opposition.

          In World Cup, Uruguay I remember were the only team to keep 3 clean sheets in the group stage which helped me as they were not highly owned and I owned 3 of their defence. I remember the winner went Uruguay block to France, I went Uruguay to England and finished 114.

          1. The big question is who do you think is the Uruguay of this tournament? I’m not sure it’s Italy. Spain and Holland have good fixtures but again are they strong at the back. Portugal, France and Germany in the group of death. Not sure its England either. Any thoughts?

            1. I’m thinking it could be Italy… just checked their results and they’ve kept 6 clean sheets on the bounce! Albeit not against challenging opposition it must be noted. They also do know how to be bloody stubborn to break down at tournaments!

              1. I was thinking the same but not sure I fancy them against Turkey. Got a feeling Turkey will score.

        2. I find the whole tournament frustrating from that point of view. Where are all the big names:
          Italy: Buffon, Maldini, Nesta, Cannavaro,Totti, Del Piero, Vieri
          Holland: Seedorf, Davids, Kluivert, Stam, Van Der Sar, both De Boers, Cocu
          Spain: Casillas, Xavi, Iniesta, Raul, Ramas, David Villa, Puyol, Hierro
          France: Zidane, Henry, Blanc, Thuram, Desailly, Makelele, Trezeguet
          Germany: Kahn, Lahm, Klose, Klinsmann, Ballack
          That’s just to name a few off the top of my head. Maybe I’m just getting old but for me most of the teams are lacking that star quality

          1. Agree. Let’s look at classifying players for the Euros (from the top of my head and my opinions).

            World class: Mbappe, Ronaldo, Lewandowski, Kane, De Bruyne, Kante.

            Former World class: Neuer, De Gea, Chiellini, Kroos, Hummels, Muller, E.Hazard.

            Future World class: Foden, Sancho, De Ligt, Chiesa, James, Donnarumma.

            1. Can’t argue with that classification. I thought it was just me because all the players I listed were around when I was growing up but it’s hard to imagine a generation like that again and that didn’t even include the Brazilian’s.

  18. Allrite looking like de bruyne not playing the 1st game don’t know about the next one’s

  19. Krull got to be starting as Netherlands no1 rival keeper tested positive for COVID

  20. Italy, not conceded in last 7 games, & unbeaten since 2018, I’m going 2 Italy defensive assets, the keeper + probably Bonnuci, got to have guaranteed starters, as long as you spend no more than say 47 million, keeping 3 million back to alternate grade 1 strikers, in qualifying Turkey only conceded 3 goals, they could be worthy of consideration, I was also concerned about Holland conceding 2 goals to Scotland, these players are playing for the right to be in their teams starting lineup, when the tournament begins, let’s not forget Scotland were missing six players, I don’t know how many of them were key player’s, I will definitely be monitoring Holland’s last warm game lineup & result, they practically had full strength team out against Scotland, good to see lots of guys bringing their knowledge to the table now, took me back Paul, when you were reeling off legendary names of the past.

    1. I bet once the Italy line up is announced, there will be a mad rush for Emerson. He will be too hard to resist at 2.5m.

      1. I’m waiting for that line up for a bargain Italian player. I’m wondering if it will be Spinazzola at left back but they’ve not even added him to the game yet.

    2. It’s a tough one because Turkey won’t be a pushover. I’m not really struggling with budget, it’s more knowing who to get in. Finding it very difficult but much more exciting than the season game.

      1. I think you will do well in the Euros given the detailed work you have done. The shorter competitions might suit you better as you are a sprinter – you tend to get to a good start. My game is suited to the marathon, I get off to a bad start then recover and crawl to the finish line. The long season took a lot of me so taking it easy for Euros. Leaving it late for my prep as I will to do all my research in advance and my knowledge of international football is poor.

        1. I must admit I did enjoy the World Cup, less need to play it safe and I actually get to watch some football. Who’s the Uruguay of the group stage for you then?

  21. Have you thought about switching formation to 343?
    You could go with exactly the same plan, same money left over,
    but switch:
    Alba (Spain) to Emerson (Italy)
    Vertonghen (Belgium) to Hazard (Belgium)

    1. I don’t mind Alba out for Emerson or the other Italian left back (have advantage of knowing the line up) as Alba for me has a question mark next to his name after starting 2 games for Spain since 2020.

