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UEFA Euro 2020: a weekend of football extravaganza

The group stages continue with key fixtures in store in groups D and F as England face Scotland and Germany take on Portugal

Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice against Hungary on 15 June. (MINT_PRINT/Reuters)

The group stages of the UEFA Euro 2020 continue with some big fixtures in store in groups D and F over the weekend. England could make it to the round of 16 with a match to spare if they beat Scotland, who need a result after their defeat to the Czech Republic in their first match. One goal was enough for Gareth Southgate’s England to beat Croatia in their opening match, but they will have to be at their best against the Scots on Saturday.

In Budapest, Hungary will take on world champions France, who look like the team to beat so far. Hungary can take plenty of encouragement from their performance against Portugal and will once again have a capacity crowd at the Puskas Arena behind them.

Also read: Seven great footballers to watch out for in Euro 2020

Marco Rossi's men put in an impressive shift against Portugal, but imploded towards the end, conceding three late goals. France will go through to the last 16 if they win this one. If Hungary lose, it's virtually the end of the road for them in the competition. Given the wealth of attacking talent and creativity in this French squad, it will be an uphill task for the hosts in Budapest. Anything apart from a dominant victory for France could turn out to be the tournament's standout result so far.

France's forward Kylian Mbappe runs with the ball during the UEFA EURO 2020 Group F football match between France and Germany at the Allianz Arena in Munich on June 15, 2021.
France's forward Kylian Mbappe runs with the ball during the UEFA EURO 2020 Group F football match between France and Germany at the Allianz Arena in Munich on June 15, 2021. (AFP)

The match of the day, however, comes from Munich where Germany will be looking to avoid a second defeat in the tournament. They lost to France on 16 June and have it all to do against Portugal, the defending European champions. Cristiano Ronaldo’s team left it late against Hungary in their opening match. But the three-nil victory showed their strong mentality. The equation is simple: Portugal will be through to the next round if they defeat Germany, who will be unable to finish in their group F’s top two if they lose to Portugal and Hungary do not beat France. The other match on Sunday sees Spain take on Poland in Seville.

Timings (IST): Saturday’s fixtures: England vs Scotland 00:30; Hungary vs France 18:30; and Germany vs Portugal 21:30. Sunday’s fixture: Spain vs Poland 00:30. Live on the Sony Six channel and SonyLIV

Also read: Euro 2020: A unique experiment in pandemic football

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