UEFA U21 Euro 2007 - Tournament Starts June 10
The UEFA under 21 Championships kicks off in Holland on Saturday.
This competition has proved a fertile spawning ground for future super-stars, while some of faces on show will already be familiar to bettors.
The future soccer talent of Europe will be show in Holland for the next two weeks as the continent’s eight best under-21 national teams clash. The tournament has existed since 1978 but has undergone regular modification.
For 2007 the competition has been moved to odd years so as not to clash with the major international senior competitions, while for the first time the hosts – Holland – were chosen before qualification began, thereby sidestepping that process.
The Dutch are coincidentally the holders of the trophy, which they lifted in Portugal last year, after beating the Ukraine 3-0 in the final. That was the first time the Jong Oranje had claimed the title, but they have another great chance as hosts.
Holland kick-off two weeks of action against Israel, with PinnacleSports promising to offer top asian handicap odds on every UEFA U21 Euro 2007 game throughout the tournament.
The key issue to keep in mind is that there is little continuity from one competition to the next as players must be under the age of 21 when the qualification process begins. Given that stipulation, few of the winning Dutch side in 2006 will remain, but success in the event is a reflection of the effectiveness of international you acadamies.
Italy have enjoyed the most success in this competition, lifting the trophy on five occasions since their first success in 1992. On that evidence alone the nation that produced the current World Champions will be popular with bettors.
England fielding several high-profile players, warmed up for their opening against the Czech Republic by thrashing Slovakia 5-0, after which coach, Stuart Pearce staged a mock penalty shoot-out. Pearce has first-hand experience of the pain of losing on spot-kicks going back to Italia 90, so hopes the rehearsal will pay dividends. The Czechs were rocked by the withdrawal of their captain, Martin Latka, four days before the off.
Israel take a football team to an major international event for the first time since the 1976 Olympic Games, with several of the squad, including Chelsea's Ben Sahar having already made their debuts in the full senior side. They have a tough Group A opening game against the hosts and holders, while the sections other two sides, Portugal and Belgium, play later in the evening.
The final side making up the eight team event are Serbia, who lifted the event in 1978 when it first appeared in this format. Coach Miroslav Djukic can call on four senior international players who should add invaluable experience.
Check out the UEFA U21 odds at PinnacleSports now