      Hazard also has a question mark (a bigger one) next to his name as he hasn’t started a game for Belgium since they qualified for the Euros way back in 2019. Last game where he lasted nearly 90 minutes was an ineffective performance vs Chelsea in champions league. His best days look behind him.

      1. I’m certainly going to include at least 1 Italian defender, I hope they add Spinazzola before next Friday as he’s on my radar. Question marks against Alba for me now. Agreed regarding Hazard, bit risky.

    2. Potentially, I do like Alba as an option but I noticed he didn’t start tonight. Not sure on Hazard given his recent injury record.

    1. I’ve just stuck to the 50m limit as that’s what it will be when it gets underway properly, I think it’s a known issue that the budget wasn’t working correctly.

  22. If indeed De bruyne misses 1st game, who’s his replacement, Hazard not even on the bench for yesterday’s warm up game, Belgium have one game left on the 8th, he surely has to start to be considered, or are we looking at starting with Mount or Foden, J. alba on bench tonight, still awaiting prices for M.llorente & Spinazolla, & Florensi

    1. Spinazzola interests me but I don’t know why he’s not been added yet. Florenzi is listed as a midfielder which isn’t ideal. Foden could be a good option. I really wanted Alba in my team but questioning if he’s going to start now.

  23. Spain hit with positive covid test. Will have to keep a close eye on that situation eveyone! Don’t want to pick any player that has to isolate lol

    1. That makes it difficult. I might just go with F. Torres from them now. Really wanted Alba but doubts over his starting place as well

  24. De bruyne, almost definitely misses 1st game, do we look for a goal scoring midfielder to go deep into tournament, or have a 1 game punt on someone, then back to de-bruyne.

    1. Tough one, if he’s certain to miss it then it makes sense to start without him. Might be worth taking a punt on someone else

  25. Hi Paul

    I’m told by a colleague in Holland he expects Krul or even stekelenburg to start for Holland. Cillessen was left out of the friendlies and rumour is he has COVID.

    1. Krul should start. I’d heard the same, Cillessen is definitely out. My team is due an update which I’ll probably post today or tomorrow

    2. Interesting to see that Stekelenberg has been given the #1 Jersey which doesn’t mean he is guaranteed to start but is probably a good indicator that he will?

      1. I noticed he started last night but he’s not really played for them much at all recently.

        1. I have Krul in my current draft and am assuming (hoping!) they just didn’t want to risk him last night with Cilleson out and to give Stekelenberg a few minutes in case he’s needed. If I’m completely honest I don’t feel as comfortable with Krul now after conceding 2 to Scotland and not playing last night though…

          1. I was hoping for the same really. I’d be so annoyed if I picked a keeper and had to change him but I think there’s going to be an element of risk with any of the cheaper players.

            1. I read tonight that de Boer might now be leaning towards Stekelenberg after all! I really don’t like the uncertainty tbh and they don’t look that solid defensively in truth… As I’ve got £7m spare and don’t fancy a GK transfers if Krul is dropped, I’m just going to upgrade Krul to Courtois and be done with it. Will be doubling up on Belgium and Italian defensive assets on a 3-4-3 but just feels ‘safer’ than a non guaranteed Netherlands GK all things considered!

              1. Oh no really? I was set on going for Krul but I’m doubting it myself now. Where did you read that?

    1. I agree. Nice cheap route into that Italy back line if he plays. I’ve read multiple sources that seem to indicate that he will after having a good season with Roma and Emerson not playing at Chelsea. Straight into my team too 👍🏻

      1. I like the fact that we can see how they will line up before confirming our team. Shame we can’t do the same with some of the other nations

  26. First time doing an International league so forgive me if this is a silly question but when we put up our initial team on Friday June 11th are all players locked in as the first game kicks off or only Italian players?

    1. All players are effectively locked in at that point. Any transfers that you wish to make after then will deduct from the 20 transfers that you are allocated throughout the tournament 🙂

  27. Thoughts on Carrasco of Belgium for the 1st round of matches? 4 goals & 6 assists in his last 9 for Atletico Madrid. Will be playing in place of KDB in an attacking role. Will also take most of the set pieces minus penalties and is only 2.5M I think he’s a good option in an attacking squad as a placeholder for KDB’s return.

    1. He could do well, but I’ve got a cunning plan. Start with an Italian midfielder instead of De Bruyne, as you’ll get two games out of him before you put De Bruyne in. If you go with a fellow Belgian you’ll only get one fixture.

