The Round of 16 fixtures at Euro 2020 have just concluded and here is a quick look at the results from a kits point of view. Interestingly, both the defending champions and the reigning world champions were eliminated from the tournament at this stage.
Wales (Adidas) 0-4 Denmark (Hummel)
Italy (Puma) 2-1 Austria (Puma)
Netherlands (Nike) 0-2 Czech Republic (Puma)
Belgium (Adidas) 1-0 Portugal (Nike)
Croatia (Nike) 3-5 Spain (Adidas)
France (Nike) 3-3 Switzerland (Puma) [SUI win 5-4 on penalties]
England (Nike) 2-0 Germany (Adidas)
Sweden (Adidas) 1-2 Ukraine (Joma)
The last eight is now a pretty good mix of manufacturers- 2 from Adidas (Spain/Belgium), 3 from Puma (Italy/Czech Republic/Switzerland) and one each from Nike (England), Hummel (Denmark) and Joma (Ukraine)
The Round of 16 was a pretty bad one for Nike teams in particular- the Netherlands and France were both expected to comfortably progress to the last eight, but were eliminated in spectacular fashion by two Puma teams in form of the Czech Republic and Switzerland respectively. The red card to Matthijs de Ligt was a big turning point in the Dutch game while France blew a 3-1 lead and went down on penalties to Switzerland, with Kylian Mbappe fluffing his lines from the spot in the shootout.
Group F, dubbed the Group of Death before the tournament started, literally became one during the Round of 16. All three teams from it that qualified for the knockout stages- France, Germany and Portugal were shown the door.
With the exits of both defending champions Portugal and world champions France from the competition, Belgium are now favourites to win Euro 2020 as per the odds at the time of writing. Roberto Martinez’s side first have a quarterfinal to negotiate in the last eight in the form of Italy. They will be sweating on the fitness of both Kevin de Bruyne and Eden Hazard, but the defensive solidarity shown by the Red Devils against Portugal would’ve encouraged Martinez- defence, after all, wins Championships.
The only Nike side to avoid the “curse” were England, who beat Germany 2-0 at Wembley courtesy second half goals from Man City forward Raheem Sterling and Spurs captain Harry Kane. The Germans, playing in their black change strip, had their chances, with Muller and Werner both going close, but unlike the Three Lions, they couldn’t quite make them count.
England’s side of the draw looks a pretty good one too- they will face Ukraine in the last eight and should they see off Andriy Shevchenko’s men, the winner of the Czech Republic/Denmark clash will await them in the semis. In other words, one of Nike/Joma/Puma/Hummel will definitely be in the final clash at Wembley!
The other side of the draw is more Adidas dominated, and you’d normally back one of them (Belgium/Spain) or Italy in Puma to emerge winners. Switzerland (also in Puma) are possibly the dark horses and are one of three third placed teams (the Czechs and Ukraine being the others) still left in the competition.