Euro 2020 is upon us and so we thought we’d put our money where our mouth is a build a Dream Team Euros XI of our own.
Some you will undoubtedly be able to do better and may even have the knowledge to compete for the £50,000 jackpot – so make sure you get involved!
GOALKEEPER: Thibaut Courtois (£4.0m)
Belgium conceded the fewest goals during qualifying and have arguably the most favourable group at the tournament.
The Red Devils play Russia first up who most expect to be weaker than they were on home soil three years ago so Courtois looks a reliable option from the get-go.
We considered Gianluigi Donnarumma (£4.0m) and Kasper Schmeichel (£3.0m) as well.
DEFENDERS: Toby Alderweireld (£4.0m), Joao Cancelo (£4.0m), Leonardo Spinazzola (£2.5m)
The same logic that resulted in Courtois’ selection also applies to Alderweireld – block picking clean sheet hopefuls from the same team is often a good tactic.
Portugal face Hungary in their opening fixture and Cancelo scored in Wednesday’s friendly against Israel to cement his status as one of the most-popular defenders in Dream Team Euros.
Spinazzola seems to have taken Emerson Palmieri’s spot as Italy’s first-choice left-back in the last few days and is very reasonably priced.
The Azzurri are unbeaten in 27 games and haven’t conceded a goal in their last eight fixtures.
MIDFIELDERS: Christian Eriksen (£3.5m), Bruno Fernandes (£6.0m), Phil Foden (£4.0m), Ruslan Malinovskiy (£1.0m)
Everything Denmark do in attack goes through Eriksen and the Inter playmaker will be licking his lips at the prospect of taking on Finland – the competition’s rank outsiders according to the bookies.
Kevin De Bruyne is set to miss Belgium’s opening game so Fernandes seems to be the premier midfield option of choice for the first week – he scored twice and assisted another in the aforementioned friendly against Israel.
English bias may be responsible for Foden’s inclusion as Croatia are no mugs but it’s difficult not to get carried away when discussing the Man City starlet – especially since he’s bleached his hair blonde a la Gazza at Euro 96.
We’ve been banging the drum about Malinovskiy for the last month so we had to pick him ourselves.
Ukraine are dark horses this summer and with Serie A’s top assist-provider – at £1.0m no less! – in their midfield alongside Oleksandr Zinchenko they could ruffle a few feathers.
FORWARDS: Harry Kane (£7.0m), Romelu Lukaku (£6.0m), Kylian Mbappe (£7.5m)
Do we really need to justify our stacked forward line?
If you believe the bookies, this trident is comprised of the Golden Boot favourites.
Mbappe and Kane have relatively tricky fixtures first up in the form Germany and Croatia respectively but the pair scored ten goals between them at the last major international tournament – hence their price tags.
It wasn’t easy to leave out Cristiano Ronaldo – a hat-trick against Hungary would punish us severely and it’s certainly not a totally unrealistic outcome.