Turkey Euro 2020: Team News, Odds & Predictions

Turkey Euro 2020: Team News, Odds & Predictions

Turkey are one of the dark horses going into Euro 2020, with Şenol Güneş’ team having beaten the likes of Holland and Norway ahead of the delayed tournament. Ranked at 29 in the FIFA rankings, Turkey have a good chance of reaching the knockout stage, having been drawn in Group A, alongside Italy, Wales and Switzerland. This guide will take an in-depth look at the Turkish team, including their standout players. We will also take a closer look at their chances at Euro 2020 and appealing betting markets.

Turkey History

Turkey has little recent form of history at major tournaments. They finished in a surprsie third place at the 2002 World Cup, having previously not qualifed for the event since 1954. Meanwhile, they failed to make it out of the group stage at Euro 2016. However, Turkey did surprise many when they reached the semi-finals at Euro 2008, before eventually coming unstuck against Germany. Euro 96, held in England, was the first time in which Turkey competed in the European Championships, before reaching the quarter finals four years later. The team missed out on the tournament in both 2004 and 2012.

How Turkey Qualified for Euro 2020

Turkey qualified for Euro 2020 thanks to a record of just one defeat in 10 in Group H. The Crescent-Stars were handed a relatively tough task, having been drawn against France and Iceland, among others. However, their strong defensive effot helped them throughout, with Turkey having conceded just 3 goals during their entire campaign. Beskitas’ on-loan striker Cenk Tosun scored five goals during qualifying, the most of any Turkish player. Turkey’s standout qualifying result came against 2018 World Cup winners France. Goals from Kaan Ayhan and Cengiz Ünder helped Turkey to a 2-0 win at the Konya Büyükşehir Stadium in June 2019. Turkey’s only defeat during qualifying came away in Iceland, where they lost 2-1.

Turkey in Group A

While Italy are regarded as the favourites in Group A, Turkey will be quietly confident of giving a good account of themselves. Wales and Switzerland will be no pushovers, however Turkey have every reason to think that they can claim positive results against the duo. Turkey get their campaign underway against Italy, with the match kick starting Euro 2020 on June 11 in Rome. A draw or win here would set them up nicely to reach the round of 16. The following is how Turkey’s Group A fixtures look ahead of the tournament:

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Turkey Euro 2020: Odds & Predictions

Not a great deal of punters will place outright bets on Turkey to win Euro 2020, however many will back them when they take on Wales and Switzerland in Group A this summer. Ahead of the tournament getting underway, Turkey’s odds look like this with the following bookmakers:

William Hill50/1

Elsewhere, you can bet on Turkey qualifying from Group A at odds of 8/15 with 888Sport. This is as opposed to odds of 6/5 on the team failing to reach the knockout phase of the tournament. In terms of another long shot, you can back Lille’s veteran striker Burak Yilmaz to win the golden boot award at odds of 80/1 at William Hill.

The Manager

68-year-old Şenol Güneş is in his second spell in charge of the Turkish national team, having managed them between 2000-2004 previosuly. The veteran coach took over for the second time in February 2019, having signed a four year deal. His first match in charge for the second time came in a 2-0 win over Albania in a Euro 2020 qualifier.
Güneş has spent the majority of his coachin career in Turkey, having led the likes of Trabzonspor and Beskitas. He won his first title with Beskitas in 2016, before helping the team in retaining the title a year later. Güneş also had a two-year spell in South Korea with FC Seoul, the only time he has managed outside of Turkey.

Standout Players

AC Milan midfielder Hakan Çalhanoğlu tends to provide the majority of the creativity for Turkey, with the 27-year-old having already made over 50 appearances at international level. The Turkish defence is strong, with Leicester City’s Çağlar Söyüncü, Liverpool’s Ozan Kabak and Juventus’ Merih Demiral providing coach Güneş with some excellent options in this area of the pitch. Despite having hardly played for Leicester in the Premier League this season, winger Cengiz Ünder is one of Turkey’s best young talents. Güneş’ latest squad for pre-tournament friendlies against Azerbaijan, Northern Ireland and Moldova included five potential debutants, including Besiktas full-back Rıdvan Yılmaz.

Turkey’s Strengths & Weaknesses

Throughout their Euro 2020 qualifying campaign, Turkey made a name for themselves as being a team that were difficult to break down. While matches since then have not been so impressive in this area, having conceded three goals against lowly Latvia, Turkey are still a team that will be confident in their ability to keep clean sheets. However, at the other end of the pitch, they do lack a recognised goalscorer. Veteran striker Yilmaz has 20+ international goals, however he could find things difficult, especially against a tough Italian team.

Our Prediction for Turkey at Euro 2020

Given their improvements over recent years, it would come as no surprise should Turkey make it through to the Round of 16 at Euro 2020. Despite having been drawn against former winners Italy in Group A, matches against Wales and Switzerland represent good opportunities to claim wins. Their lack of firepower in attack is probably what will stop them going any further than the first knockout round, however a quarter final spot is not inconceivable. The fact that Turkey play their final two Group A fixtures in Azerbaijan could also be beneficial to the team.

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