Euro 2016 Group B is the one most home nations fans will be interested in, with both England and Wales vying for a place in the Round of 16.
With this in mind, here is our comprehensive guide to Group B fixtures, odds and more:
Teams in Euro 2016 Group B
- England (Ladbrokes odds to win group: evens; to qualify for knockout phase: 1/8)
- Wales (Ladbrokes odds to win group: 9/2; to qualify for knockout phase: 4/6)
- Russia (Ladbrokes odds to win group: 13/5; to qualify for knockout phase: 1/3)
- Slovakia (Ladbrokes odds to win group: 5/1; to qualify for knockout phase: 8/11)
- Wales vs. Slovakia (Saturday, June 11, 5pm)
Venue: Stade de Bordeaux)
Odds: Wales win: 6/4 | Draw: 2/1 | Slovakia: 19/10
- England vs. Russia (Saturday, June 11, 8pm)
Venue: Stade Velodrome, Marseille
Odds: England win: 6/5 | Draw: 2/1 | Russia win: 5/2
- Russia vs. Slovakia (Wednesday, June 15, 2pm)
Venue: Stade Pierre Mauroy, Lille
- England vs. Wales (Thursday, June 16, 2pm
Venue: Stade Bollaert-Delelis, Lens
- Russia vs. Wales (Monday, June 20, 8pm)
Venue: Stadium de Toulouse
- Slovakia vs. England (Monday, June 20, 8pm)
Venue: Stade Geoffroy Guichard, St Etienne
England won all of their qualifying matches, yet English football fans remain unconvinced by the team, especially after the disaster of the 2014 World Cup.
Manager Roy Hodgson has a young squad – almost unrecognisable from two years ago – to call upon. Wayne Rooney is the last man standing of a former ‘Golden Generation’, in which he was considered the jewel in the crown.
Yet just a few months ago, Rooney’s bad form was raising the ire of fans, since he is playing much better at club level.
As such, FA chairman Greg Dyke’s prediction that England will win the tournament was met with the loud scoffs of fans. The best we can do at Ladbrokes is to give odds of 11/1 and put England at fifth-favourites to win the tournament.
Rooney is facing odds of 28/1 to be the tournament’s top scorer, while we offer 33/1 on Daniel Sturridge claiming the Golden Boot.
Euro 2016 is Wales’ first international tournament since the 1958 World Cup. The team is built around Real Madrid’s Gareth Bale, who many see as single-handedly responsible for their qualification.
The stats don’t lie – without Bale’s many goals and assists, it is unlikely that Wales would be where they are.
Making the Round of 16 would also be a first in 58 years, but we reckon this is wholly possible. In fact, we have Wales as second favourites in the group.
Russia were heading for disaster under former England coach, Fabio Capello, until the Italian was sacked in June 2015. CSKA Moscow coach Leonid Slutsky came in to rescue the campaign, while also continuing to manage his club.
Bringing in Slutsky proved to be the right move, with Russia winning the rest of their qualifying matches.
Yet the Russian coach faces the same issues that Capello complained openly about: too many foreign players in the Russian league and not enough home-grown talent.
As a result, Russia have a less-than-perfect squad, and face odds of 40/1 to win the tournament.
Slovakia are not expected to make many waves in what is only their second international tournament.
Having said that, very little was expected of them in the 2010 World Cup (their first tournament) and they ended up beating Italy and making their way into to the Round of 16.
Jan Kozak’s team beat reigning champions Spain in one of their Euro 2016 qualifiers in 2014. More recently, Slovakia almost threw away their great start by not scoring in three games and only just squeezing a win over Luxembourg to qualify.
We’re offering odds of a 100/1 for Slovakia to win Euro 2016, yet that win over Spain means you certainly shouldn’t write them off – worth a punt?
England will be more confident in this group than they were in the 2014 World Cup when they faced Italy and Uruguay.
Despite this, each opponent presents a challenge, especially the fourth Group B match against Wales, making it one of the most eagerly anticipated fixtures of this group.
A defeat against Wales, Slovakia, or Russia, could make life hard for Roy Hodgson, whose ability to adapt his tactics on a game to game basis proved somewhat lacking at the World Cup.
Having said that, England won every one of their qualifying matches and the squad is full of great players. The Three Lions therefore deserve their place as fifth-favourites in the tournament and outright favourites to win the group.