BBC pundits predict Euro 2022: Can England go all the way?


BBC pundits predict Euro 2022: Can England go all the way? – BBC Sport








Vivianne Miedema, Lauren Hemp and Marie-Antoinette Katoto
Host country: England Dates: 6-31 July
Coverage: All 31 games will be shown live across the BBC. Click here for more information

Can the Netherlands defend their European title? Will England win a major tournament on home soil? Can France finally live up to expectations?

Euro 2022 is ready to go – and BBC Sport’s pundits predict who will win, who will finish top goalscorer and which team could spring a surprise.

Will England deliver on home soil?

Former Everton manager Willie Kirk:

Winner: England

“I think their strength in depth is at a level like never before. Any starting XI from that squad would be a match for most countries and I’m sure Sarina Wiegman will get her selection and tactics right for each match and challenge.”

Former England full-back Alex Scott:

Winner: England

“I honestly believe that England are going to win the Euros. They are on home soil, have talented players and a new manager. I think it’s all there for England to win.”

Arsenal manager Jonas Eidevall:

Winner: Spain

“Spain have an excellent team. They have excellent relationships with each other, and a lot of players from Barcelona, who are used to winning a lot of trophies. They were very good in the last World Cup and were unlucky to be knocked out by the USA.”

BBC TV presenter Reshmin Chowdhury:

Winner: England

“I can’t look beyond England. It’s a home tournament and Sarina Wiegman has got them playing mostly how she wants. Player for player, they have top-class options in pretty much every position. There is something special about this group.”

Former England midfielder Fara Williams:

Winner: England

“England are in good form, have a fantastic manager and will have the home support. They have just won the Arnold Clark Cup against strong nations, Sarina Wiegman has won the tournament before as Netherlands manager and has certainly changed England’s mentality. They have so many young, talented players.”

Former Northern Ireland captain Gail Redmond:

Winner: Norway

“With striker Ada Hegerberg coming back, it gives Norway those goals and she is a difference-maker. She is a star and can take them over the edge. If they can galvanise themselves, I think they can really go far in this tournament.”

Former France defender Laura Georges:

Winner: England or France

“France are my team, my country and they have experienced players as well as young, talented players but England at home are going to be a really good host and team.”

Former England winger Sue Smith:

Winner: England

“I think the home tournament will bring pressure but may also give them the extra boost needed, especially in the latter stages. England are capable of beating anyone. They have a top manager who knows how to win a home Euros and a competitive squad with a nice balance of exciting, young talent and experience.”

England 6
Norway 1
France 1
Spain 1

What would be considered a success for England?

Alex Scott: “Success for England would be getting to the final and lifting the trophy. There is a huge expectation on them, a huge weight of pressure but the team and those players are used to that now. With the amount of investment and everything else that’s gone into the game, they should be winning the tournament.”

Willie Kirk: “They have to get to the final to be deemed a success. Wiegman knows the pressure that a home tournament brings and I’m sure the players will thrive under that pressure.”

Sue Smith: “England need to go and win something now. We got to the final in 2009. We have gradually improved and we have all the support needed to go and win a tournament.”

Fara Williams: “It would be deemed a failure if they don’t reach the final. I think they have to. If you want to show progress and the investment, then it’s one million per cent a failure if we don’t get there.”

Gail Redmond: “Winning it has to be deemed a success for England. They have got so close. It’s a home tournament so it does bring that pressure but I think the difference is Sarina Wiegman and how she handles that pressure. The tournament won’t be won in the first two games but it’s what they do after that and she’s got the tactical prowess and the know-how to be able to do that.”

What are Northern Ireland’s aims?

Gail Redmond: “It’s an uphill struggle, we know that. We know we’ll be a team that won’t have much possession but we know we can hang right in there. There would be knighthoods and damehoods for everybody if they progressed from the group!”

Willie Kirk: “It’s a tough group – with England, Norway and Austria – and I think the experience will be more important than the points. There is a chance they will lose all three games but being there will make them hungrier to qualify for future tournaments.”

Sue Smith: “It’s a brilliant achievement reaching the Euros but they aren’t going there to make up the numbers. They want to compete. Having a preparation camp for the past seven months, where players have been full-time, will certainly help. It’s going to be tough but it’s a great experience and something they can build upon.”

Alex Scott: “Sometimes when you’re the underdog and nobody has any expectation on you, you can go out there and play with no pressure. They have that fighting spirit and have some great players so it’s just about not being overawed by the occasion.”

Who are the stars to look out for?

Reshmin Chowdhury: “England’s Lauren Hemp. She is like a little Lionel Messi. She gives you joy every time she plays and she has so much about her. Norway’s Ada Hegerberg is back on the international stage and I think she will be incredible. Pernille Harder always shines for Denmark too.”

Fara Williams: “I’m most excited to see Lauren Hemp. She is a fantastic player. Ada Hegerberg is back and comes into the tournament off the back of winning the Champions League with Lyon. I’m excited to see what she can do.”

Laura Georges: “Ada Hegerberg has been missing so I want to see how she pushes the others. I think Selma Bacha from France will be a breakout star. If she plays with no pressure and shows her talent, she can be outstanding.”

Alex Scott: “You have Alexia Putellas and Vivianne Miedema. We’re used to seeing Miedema in the Women’s Super League with Arsenal but seeing her play in a Euros on home soil is going to be special.”

Who will spring a surprise?

Willie Kirk: “Iceland won’t win it, but they could leaving a lasting impression. They have a number of players scattered across some of the top clubs in Europe so they can pick up some results in what is a very tough group.”

Fara Williams: “Norway have some players who are in fantastic form. Guro Reiten has been fantastic. The only thing that might let them down is their squad depth. They have a really good starting XI so if they can keep that together, then they have a good chance.”

Laura Georges: “Watch out for Austria. They have good players at Bayern Munich and Arsenal. They were a surprise in the last Euros but they have grown as players and I think we need to watch out this year.”

Jonas Eidevall: “Norway – with the return of Ada Hegerberg and their offensive powers with Caroline Graham Hansen and Guro Reiten – are a team who can cause anyone a problem.”

Who will finish top goalscorer?

Willie Kirk: Vivianne Miedema or Marie-Antoinette Katoto

Sue Smith: Ellen White

Reshmin Chowdhury: Ellen White

Fara Williams: Ada Hegerberg

Laura Georges: Marie-Antoinette Katoto

Alex Scott: Ellen White

Gail Redmond: Vivianne Miedema

Jonas Eidevall: Vivianne Miedema

Ellen White (England) 3
Vivianne Miedema (Netherlands) 3
Marie-Antoinette Katoto (France) 2
Ada Hegerberg (Norway) 1

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