  28. I think one that has gone under the radar is Berardi – 17 goals for Sassuolo this season and 5 goals in 11 games for Italy – including a goal in the latest friendly against Czech Republic. It will be him or Chiesa who starts for Italy but I think Berardi has the edge, unfortunately Berardi is listed as a forward and Chiesa as a midfielder. For a guaranteed starter then Insigne is probably the best option.

    1. Don’t forget barella mate. Ability wise, best player out of the 3 of em. Scores goals aswell, defo in my side at 3.5m

    2. The problem for me, is exactly what you’ve said – he’s classed as a striker. If Chiesa doesn’t start I’m tempted by Barella

  29. I don’t want to take a punt on to many players, nailed on starters is key, but I like the look of zieleski from Poland, I think they can get out of their group alongside Spain, he will be the main provider for Levendowski, last season 10 goals & 8 assists for Napoli, 2.5 seems a snip, very tempted.

    1. Anyone know if the values price increases/decreases same as normal Prem games? Cheers

    2. I’m personally only sticking to the team who may go really deep into the tournament but there could be some value in picking players like this

  30. Thinking about starting with a few French and Portuguese players. I don’t fancy Germany at all.
    Portugal start with Hungary and then play Germany afterwards. France play Germany and then Hungary.

    I fancy Portugal and France to beat them both quite convincingly. I can’t see Griezmann or Fernandes not picking up points in either of those games.

    Germany look weak to me. Couldn’t beat Switzerland in the Nations League, got 6-0’d off Spain, couldn’t beat Denmark and lost to Macedonia – all recent games as far as international football goes.

    1. Yep Germany have been pretty poor over the last year or so tbf although annoyingly they can just turn up at tournaments and turn into absolute worldies! :’ (

      I’ll avoid defensive assets from this group though but the likes of Ronaldo, Fernandes, Mbappe and Greizmann are certainly on the menu especially when they play Hungary!

      1. I think that’s the problem with Germany, they usually tend to deliver when it matters

  31. Thought I’d share my final draft and group stage transfer plan 🙂
    Bonnuci, Denayer, Torres, Spinazzola
    Carrasco, Wijnaldum, Grealish
    Lukaku, Immobile, Depay.

    Donnarumma – Pick & stick. Nailed starter in a defensively solid team.
    Bonnuci – Nailed starter in the Italian centre-back position. Will be used for the first 2 matches then will be switched to De Bruyne (formation change from 4-3-3 to 3-4-3)
    Denayer – Pick & stick. Nailed starter at centre back in a Belgium team with a good group draw and expected to go deep in the tournament.
    Torres – Pick & stick. Nailed starter in the Spanish backline. Decent group draw and fairly solid defensively.
    Spinazzola – Pick & stick. Offers great value as an Italian defensive asset. Slight rotation risk at the LB position but expected to be first choice.
    Carrasco – Great value in my opinion for Belgium’s opening fixture. Will be utilised in an attacking role and will be on set pieces with De Bruyne’s absence (except for penalties) Will be swapped to B. Fernandes for the Hungary fixture and then to Gnabry for Germany’s Hungary fixture.
    Wijnaldum – Pick & stick. Nailed starter for Netherlands, in a favourable group and will be playing in a more advanced role. Good value at 3.5M
    Grealish – Pick & stick. (Depending on play time) In my opinion England’s attacking midfielder with the least rotation risk. Has been in good form, looks back to good fitness and expected to play a big part in England’s success. Foden, Sterling & Rashford expected to be rotated on the left as well as Mount & Sancho expected to be rotated on the right. I expect Grealish to get the most game time in the central role.
    Lukaku – Pick & stick. First player in my team. My pick for golden boot. Quality striker in great form in an attacking Belgium side with a favourable group draw and expected to go deep in the tournament.
    Immobile – Will be used for the opening game only. This position will be heavily rotated during the first round of fixtures. Will be swapped to Kane (for obvious reasons) then to G. Moreno for Spain v Sweden (fantastic season with Villarreal, fully expected to start & be on penalties too. Massively underpriced in my opinion at just 3M) This will then be swapped to Ronaldo v Hungary (for obvious reasons) and then swapped to Kane again for the Scotland & Czech Republic fixtures (for obvious reasons) and finally to Mbappe for the Hungary fixture (for obvious reasons)
    Depay – Pick & stick. Nailed starter and talisman for the Netherlands. Involved in everything (goals, assists, corners, free kicks, penalties) and in a favourable group.
    Initial team cost: 42.5M
    In the bank: 7.5M
    Transfers planned: 8
    Transfers remaining: 12
    Taking a bit of a risk with triple Italian defensive assets for their first 2 matches but decided to pick Bonucci ahead of Chiesa due to rotation risk and a defensive approach expected from Italy. (Especially in the opening match of the tournament which I expect will be cagey and low scoring)
    Please feel free to share any thoughts and opinions on my selections & transfer plans 🙂
    Best of luck everyone. Looking forward to it!

