Euro 2016 draw: Guide to the 24 finalists in France

Thomas Muller, Cristiano Ronaldo, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Andres Iniesta and Paul Pogba

The Euro 2016 groups and fixtures were decided on Saturday.

Each qualified nation were assigned to one of four potsexternal-link for the draw according to their Uefa coefficient ranking, which is based on all competitive results since September 2010.

Which of the finalists is "practically the finished article", and which is "as interesting as an early morning trip to Ikea"?

Group A


Euro 2016 prospects: France were the last host nation to win the title, in 1984, and are among the favourites this time. With a dynamic and athletic midfield, allied to verve and pace in a three-man front line, they can be electric on the counter-attack.

Coach Didier Deschamps has brought unity to a squad riven by unrest for years; however, the blackmail case which has pitted striker Karim Benzema and attacking midfielder Mathieu Valbuena on opposite sides could yet undermine the team's chances.

France 'win' qualifying group
France played home and away friendly matches against the five teams in qualifying Group I as part of a Uefa initiative to better prepare host nations for tournaments.
Based on those results, France would have won the group by two points from Portugal (W7 D2 L1).

Euro pedigree: Winners in 1984, as hosts, and 2000. This is their seventh successive Euros finals.

Key player: Blaise Matuidi. There are more celebrated French players, but 28-year-old Matuidi is the driving force in midfield, breaking up the opposition's play and springing forward with inexhaustible energy.

Deschamps has said the Paris St-Germain player is the "first name on the team sheet".

Premier League players: Hugo Lloris (Tottenham), Olivier Giroud, Laurent Koscielny, Mathieu Debuchy (all Arsenal), Morgan Schneiderlin, Anthony Martial (both Manchester United), Yohan Cabaye (Crystal Palace), Bacary Sagna, Eliaquim Mangala (both Manchester City), Moussa Sissoko (Newcastle), Mamadou Sakho (Liverpool), Kurt Zouma (Chelsea).

Who's the boss? Deschamps, 47, led the team to the World Cup quarter-finals in 2014, where they lost 1-0 to Germany. As a player, he captained France to victory at the 1998 World Cup and Euro 2000.


Euro 2016 prospects: Romania possess the disciplined team ethic and strong defence that was characteristic of Greece's shock Euro 2004 triumph.

Nonetheless, national coach Anghel Iordanescu is not fooled by his side's fairly lofty world ranking of 16th - or the fact they had the best defensive record in qualifying, instead bemoaning the lack of players based in Europe's top leagues.

How they qualified: Dourly, as unbeaten Group F runners-up to Northern Ireland. Romania endured a national-record goal drought of 428 minutes which included a run of four straight draws in the second half of the campaign, but they only conceded twice in their 10 matches.

Euro pedigree: They reached the quarter-finals in 2000 by beating England with a last-minute penalty, conceded by Phil Neville. It is their only victory in 13 European Championship matches.

Vlad Chiriches
Vlad Chiriches joined Napoli in July 2015 on a four-year deal

Key player: Vlad Chiriches. After two unconvincing seasons with Tottenham, the 26-year-old centre back is finding it equally difficult to cement a first-team place at Napoli, but he is an integral part of Romania's redoubtable defence.

Premier League players: Costel Pantilimon (Sunderland), Florin Gardos (Southampton).

Who's the boss? The world-weary Anghel Iordanescu was appointed for the third time in October 2014; he initially turned down the role but was persuaded of the need for his experience.

Iordanescu, 65, guided Romania to three successive major tournaments in the 1990s and was also in charge from 2002-04.

He quit football a few years later and served as a senator between 2008 and 2012.


Euro 2016 prospects: The most unfashionable side to qualify, and rank outsiders with Northern Ireland. The influence of their Italian coach is clear - they are organised, sit deep and frustrate the opposition, hoping to snatch a goal from set-pieces or long shots.

They stifled Portugal in qualifying, winning 1-0 away and only losing the return game in stoppage time.

How they qualified: They only scored seven goals - five of them against bottom side Armenia. That does not include their 3-0 win in Serbia, awarded by the Court of Arbitration for Sport after a riot.

That decision, and the shock win in Portugal, saw them finish second in Group I, two points ahead of Denmark.

