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Euro 2021 Betting: A closer look at the winner/top-scorer market

Euro 2021 Betting: Lukaku looks like good value
Euro 2021 Betting: Lukaku looks like good value

With Euro 2021 fast approaching we have taken a closer look at the winner/top-scorer market, to see where the value could lie when backing a team to win the tournament alongside a player to finish as the competition’s leading goalscorer. 

With a plethora of talent all present at this summer’s Championships, picking a team to win the competition and a specific goalscorer to obtain the most impressive haul is by no means an easy decision. 

However, I have decided to opt for Portugal and Romelu Lukaku at a whopping 125/1 after analysing some of the key factors. 

Star-studded Portugal hold the value in the outright market

Portugal look massively overpriced in the Euro 2021 winner betting. At 10/1, Fernando Santos’ side are sixth-favourites to go the distance, but I think it would be foolish to underestimate them this summer.

As we have seen before in 2004 and more recently in 2016, A Seleção have the ability to upset the applecart at major international tournaments, winning the European Championships four years ago alongside claiming the first ever UEFA Nations League title in 2019. 

Indeed, for years they have been a one-man band, with Cristiano Ronaldo almost single-handedly dragging his country to the final in 2016, where they defeated hosts France in extra-time courtesy of an unlikely Eder goal.

This is not the case anymore, however. Portugal have more strings to their bow, and while Ronaldo remains at the forefront of everything they do, the supporting cast are now much better equipped to contribute in both defence and attack.

Portugal Squad Depth

The likes of Joao Felix, Bruno Fernandes, Joao Cancelo, Bernardo Silva and Ruben Dias are all world-class footballers currently enjoying phenomenal campaigns for their respective club sides, and each will play a huge part in Portugal’s potential success in the summer.

Furthermore, players like Rúben Neves, Diogo Jota, Renato Sanches, Pedro Neto, Raphael Guerreiro et al all contribute to a phenomenally talented squad, while striker Andre Silva is currently enjoying the season of his career with Eintracht Frankfurt having scored a colossal 19 goals in the German top-flight; second only to Robert Lewandowski and level with Erling Haaland in the Bundesliga’s goalscorer chart as things stand. 

Defensively, Portugal have been frighteningly good in recent years. They have conceded only four goals in their previous 10 games since November 2019, while their form since the 2018 World Cup is astonishing - losing just twice throughout the last three years.

Games since the 2018 World Cup (inc. friendlies)

Played: 24
Won: 15
Drawn: 7
Lost: 2
Goals scored: 54
Goals conceded: 16

They enter Euro 2021 as one of the most in-form international teams on the continent, with a squad packed full of immense talent. The true test will come with how they fare in the obligatory ‘group of death’, where they’ll pit their wits against Germany, France and Hungary before the knockout phase is introduced at the end of June.

This of course makes the European champions’ jobs a lot trickier on the face of it, though one glance at their immense squad-depth provides you with all the confidence you need that they have what it takes to overcome both of those sides and qualify for the knockout stages - especially as there is also an opportunity for the four best-performing nations who finish third in their respective groups to also make it through to the last-16.

With all things considered, Portugal are certainly an appealing prospect this summer and I’m confident in their chances of retaining their crown as kings of the continent. 

Euro 2021 betting

Penalty-taking Lukaku can outscore his peers

Lukaku’s period in England was a turbulent one. After successful seasons spent with West Brom and Everton his career in the Premier League was brought to a fairly abrupt end thanks to an inconsistent stint at Manchester United. While he actually managed to score an impressive amount of goals for the Red Devils - 42 in 96, to be precise - he struggled to be embraced by the club which led to his eventual departure in 2019. 

Since joining Inter Milan two years ago, though, Lukaku has flourished. He has been a consistent threat in front of goal for the San Siro titans and at the time of writing has scored 58 times in just 84 outings in all competitions. Since leaving Old Trafford, the 27-year-old has become one of the best goalscorers in Europe, and it hasn’t just been limited to club football. 

He is already his country’s all-time leading goalscorer with 57 goals to his name - 25 ahead of Eden Hazard’s tally, who is second in the list with 32. Expect that figure to rise into three-figure territory by the time his career reaches its end. 

Lukaku has pedigree at major tournaments, too. At the 2018 World Cup he scored four goals in six games, while back at Euro 2016 he managed two in five as Belgium were largely disappointing throughout and succumbed to Wales at the quarter-final stage. This summer, Belgium are 5/1 joint-favourites - alongside England - to win Euro 2021. 

It is clear to see why when you take one look at their star-studded squad which includes the likes of Lukaku; the best midfielder in world football in Kevin De Bruyne, Yannick Carrasco and the Hazard brothers among many others. With so much creativity pulsating through their squad, service to Lukaku certainly will not prove hard to come by. 

This is probably why the ex-Chelsea striker has been priced up among the favourites to win the Golden Boot in the summer. Lukaku is second-favourite behind Harry Kane at 8/1 with several firms due to how well he is performing for a title-focussed Inter Milan this season, alongside the fact that he will be spearheading the attack of one of the most talented teams featuring at the tournament. 

He is also Belgium’s designated penalty taker, converting his last two in the Nations League wins over Iceland and England back in October, which is another important factor worthy of consideration when backing a player to finish as the competition’s leading scorer. 

Belgium heavily fancied for the knockouts

Belgium are also by far the strongest team in their qualifying group for Euro 2021, which features themselves alongside Denmark, Russia and Finland. They are priced as short as 8/11 to win Group B and thus qualify for the last-16, and you have to feel confident in Lukaku’s ability to score a decent amount of goals during the tournament’s group phase considering the Red Devils’ opponents.

At the World Cup in 2018, Lukaku scored all four of his goals during the group stage against Panama and Tunisia - netting a brace in each game. He was quiet from then on in, registering just one assist in the 2-1 quarter-final win over Brazil, but had done enough early on to remain in the mix for the Golden Boot; in the end losing out to Harry Kane who netted six goals as England reached the semi-finals. 

But he will enter this summer’s European Championships having scored seven goals in qualifying, which bearing in mind he only played five of the national team’s ten games in Group I, is a hugely impressive return. Alongside his glistening form at club level, should it remain from now until the end of the campaign, Lukaku will be bursting with confidence at Euro 2021, ready to leave his mark on the competition in one way or another and I predict him to do just that as far as goals are concerned.

Combine that with Portugal to win the whole thing, and you’ve got yourself an extremely tasty looking bet at mouthwatering odds.

Euro 2021 outright betting
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