Euro 2016: An alternative look – Group A
France: The French are somehow favourites for the tournament which seems entirely based on home advantage. They have some good players but whether they will be able to overcome their tendency to go on strike and mutiny against the manager when he drops a big player for the first game is debatable. The squad’s character is summed up well by Benzema’s omission from the squad for blackmailing a teammate over a sex tape. They are also mediocre at centre half thanks to Varane’s injury. Prediction: Semi-finals
Romania: If you believe Nigel Farage, this bunch of ex-communist organised criminals should not even be allowed to enter the tournament. Obviously, to everyone else they’re a team of incredibly un-threatening, middling European footballers who couldn’t even finish above the League One-quality squad of Northern Ireland. Apparently solid at the back but don’t expect to be on the edge of your seat. Prediction: Might scrape through the group in 3rd
Albania: Does anyone really care? Nope me neither. The first beneficiary of UEFA’s bizarre decision to ruin a usually good quality and exciting tournament by adding 8 poor teams to the finals. Their match against Romania has the potential to be the dullest game of the competition and that’s saying something. Prediction: No points and probably no goals either
Switzerland: Its difficult to know what to think about the Swiss, with their traditional neutrality resulting in sheer apathy when it comes to them. I’m erring on the side of dislike though due to their appalling yodelling and position as an unapologetic tax haven. Should comfortably get out of the group but will lose to the first decent side they face in the knockouts. Prediction: Last 16
Should be a fairly straightforward group for the French, especially if they start well. The danger is of course that they beat themselves. The Swiss should finish second with Romania third. Albania are the archetypal also-rans. Lets hope the French implode to enliven things a bit.