Didier Deschamps (left) with Gianni de Biasi
France boss Didier Deschamps shares a joke with Albania manager Gianni de Biasi during the Euro 2016 draw

Euro pedigree: Debutants.

Key player: In a workmanlike side, Basel midfielder Taulant Xhaka, 24, stands out for his technical ability and confidence on the ball. A former Swiss under-21 international, he's the elder brother of Switzerland's Granit Xhaka.

Premier League players: None.

Who's the boss? This is not the first time Italian Gianni de Biasi, 59, has found unexpected success with minnows - he led Italian club side Modena to Serie A in 2002 after back-to-back promotions.

His last club job was with Udinese, who sacked him in 2010.


Euro 2016 prospects: The Swiss credit rating is fairly high despite the national team having never reached the knockout stage at a European Championship.

They progressed to the last 16 at the 2014 World Cup and their regular starting line-up all play for top-flight clubs in Germany, England or Italy.

What they desperately lack is a dead-eyed striker.

How they qualified: Beaten in their first two games, the Swiss recovered to comfortably finish as Group E runners-up behind England. Four straight home wins yielded 17 goals.

Euro pedigree: Underwhelming. They've finished bottom of their group in all three previous appearances, but did at least earn their first victory at the ninth attempt when co-hosts in 2008.

Key player:

Xherdan Shaqiri
Stoke's Xherdan Shaqiri, 24, is Switzerland's key creative force and also top scored in qualifying with four goals

Premier League players: Xherdan Shaqiri (Stoke), Gokhan Inler (Leicester), Valon Behrami (Watford).

Who's the boss? Bosnian-Croat Vladimir Petkovic, 52, is a naturalised Swiss citizen who took over from Ottmar Hitzfeld after the 2014 World Cup.

Multi-lingual Petkovic worked for a homeless charity between 2003 and 2008 while coaching lower league Swiss clubs in the evenings.

Group B


Euro 2016 prospects: After the 2014 World Cup debacle comes hope that England's youthful squad have learned some valuable tournament lessons.

Unlike Euro 2012, when Roy Hodgson took charge a month prior to the finals, he has had since September to plan ahead, with England having breezed through qualifying.

He used 33 players en route to France; there is emerging talent in the squad but Euro 2016 may come too soon.

How they qualified: Group E winners. England were the only nation to qualify with a 100% winning record, the first time they have done so in a European Championship qualifying campaign.

A tally of 31 goals - seven from Wayne Rooney - was second only to Poland's 33.

Euro pedigree: Third of the four finalists in 1968, England were also semi-finalists as hosts of Euro 96.

Statistically, Euro 2012 was England's best showing on foreign soil at the continental tournament: they were unbeaten aside from a quarter-final exit on penalties against Italy.

Key player:

Wayne Rooney
Euro 2016 will be the sixth major tournament for England's record goalscorer Wayne Rooney, but the 30-year-old's first as captain

Who's the boss?

This will be 68-year-old Roy Hodgson's third major tournament as England boss as he looks to secure an extension to a contract that expires after Euro 2016. Hodgson has managed 14 club sides and four national teams.


Euro 2016 prospects: Winless at the 2014 World Cup, Russia's fortunes have improved since Fabio Capello's sacking in July this year. Replacement Leonid Slutsky reinforced the defence with players from Champions League regulars CSKA Moscow, who he also manages.

How they qualified: They claimed only eight points from six games under Capello but won their remaining four with Slutsky at the helm, including a vital win over Sweden to pip them to automatic qualification.

Euro pedigree: Winners as the Soviet Union in 1960, and finalists in 1964, 1972 and 1988. A run to the semi-finals in 2008 is their best performance since the fall of the Iron Curtain in 1991.

Key player: Sergei Ignashevich. Russia's rock is now 36 but he remains vital. The CSKA Moscow defender helped Russia keep five clean sheets in the nine qualifiers he played in.

Premier League players: None.

Who's the boss? Leonid Slutsky was rewarded for rescuing Russia's Euro 2016 campaign with a contract until after the finals.

He is no stranger to playing the hero - aged 19 he rescued a cat stuck up a tree; unfortunately he fell, suffering a knee injury which ended his playing career.external-link


Euro 2016 prospects: After a 58-year wait to play in a major tournament, Wales will not be going just to make up the numbers. Gareth Bale's goals propelled them to France, but captain and defensive rock Ashley Williams is equally as important.

