The Coronavirus pandemic has claimed many lives while sweeping around the country, and lockdown has been enforced across the globe. This has caused a number of industries to shut down and included in this is the world of sport.
We have seen huge events called off over summer months, including the Olympics which were scheduled to take place in Tokyo. The football European Championships are another casualty, with the Euro 2020 tournament now taking place in 2021.
For the first time in its existence, the championships were going to be played out across many parts of Europe, which made it almost impossible to stage. Other competitions run by UEFA are still being debated as to whether they can continue, and if they can how that happens.
We have to wait another year for the tournament to take place, which is a big disappointment for fans. However, will any of the competing nations gain an advantage from this, that could propel them to glory?
England Could Benefit from Extra Year
England are a very interesting contender for the upcoming Euro 2021 and World Cup 2022 tournaments. We got a glimpse of the future back in 2018 when they reached the semi finals of the World Cup.
Of the 11 players that started the game against Croatia, seven were 25 or under when that game was played, meaning they are now in their peak. As things stand now, only one of the players is over 30 and more youngsters have since found a way into the team.
The 2022 World Cup was always the long-term plan for England, Russia was a stepping stone. Now, not only do they have the 2022 tournament, but they also have 2021 right before it, two golden chances to win some overdue silverware.
It is no surprise to see England amongst the favourites for euro 2021, and many new football betting sites are already offering odds to their customers on the event.
A list of the latest bookmaker offers and odds for both Euro 2021 and the 2022 World Cup can be found for those who are interested in placing bets beforehand.
Could France Suffer after Recent Success?
The past two major tournaments have seen France really excel. This is their time to shine, and the team want to be playing as often and as quickly as possible to take advantage of that. A defeat on home soil saw them finish runners up in the 2016 European Championships, but showed us that they were on the verge of something special.
They delivered in Russia back in 2018, winning the World Cup with a talented bunch of players. They know 2020 would give them another chance to shine but that has now been taken away.
We are not talking about an old squad here, but they will be one year older, and one year further away from when they won the World Cup.
France are one of the teams that would have preferred the 2020 tournament to go ahead to maintain the current momentum in the squad but that now won’t happen. Instead they have to regroup and try to come back as strong in 2021 to try and go one better than they did in 2016.
A European Advantage for the 2022 World Cup?
At this moment in time, the only focus for fans and players is getting football back in some capacity. However, when you look forward and go past the 2021 European Championships, there is a huge tournament on the horizon. This is the World Cup of 2022, which will be held in Qatar.
We usually see the European Championships take place two years before a World Cup, but thanks to the push back this time around, we have just one year between the two competitions. Could that favour the European teams who are heading to Qatar to compete?
Will those who do well at Euro 2021 find it easier to build on their performances and keep the momentum going ahead of the World Cup which is scheduled for just over 12 months later?
For teams such as England that have already been mentioned here, the 2022 World Cup is their best chance of glory with the set of players they have right now. The movement of competitions gives them a big tournament to attack the summer before that World Cup, and a perfect build up for them to use to their advantage.