    1. Great plan ARB90 and a well thought out starting side. Not much can be picked of it as long as Denayer, Torres, Spinazzola and Carrasco are all certain starters!?

      Good luck mate.

    2. Looks good to me and well thought through. I’m tempted to switch to Denayer myself instead of Dumfries but it’s a bit of a lottery at the moment. Grealish is an interesting choice, I didn’t have him down as a nailed on starter at all but can’t argue with the quality he offers.

  32. That’s an impressive draft ARB90, just the worry I guess the potential damage De bruyne could do 2nd game onwards, no penalties or freekicks for Fernandez, whilst Ronaldo is on the pitch, but he always possesses a goal threat, & star man potential, I like your Carrasco pick & Grealish, are they nailed on, looking forward to tournament starting now, & all my players playing.

    1. Can’t wait for it to get going myself. I could faff with my team forever otherwise

  33. Bruno Fernandes scored twice last night, think he should be seriously considered for a place in my team.

    1. It creates a massive problem for me because the only fixture I like is that Hungary game. The problem is they could score huge points in that fixture and Fernandes could be the one who gets them

      1. I fancy Portugal against Germany as well. They seem like a much more cohesive and talented team. Ronaldo is always chasing trophies and he has one of the best Portugal teams behind him in recent years. I can see them doing well.

  34. And he got an assist lol. Personally i don’t think you can leave Bruno out, especially not for the first game anyway!

    Quick question, are the player values definitely static for the whole tournament?

    1. Yer static pricing. As Portugal’s first game isn’t until Tuesday I won’t start with them but may bring them in for the Hungary match.

      1. Isn’t Portugal’s first game vs Hungary? Can you swap out players that have played their first game for players that haven’t played their first game yet before it is played?

        I’m not sure how transfers are working for the Euros tbh.

  35. Well done dtt for putting all this together it’s a great help only just gone through the write ups and comments today as needed a couple of weeks off thinking about dream team 😂 but now can not wait for it to all start good luck everyone

    1. No problem at all David, it’s been enjoyable putting it together but I’ll be glad when it all gets started

  36. Don’t rate Holland at all tbh. They seem like they have easy group but even north Macedonia beat Germany 2-1 couple of months ago. I’m going no where near Dutch players apart from depay.

    1. I’m not sure I do either but I think there’s value to be had in some of their players.

  37. Alba given Spanish captaincy now as busquets has covid. Surely he starts now? Either him or Gaya. I’d lean towards Alba now his captain

    1. I think he probably stays in my team now as well. Surely has to start if he’s captain

      1. I am going to take captaincy with a pinch of salt, Hazard captain for Belgium but unlikely to start first game and Chiellini captain for Italy but likely to be rested for final group game.

        1. What makes you think Hazard is unlikely to start? I was tempted to put him in myself. You not think Alba starts either?

  38. Looking at some web sites, it looks like Berrardi will start ahead of Cheisa, can be rectified tomorrow if need be, Spinzzola on the other hand looks a safer bet.

  39. Furthermore, Berrardi classed as striker, that would cause a problem, as the likes of Lockatelli, & Barella are not goal scoring midfielders, better hope Cheisa starts, or plan b required.

  40. Let’s not forget, to take advantage of that extra fixture for an Italian midfielder, before De bruyne goes in, he has to play 2 games, to make it worth it. If that man is Barella fine, but remember Verrati will go straight back into the Italian midfield for the 2nd game, who drops out.

  41. Barella or Bonucci?

    If we are thinking Italy are tight at the back then shouldn’t we be looking at Bonucci? Also who is more likely to play both games? Defenders seem to be more permanent whereas midfielders work more and will be rotated.

    1. I’m risking it on Barella. One goal for Turkey would wipe out 3 players points otherwise and I don’t see them being a pushover

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