The Welsh FA's Together Stronger slogan epitomises their brilliant team spirit.

How they qualified: They lost just once, away to Bosnia-Herzegovina, and conceded four goals - only Romania, England and Spain let in fewer. Bale and Aaron Ramsey scored nine of Wales' 11 goals.

Euro pedigree: Debutants at a 'finals'. Reached the quarter-finals in 1976, when only the semi-finals onwards were regarded as the finals.

Key player:

Gareth Bale
Real Madrid forward Gareth Bale, 26, scored seven of Wales' 11 qualification goals

Things aren't going quite so well at club level, but the world's most expensive player can do no wrong for Wales. He recently stopped driving luxury sports cars as they were causing him hamstring problems.external-link

Premier League players: Joe Allen (Liverpool), James Chester (West Brom), James Collins (West Ham), Ben Davies (Tottenham), Wayne Hennessey and Joe Ledley (both Crystal Palace), Andy King (Leicester), Aaron Ramsey (Arsenal), Neil Taylor and Ashley Williams (both Swansea).

Who's the boss? Chris Coleman took over in difficult circumstances following the death of Gary Speed in 2011.

Booed regularly at the start of his tenure, with a 6-1 World Cup qualifying defeat in Serbia the nadir of poor results early on, Coleman is now in talks to extend his contract beyond 2016.


Euro 2016 prospects: Slovakia will be appearing at just their second major tournament in 11 attempts since gaining independence in 1993.

They reached the last 16 at the 2010 World Cup, helping to knock out Italy in the group stages. They also beat Spain in qualifying for Euro 2016 so are not afraid to mix it with the big boys.

How they qualified: Slovakia won their first six qualifiers, including a 2-1 home victory against holders Spain. However, one point from their next three matches left them level on points with Ukraine before a 4-2 win over Luxembourg sealed second spot.

Euro pedigree: This is their first appearance.

Key player:

Marek Hamsik
Napoli and Slovakia captain Marek Hamsik is the national side's driving force. The attacking midfielder, 28, top scored in qualifying with five goals

Premier League player: Martin Skrtel (Liverpool).

Who's the boss? Former Czechoslovakia international Jan Kozak was appointed in July 2013. The 61-year-old had previously managed several Slovakian league clubs.

Group C


Euro 2016 prospects: They may be joint favourites with hosts France, but the world champions are not currently looking like world beaters.

Germany scored 36 goals in qualifying for the World Cup in Brazil, but just 24 to reach Euro 2016.

Joachim Low on Germany's form
"We are like a boxer at the moment. We're landing punches but they're not knocking the opponent out."

How they qualified: A 2-0 defeat by Poland was their first in a qualifying campaign for nearly seven years. Another loss in Ireland meant they only narrowly topped Group D. Average possession of 67% was the joint-highest in qualifying, with Spain.

Euro pedigree: Winners in 1972, 1980 (both as West Germany) and 1996. They reached the semi-finals in 2012, when they lost 2-1 to a Mario Balotelli-inspired Italy.

Key player: Thomas Muller. Without the retired Miroslav Klose, the goalscoring onus falls on Bayern Munich's brilliant forward.

Known as the Raumdeuter, or 'space investigator', he top scored for Germany with nine goals in nine qualifiers.

Premier League players: Emre Can (Liverpool), Mesut Ozil (Arsenal), Bastian Schweinsteiger (Manchester United).

Who's the boss? Joachim Low masterminded Germany's first trophy since Euro 96 by winning the 2014 World Cup after years of careful planning from academy level upwards.

Euro 2016 marks a decade in charge and he has a new contract to 2018.


Euro 2016 prospects: They had a good defensive record in qualifying (conceding five times in 12 games), and will try to frustrate opponents and capitalise on the flair provided by Yevhen Konoplyanka and Andriy Yarmolenko.

How they qualified: After five defeats in qualifying play-offs, they finally held their nerve to beat Slovenia 3-1 on aggregate - with Yarmolenko netting twice. They finished third in Group C, failing to score against automatic qualifiers Spain and Slovakia.

Euro pedigree: This is the first time Ukraine have qualified. Co-hosts in 2012, they went out in the group stage. The majority of the USSR team that started the Euro 1988 final defeat by the Dutch were from Ukraine.

