Following the postponement of Euro 2020, international football returns with this seasons UEFA Nations League getting underway at the weekend. Portugal were the inaugural winners of the competition in 2019, beating the Netherlands in the final. The tournament and format proved very popular, so fans across Europe will be hoping this terms competition will be equally exciting.
World Champions, France, are the favourites to win the 2021 Nations League title, with Belgium and England joint second favourites. The opening two games of League A take place between the 3-8 September.
The Dutch are favourites to progress from Group 1
The Netherlands, who made it all the way to the final of the 2019 tournament, get their competition underway with a game against Poland at the Johan Cruyff Arena in Amsterdam. They will want to get off to an all-important winning start, as Italy visit them just three days later.
The Italians face Bosnia & Herzegovina in Florence in their opening game and will also want to make the perfect start with their trip to Amsterdam following soon after. Poland visit Bosnia on the same night and the result in that game could give us an idea of who is likely to be relegated from Group 1.
Favourites avoid each other in Group 2 opening games
Belgium and England are joint second favourites to win the UEFA Nations League title and joint favourites to progress to the finals from Group 2. However, both sides avoid each other on the opening weekend of games.
England, who finished fourth at the 2018 World Cup, before finishing third in the 2019 Nations League, have trips to Iceland and Denmark to get their competition underway, whilst Belgium, who beat England to finish third at the 2018 World Cup, will travel to Denmark first before welcoming Iceland to the King Baudouin Stadium in Brussels.
World Champions strong favourites to top Group 3
Current World Champions, France, are odds on favourites to win Group 3 ahead of previous Nations League winners, Portugal.
The French start their campaign with a trip to Stockholm to face Sweden, before returning to Paris to host Croatia. The Portuguese will begin the defence of their title with a home game in Porto against the Croatians, ahead of their own trip to Sweden.
Germany meet Spain in Group 4 on opening weekend
The big game on the opening weekend of this seasons UEFA Nations League will see Germany welcome Spain to Stuttgart. The Germans are slight favourites to win Group 4, but a lot more will be known about who might progress to the finals following this game.
After the meeting of the two group favourites, Spain welcome the Ukraine to the Alfredo di Stéfano Stadium in Madrid, whilst Germany travel to Basel to face Switzerland. Yet, whilst all the attention will be on Germany or Spain winning the group, the Swiss made it to the finals in 2019, eventually finishing fourth after defeats against Portugal and England, and could prove a danger once again.
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