Germany’s under-19’s got off to an excellent start in their opening European Championship match by going a goal ahead versus the Netherlands immediately after the start of the second half. That was as good as it got though, because the Dutch youngsters came storming back to claim a 4-1 victory with PSV’s Piroe bagging himself a hat-trick.
That was the two sides opening game in group B at the tournament in Georgia, and each side in the competition has now fulfilled one fixture so far. The tournament is split into two groups of four, with the top two in each section progressing to the semi finals. It’s been a long drawn out process for the eight teams in contention, which began with a qualifying round of 13 groups of four. Those that progressed from the first group stage went on to an Elite round which consisted of a further 7 groups of four – the winner of each section qualifying for the finals along with host Georgia.
It’s been an arduous task then for the young players to reach this competition, and another group of four beckons for those hoping to reach the latter stages. The German youth players will be hoping to emulate their compatriots who have already taken two international trophies this summer. The under-21 side were successful in their European Championship, beating Spain 1-0 in the final, while an inexperienced senior squad took the Confederations Cup in Russia, beating Chile by the same scoreline. That particular result was all the more impressive as several of Germany’s key players were given the summer off to prepare for next year’s World Cup. Can the under-19’s recover from that early set back and take out yet another title for Germany? They are available at +500 with Betway to do so, and it could be a perfect time to back them.
Group A consists of Czech Republic, Sweden, Portugal and hosts Georgia. These four teams opened the competition on Sunday 2nd July, with Portugal and Czech republic running out the winners and taking three points. Georgia held their own for much of the game against Portugal but were eventually undone by Rui Pedro’s 66th minute penalty, which was enough to give the Portuguese a slender 1-0 win. Czech Republic’s Daniel Turyna scored twice either side of half time to give his side a comfortable lead, although it was a tight finish after Sweden pulled one back in the 77th minute.
Czech Republic and Portugal lead the group with three points, but they will play each other on Wednesday – a game that could go some way to determining the group winner. It also gives both Georgia and Sweden a chance to make up ground as they face off on the same night.
Group B is arguably a more competitive affair, containing England, Germany, Netherlands and Bulgaria. One might be forgiven for thinking the Bulgarians are the weakest side of the lot, but having eliminated France in the elite round, they are a side which commands respect.
Nonetheless, England secured a 2-0 victory over Bulgaria in their opening game on Monday evening – Mason Mount smashing home in the very first minute to give the Three Lions a dream start, before Ryan Sessegnon added a second early in the second half. Young keeper Aaron Ramsdale made some fine saves in the first half though, so it may not have been all plain sailing had one of those Bulgarian efforts found the back of the net.
As mentioned, the Netherlands youth players came from behind to earn a commendable 4-1 victory over Germany, but it’s very difficult to predict how this group will pan out. Germany’s next tie is against Bulgaria and if they can secure a win there it will put them right back in the mix. More so because England play Netherlands earlier in the evening on Thursday. Much will depend on the result of that game, but if Germany and England go into their final group game against each other with qualification in the balance, it could spell trouble for the Three Lions.
The German youngsters were among the pre-tournament favourites for this competition, and given that poor first result they are now available at a much bigger price. We’re taking the odds on offer on the basis that we expect them to bounce back from that reverse and still make their way through to the semi finals.
Germany to win the U19 European Championship
2nd – 15th July
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