Key player:

Andriy Yarmolenko
Andriy Yarmolenko is Ukraine's main goal threat with 22 goals from 55 appearances. Despite playing on the right the 26-year-old often pushes on as an auxiliary target man

Premier League players: None

Who's the boss? Mykhaylo Fomenko took over in 2012 and saw Ukraine narrowly miss out on qualification for the World Cup, losing a play-off 3-2 on aggregate to France.


Euro 2016 prospects: Robert Lewandowski's firepower makes them a dangerous side, while almost as important is Sevilla's defensive midfielder Grzegorz Krychowiak, who was named in La Liga's team of the year last season.

Robert Lewandowski
Robert Lewandowski made his Poland debut in 2008

There are capable performers elsewhere in the side, but Poland lack tournament nous, exiting at the group stage in their four major tournament appearances this century.

How they qualified: They beat the Republic of Ireland 2-1 to secure second spot in Group D. They were top scorers in qualification with 33 goals, with the highlight a stunning 2-0 win against world champions Germany in 2014.

Euro pedigree: This is only the second time they have qualified. They failed to win a game in 2008 or as co-hosts in 2012.

Key player: Bayern Munich's Lewandowski, 27, is arguably the world's best number nine right now - scoring 30 goals in his first 28 games this season for club and country.

His tally of 13 goals in qualifying equalled the European Championship record set by former Northern Ireland player David Healy.

Premier League player: Lukasz Fabianski (Swansea).

Who's the boss? Appointed in October 2013, Adam Nawałka, 58, played for Poland at the 1978 World Cup. He has not managed outside of his homeland.

Northern Ireland

Euro 2016 prospects: Boss Michael O'Neill has targeted a place in the knockout stage in France. Team spirit and dead-ball deliveries will be crucial - they scored nine goals from set-pieces in qualifying, more than any other nation.

How they qualified: Early away wins in Hungary and Greece set the tone and their sole defeat, in Romania, was the only time they conceded more than once in a game.

Euro pedigree: Debutants.

Key player:

Kyle Lafferty
Kyle Lafferty, 28, scored seven times in nine qualifying games but a lack of playing time for Norwich this season is a concern

Premier League players: Chris Brunt, Jonny Evans and Gareth McAuley (all West Brom), Craig Cathcart (Watford), Steven Davis (Southampton), Kyle Lafferty (Norwich), Paddy McNair (Manchester United).

Who's the boss? Michael O'Neill's success has not come overnight - the former Shamrock Rovers boss was appointed in 2011, and won just one of his first 18 games in charge.

Group D


Euro 2016 prospects: Do not be fooled by a dismal World Cup group exit last summer; the majority of the current side were part of Spain's Euro 2012 triumph and the intense competition for places created by emerging talents has helped them regain their edge.

They are no longer as likely to overwhelm the best opposition, as they did when winning three major tournaments in a row - Euro 2008, 2010 World Cup and Euro 2012 - but coach Vicente del Bosque believes his side "is practically the finished article".

How they qualified: Despite a first qualifying defeat for eight years, in Slovakia, they finished top of Group C with nine wins and a national record of eight consecutive clean sheets in competitive games.

Euro pedigree: Spain became the first side to retain the trophy when they outclassed Italy 4-0 in the 2012 final. Having also won in 1964, it was a record-equalling third title.

Key player: David Silva. Spain are far more potent with the 29-year-old Manchester City playmaker in their side. He usually starts on the right of a three-man attack but roams around the pitch to operate in pockets of space and creates openings with his intelligent probing.

David Silva qualifying stats
Eight appearances, three goals, three assists
20 chances created, 458 successful passes

Premier League players: Cesar Azpilicueta, Diego Costa, Cesc Fabregas & Pedro (all Chelsea), Santi Cazorla (Arsenal), David de Gea & Juan Mata (both Manchester United), David Silva (Manchester City).

Who's the boss? Vicente del Bosque, 64, marked a national record 100th match in charge of Spain in June 2015 and he has hinted at staying on beyond Euro 2016.

He took charge after Euro 2008 and has built on that success with further titles at the 2010 World Cup and Euro 2012.

Czech Republic

Euro 2016 prospects: Not much will be anticipated of a largely domestic-based squad with no standout stars, but the Czechs performed above expectation in qualifying. They play a patient, attractive style.

