Euro 2016 Betting Preview
This year’s tournament has to be one of the most anticipated in the recent era. So much talent, both new and old, will be on show and there are 4 or 5 genuine contenders for the crown. More importantly for us is the sheer amount of betting opportunities available. We have scoured all the websites looking for the best value bets (hint, it’s not in the outright market), and here they are:
Player of the tournament
Since the inception of the player of the tournament award at Euro 96, the accolade has always been won by a player from the winning team – hardly a surprise considering they would have been the centre of attention all tournament, and played more games than most. What is a surprise is that it has never been a striker who has fired the team to victory who has won the player of the tournament. Each time it has been won by a midfielder:
Euro 96 – Sammer (Germany)
Euro 00 – Zidane (France)
Euro 04 – Zagorakis (Greece)
Euro 08 – Xavi (Spain)
Euro 12 – Iniesta (Spain)
Another thing to note is that apart from when Greece won it in 2004 (an anomaly in itself), the winner has always been aged between 26-28 – when a player is in their peak of their career. This suggests a love for midfield maestros, the heartbeat of the team, the ones who keep the game flowing; and not just a love for those scoring the goals.
The only problem with this market, is that you arguably need to pick the winners of the tournament before you can pick the player of the tournament. For that reason, we have picked a few selections based on the most likely winners (and England).
Mezut Ozil – Germany – 25/1 BetVictor
If Germany are your pick for the Euros, then the value has to be in taking Mezut Ozil as player of the tournament. As a 27 year old midfielder he certainly fits the criteria set above, and his style of play is certain to catch the eye if Germany make it all the way. With 20 assists and 8 goals last season for Arsenal, he will be coming into this tournament in high spirits and good form. An important thing to note about Ozil is his record in major tournaments for Germany. He started all the matches in 2010 world cup, at the tender age of 21, and was nominated for player of the tournament. 2 years later he was instrumental in Euro 2014, and despite Germany being knocked out in the Semis, he was named in the team of the tournament. 2 years ago he shone as Germany lifted the World Cup, starting all 7 matches and cementing his place as a German regular. If Germany do go on to win this tournament, then Ozil may just be the man to help them
Sergio Busquets – Spain – 50/1 bet365
Barcelona have just proven how important Sergio Busquets is by tying up the 27 year old midfielder to a long term contract with an eye-watering buyout clause of 200 million Euros. Not a bad endorsement when arguably the best club in the world rates you that highly. At a best price of 11/2 for Spain to lift the trophy, it’s not exactly a value bet, but the 50/1 on offer for Busquet to drive Spain to their third Euros in a row, and lift the player of the tournament accolade is certainly tempting. An argument could be made that Busquets Is not the type of player you notice in the big games, but after the media hype surrounding his contract extension, you can be sure his performances will be picked apart by the pundits. And if him and Spain both deliver, then 50/1 could look massive at the end of the tournament.
Payet – France – 25/1 bet365
Payet would be our pick for the player of the tournament after the magnificent season he has had at West Ham, and he is surely going to get noticed if he can get a few of his trademark goals from free-kicks. The only issue being here is that the depth of talent that France holds means that Payet may not be guaranteed the minutes to get himself in the running but if he starts, as many people have predicted, the 25/1 could be looking very generous after the end of a relatively easy group stage. Payet has already proven himself for his national team, scoring twice recently and his style of play will certainly make him a fans favourite. With France favourites to win the tournament, Payet could be the man in this market.
And just in case you are wondering, Adam Lallana is the English player who fits the age and position criteria of past winners (100/1 with William Hill).
Antoine Griezmann – France 11/1 with Unibet
Griezmann has been on fire for Atletico this season, and with France missing Benzema in their front line, this could be the opportunity for Griezmann to stand up and be counted. 32 in 54 for Atletico this season has certainly put his name on the map, and this could be the perfect opportunity for him to really advertise himself to the worlds’ top clubs. Not that he needs to prove himself, after scoring 7 goals in this seasons champions League, helping Atletico to the final. Another thing to note is that France have a comparatively easy group, and will face the 3rd best team from group B,E or F in the last 16 – it is certainly not out of the realms of possibility for Griezmann to have netted 5 or 6 before we even reach the quarter-final stages.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic – Sweden 40/1 (e/w) with Bet365
If anyone can do it, Zlatan can! Surely this is the thought that spurs on Ibrahamovic before every game, and we can see him carrying this Sweden team quite far in this tournament. Zlatan has been nothing short of sensational for PSG over the last few years, and you feel there’s still life in the old dog yet. The 40/1 on offer for Zlatan is surely based on the presumption that they won’t get very far this tournament. But, if they can sneak out of group E at the expense of Belgium or Italy, then anything can happen (by our reckoning they will then have to beat Portugal and England to reach the semis- something Sweden are capable of). Ibrahimovic will be looking to sell his wares on the big stage in his quest for a new club, so don’t be surprised if every game he’s involved in becomes the Zlatan show!
France/Ukraine final at 180/1
Germany/Ukraine final at 180/1
Griezmann/France double 20/1
Good Luck, and don’t forget to come back for daily tips throughout the tournament.