Those playing the official Euro 2020 fantasy football game appear to be split between two camps ahead of the quarter-final: those who have the wildcard chip to hand and those who don’t.
Managers still in possession of their wildcard are likely to be feeling pretty smug with themselves given Portugal, Germany, the Netherlands and most shockingly of all, France, have been dumped out of the competition. There will be plenty of hits taken this week…
Just as in Fantasy Premier League, the chip enables managers to make unlimited changes to their 15-man squad without incurring any transfer penalties along the way.
It means that those still in possession of it can bid au revoir to Kylian Mbappe, adeus to Cristiano Ronaldo and tot ziens to Denzel Dumfries.
In this tips article, we have selected a whole new 15-man squad for the quarter-final and beyond which should (hopefully) benefit managers with and without a wildcard.
Gianluigi Donnarumma (Italy)
Finally, after 383 minutes of action at Euro 2020, Gianluigi Donnarumma was beaten by Sasa Kaladjdzic’s opportunistic, downwards header in the last 16. Nevertheless, Italy’s No 1 has been one of the standout shot-stoppers at Euro 2020 and his chances of keeping a clean sheet against Belgium have increased with both Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne ruled out.
Price: €5.7m Points: 20
Jordan Pickford (England)
If Donnarumma concedes against Belgium – a reasonable prospect given Belgium’s firepower – replace him with another goalkeeper playing on Saturday. England’s Jordan Pickford is the pick of those having kept four consecutive clean sheets at the tournament. Spending over 10 per cent of your budget on goalkeepers is more palatable given there are far fewer premium options in attack now.
Price: €5.7m Points: 25
Luke Shaw (England)
After sitting out England’s opener against Croatia, Luke Shaw has started in each of England’s last three matches, returning fantasy football points in all of them. Shaw has averaged seven points per game, combining an assist for Raheem Sterling against Germany with three shut-outs at the back.
Price: €6.1m Points: 21
Leonardo Spinazzola (Italy)
Arguably the standout defender of the tournament, particularly given the aforementioned Denzel Dumfries has been eliminated. The right-footed left back has created five chances and had six attempts on goal in his three appearances.
Price: €5.6m Points: 20
Vladimir Coufal (Czech Republic)
One of the bargains of the season on Fantasy Premier League, Vladimir Coufal has provided excellent value for money in the Euro 2020 edition of the game too. The Czechs have only conceded twice in four matches, keeping out a highly-fancied Dutch attack last time out and Coufal has created four chances, in total.
Price: €5.3m Points: 18
Cesar Azpilicueta (Spain)
Chelsea’s long-serving captain isn’t exactly renowned for his attacking capabilities but he scored a superb headed goal against Croatia and spent a large chunk of the game in the final third. Although Spain let in three goals in that game, they have generally looked a solid outfit and are favourites against the Swiss.
Price: €5.1m Points: 13
Joakim Maehle (Denmark)
Atalanta’s scouting department is admired across Europe and they deserve another pat on the back for unearthing Denmark’s adventurous wing-back Joakim Maehle. The 24-year-old’s nine efforts on goal ranks second in the Danish squad and top among all defenders in the competition.
Price: €4.7m Points: 23
Raheem Sterling (England)
England’s MVP. Raheem Sterling scored winning goals against Croatia and the Czech Republic in the group stage, as well as the match-turning one in the historic victory over Germany. Sterling has been clinical so far, converting 42 per cent of his efforts on goal in the competition and is proving to be worth his premium price.
Price: €9.7m Points: 27
Ferran Torres (Spain)
Ferran Torres is growing into the tournament after scoring a couple of supremely well-taken goals against Slovakia and Croatia in his last two matches. The Manchester City winger also supplied a superb cross for Azpilicueta to score last time out and will feel he can trouble Switzerland’s attack-minded left back Ricardo Rodriguez.
Price: €8.1m Points: 20
Thorgan Hazard (Belgium)
Belgium’s difference-maker against Portugal, Thorgan Hazard scored a superb goal from the edge of the box to send his side into the last eight. Hazard Jr lined up in a left wing-back role in that game but may be shuffled into a more advanced position for the Italy match due to injuries to Belgium’s established attackers.
Price: €8.1m Points: 18
Pablo Sarabia (Spain)
Benefited from underwhelming performances from his midfield colleagues in Spain’s opening two games against Sweden and Poland to earn a start against Slovakia and hasn’t looked back since. Pablo Sarabia has contributed two goals and two assists in his last two matches, amassing 21 points in total.
Price: €6.7m Points: 23
Mikkel Damsgaard (Denmark)
Denmark’s 20-year-old winger Mikkel Damsgaard has chucked his hat into the ring for Uefa’s Best Young Player of the Tournament award following a string of exciting performances. The Sampdoria star scored a screamer in Denmark’s 4-1 win over Russia and followed it up with an assist in the last 16 thrashing of Wales.
Price: €6.1m Points: 15
Romelu Lukaku (Belgium)
With both De Bruyne and Eden Hazard ruled out through injury, Belgium’s reliance on Romelu Lukaku to produce the goods against Italy has increased tenfold. The good news for the Belgians is that there are few strikers in world football as good at creating something for themselves as Lukaku who can single-handedly torment opposition defences.
Price: €11.3m Points: 20
Ciro Immobile (Italy)
More subdued against Austria than he had been in his previous matches but still came inches to scoring a wonder-goal when his effort from range rattled the woodwork. Ciro Immobile will feel as though he should have more than two goals for his efforts, considering he has averaged the highest shots per game rate (4.3) in the competition.
Price: €10.2m Points: 18
Patrick Schick (Czech Republic)
The top-scoring forward still in the competition, Patrik Schick can enhance his golden boot claims with a goal or two against Denmark in what looks to be a coin toss of a game in Baku. Only Cristiano Ronaldo with five goals has outscored Schick (four) at Euro 2020.
Price: €8.6m Points: 27