How they qualified: They began the campaign with a stoppage-time victory against the Dutch and, despite a mid-campaign wobble, they eventually finished top of Group A.

Czech Republic

Euro pedigree: They have now qualified for the finals six times in a row since the 1993 break-up of Czechoslovakia, who won the tournament in 1976.

The Czechs were runners-up in 1996, semi-finalists in 2004 and quarter-finalists in 2012.

Key player: Petr Cech. The team's captain is set to play at his fourth European Championship, when he will be 34.

Premier League players: Petr Cech and Tomas Rosicky (both Arsenal).

Who's the boss? Pavel Vrba, 52, has been named Czech Coach of the Year for five seasons running.

Prior to his 2013 appointment, he led modest provincial club Viktoria Plzen to the first four major trophies in their history.


Euro 2016 prospects: Few people gave Turkey hope after a disastrous start to qualifying, but they conceded just three times in their last seven matches and beat the Dutch 3-0 and Czechs 2-0. Their Fifa world ranking of 21 is their highest since 2009.

How they qualified: One point from three Group A games was their worst start to a qualifying campaign since preliminaries for Italia '90, but a late winner against Iceland in their final qualifier saw them through as the third-placed team with the best record.

Euro pedigree: This is their fourth appearance. They reached the semi-finals in 2008.

Key player: Technically gifted midfielder Arda Turan, 28, now at Barcelona, was central to Atletico Madrid's La Liga triumph in 2014 and is of equal importance to his national side.

He is barred from kicking a ball for his new club until January 2016 because of a transfer embargo.

Premier League players: None.

Who's the boss? Fatih Terim - 'The Emperor' - started his third spell in charge in 2013. In his first (1993-96) they qualified for their first European Championship. In his second (2005-2009) they reached the semi-finals of Euro 2008.


Euro 2016 prospects: Dangerous dark horses with formidable technical ability. A midfield axis of Ivan Rakitic and Luka Modric is the envy of coaches the world over, while Mario Mandzukic has been one of Europe's most prolific strikers over the last few years.

How they qualified: A turbulent campaign saw them docked a point and forced to play two qualifiers behind closed doors, while coach Niko Kovac was sacked with two games left. But they ended as Group H runners-up, leapfrogging Norway in the final round of fixtures.

Euro pedigree: This is their fourth successive appearance in the finals, and their fifth in total. They reached the quarter-finals on debut in 1996 and again in 2008.

Key player: Midfielder Rakitic has been tasked with filling Xavi's boots at Barcelona.external-link He won the treble in his first season and scored the opener in the 2015 Champions League final.

Premier League players: Andrej Kramaric (Leicester City), Dejan Lovren (Liverpool).

Who's the boss? Ante Cacic took over for the final two qualifiers. He had previously managed Dinamo Zagreb, Lokomotiva Zagreb and Slovenian side Maribor.

Group E


Euro 2016 prospects: Ranked by Fifa as the best country in the world, Belgium will arrive in neighbouring France with pressure to justify that tag.

They have reached one tournament in 13 years and were underwhelming at last year's World Cup, going out in the quarter-finals 1-0 to Argentina.

They arguably need to be less dependent on the individual talents of Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne, their top scorers in qualifying, and for their other household names to come to the fore.

Kevin De Bruyne
Kevin De Bruyne made his Belgium debut in 2010

How they qualified: Group B winners ahead of Wales. Belgium won only three of their opening six qualifying matches but finished with four straight victories.

Euro pedigree: Belgium are in the finals for the first time since 2002 when, as co-hosts, they exited at the group stage. They were runners-up in 1980 and third in 1972.

Key player: Move over Hazard. De Bruyne, 24, was Belgium's talisman in the qualifying campaign.

He played in all 10 games, was joint top scorer with five goals, supplied three assists and had more goal attempts than any team-mate.

Premier League players: Toby Alderweireld, Nacer Chadli & Jan Vertonghen (all Tottenham), Thibaut Courtois & Eden Hazard (both Chelsea), Kevin De Bruyne & Vincent Kompany (both Manchester City), Marouane Fellaini (Manchester United), Romelu Lukaku (Everton), Christian Benteke, Simon Mignolet & Divock Origi (all Liverpool).

Who's the boss? Marc Wilmots, 46, will celebrate four years in charge next June. He went to four World Cups as a player with Belgium and, as coach, took them to the quarter-finals of the 2014 World Cup.


Euro 2016 prospects: They are a work in progress under Antonio Conte, who has experimented with both 3-5-2 and 4-4-2 formations. Reaching the last four would be a success.

How they qualified: They finished unbeaten, four points clear at the top of Group H despite two draws against Croatia. Five of their seven victories were by a single-goal margin, including two uninspiring 1-0 wins against Malta.

Euro pedigree: Winners on home soil in 1968 and finalists in 2000 and 2012. They have only failed to advance from the group stage twice (in 1996 and 2004).

Key player:

Graziano Pelle
Drafted in to speed up the Azzurri's laboured build-up play, Graziano Pelle, 30, enables Italy to play penetrative, high-tempo football

Premier League players: Matteo Darmian (Manchester United), Graziano Pelle (Southampton).

Who's the boss? Antonio Conte, 46, turned Juventus into Serie A's dominant force, winning three consecutive league titles, so was the obvious replacement for Cesare Prandelli after Italy failed to get out of their group at the 2014 World Cup. It's unclear if he'll stay on beyond Euro 2016.external-link

Republic of Ireland

Euro 2016 prospects: Impressive displays against Germany and Bosnia-Herzegovina show they have an effective game-plan against technically superior opposition, meaning they will have realistic hopes of reaching the knockout stage of the European Championship for the first time.

Republic of Ireland forward Jonathan Walters
Jon Walters scored five times in qualifying

How they qualified: They were slow starters but claimed four points against Germany (including a 1-0 win in Dublin) to pip Scotland to third in Group D.

They then deservedly overcame Bosnia-Herzegovina in a play-off. Defensive solidity was the key - they conceded eight goals in 12 games.

Euro pedigree: They failed to advance from their group in both previous campaigns (1988 and 2012), losing all three Euro 2012 games.

Key player: Jon Walters, 32, "epitomises" Ireland's spirit, says Martin O'Neill. The Stoke City striker was his country's outstanding performer in qualifying, and netted both goals in the decisive win against Bosnia.

With Robbie Keane no longer a likely starter, Walters is Ireland's biggest goal threat, even when played wide.

Premier League players: Harry Arter (Bournemouth), Robbie Brady and Wes Hoolahan (Norwich), Ciaran Clark (Aston Villa), Rob Elliot (Newcastle), Seamus Coleman, Darron Gibson, Aiden McGeady and James McCarthy (all Everton), Shane Long (Southampton), John O'Shea (Sunderland), Darren Randolph (West Ham), Jon Walters and Marc Wilson (both Stoke).

Who's the boss? Martin O'Neill has dovetailed effectively with assistant Roy Keane, gradually reviving Irish fortunes after things turned sour in Giovanni Trapattoni's final two years.


Euro 2016 prospects: Few teams will go into the Euros as reliant on one player as Sweden are. Zlatan Ibrahimovic, "the only world-class player we have" according to coach Erik Hamren, is captain, talisman and national icon.

They have an experienced squad, but one that lacks a bit of spark. As a Danish tabloid cattily put it, Ibrahimovic aside, Sweden's team is "about as interesting as an early morning trip to Ikea".

How they qualified: Pipped by Russia to the second qualifying spot in Group G, they met neighbours Denmark in the play-offs and won 4-3 on aggregate thanks to Ibrahimovic's brilliance.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic uncorked
"I'm like the wine - the older I get, the better I get"

Euro pedigree: This is their fifth successive appearance at a Euros, and sixth in total. Their best performance came on debut in 1992, when they made the semi-finals as hosts.

Key player: No surprise here, it's Ibrahimovic. Eleven goals in qualifying, including three in the play-offs, increased the 34-year-old's legend.

He is out of contract with French side Paris St. Germain at the end of the season.

Premier League players: Sebastian Larsson (Sunderland), Jonas Olsson (West Brom), Martin Olsson (Norwich), Ola Toivonen (Sunderland).

Who's the boss? Erik Hamren has been Sweden boss full-time since 2010. The 58-year-old had previously built up an impressive coaching CV across Scandinavia.

Crucially, he has a good relationship with Ibrahimovic and said after Sweden's play-off win: "Even if he is not part of my family, I love him."

Group F


Euro 2016 prospects: The weakest side in pot one but still likely quarter-finalists. After a poor 2014 World Cup, results have improved under their new manager, although performances have not been easy on the eye.

Portugal's under-21 side oozes talent but next summer will come too soon for most of them.

Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo, 30, is a three-time world player of the year

How they qualified: Topped Group I despite scoring just 11 goals. Defeat by Albania in their opener cost Paulo Bento his job as manager but under Fernando Santos they won their seven other games, all by single-goal margins.

Euro pedigree: They have reached at least the quarter-finals in the last five tournaments. Beaten finalists on home soil in 2004, they were semi-finalists in 2000 and 2012.

Key player: Cristiano Ronaldo, who else? The three-time world player of the year scored five goals in six qualifying appearances, but he has not been at his brilliant best for Real Madrid this season.

Premier League players: Eder (Swansea), Jose Fonte and Cedric Soares (both Southampton).

Who's the boss? After ending his playing career at the age of 21, Fernando Santos worked as an electrician before taking up coaching. Now 61, he has won his first seven competitive games in charge of Portugal - the first manager to do so.

He overachieved by taking Greece to the knockout stage at Euro 2012 and the 2014 World Cup.


Euro 2016 prospects: Despite a population of roughly 330,000 (comparable to Coventry) and only 21,508 registered players, Iceland's chances should not be dismissed.

Investment in better facilities has produced a generation of "indoor kids" - many of the current squad learned the game on 3G pitches inside heated domes.

In 2011 they qualified for the European Under-21 Championship for the first time, and several of those players have stepped up to senior level.

How they qualified: They beat the Netherlands, home and away, and claimed wins against the Czech Republic and Turkey to become the smallest country to qualify for a European Championship.

Euro pedigree: Debutants.

Key player:

Gylfi Sigurdsson
Gylfi Sigurdsson top scored with six goals in qualifying, including all three of the goals they scored in the two wins over the Dutch

Premier League player: Gylfi Sigurdsson (Swansea).

Who's the boss? Swede Lars Lagerback, 67, is joint coach with Heimir Hallgrimsson. Lagerback guided Sweden to five straight major finals between 2000-08.

He will retire after Euro 2016, with 48-year-old Hallgrimsson taking sole charge.


Euro 2016 prospects: Hopes are high after a remarkable qualification campaign which helped Austria climb into the top 10 of the Fifa rankings for the first time.

How they qualified: Austria were unbeaten in Group G, winning nine of their 10 matches to finish eight points clear of Russia.

The boss is impressed
"We have created a sensation in Europe. This team has written history" - Leo Windtner, Austrian FA president

Euro pedigree: This is only their second appearance and the first time they have qualified for the finals. They failed to win a game as co-hosts at Euro 2008.

Key player: A central midfielder for his country, David Alaba's versatility makes him a favourite of Bayern Munich boss Pep Guardiola, who has said: "Alaba is our god - he has played in nearly all 10 positions."

Premier League players: Marko Arnautovic (Stoke City), Christian Fuchs (Leicester), Sebastian Prodl (Watford), Kevin Wimmer (Tottenham).

Who's the boss? Former Switzerland international Marcel Koller. After Austria booked their place in France with victory against Sweden, he turned up to the post-match media conference wearing a beret and eating a baguette.


Euro 2016 prospects: Hungary ended a 30-year championship drought with qualification. Not a single member of their squad plays regularly in any of Europe's top five leagues and they would appear to be among the weakest sides heading to France.

How they qualified: They won just four of their 10 group games and went through three different coaches, but ultimately saw off Norway in the play-offs.

Euro pedigree: They were heavyweights in the competition's early tournaments, finishing third in 1964 and fourth in 1972. They subsequently failed to qualify for 10 successive finals until now.

Key player: Balazs Dzsudzsak. The 28-year-old left winger and captain was crucial to their qualification. He has played regularly in Hungary, the Netherlands and Russia and is currently with Turkish side Bursaspor.

Premier League player: Adam Bogdan (Liverpool).

Who's the boss? German Bernd Storck, 52, took over in July, initially temporarily following Pal Dardai's switch to Hertha Berlin.

The majority of his coaching career has been in Kazakhstan. He played for Borussia Dortmund in the 1980s.

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