Who will progress from Euro 2024's Group E?
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Who will progress from Euro 2024's Group E?

25/06/24 13:28

Euro 2024 Group E Final Predictions

Going into the tournament, Group E looked sure to be a walk in the park for Belgium. They were far and away the best side on paper and the obvious favourites to win the group and they still might. However after the first two matchdays, the group’s current standings are perhaps the biggest surprise of the tournament so far. Ahead of the third and final matchday, let’s take a look at where things stand and what each team needs to make it to the knockout stages.

Group E as of now

All four teams are currently on three points with just goal difference (GD) separating the nations. Romania sit in the top spot with a +1 GD, ahead of Belgium who have the same GD but are behind due to scoring two goals compared to the leader’s three. Slovakia sit third with a GD of 0 leaving Ukraine in fourth with a -2 GD.

If the groups ended today all three of Romania, Belgium and Slovakia would progress with Slovakia being one of the four best third place teams in the groups.

Of course we have one more set of matches to play and this is where things can shake up easily.

Who is playing who on the final Group E matchday?

Group E concludes on Wednesday 26th of June with Slovakia vs Romania and Ukraine vs Belgium. The former will be shown on BBC Two and the latter on BBC One, both games will kick off at 17:00pm BST.

A win for all four teams would mean a place in the knockout stages but top spot cannot be guaranteed for any side with the only deciding factor on this being goal difference.

A point would be enough for Romania, Belgium and Slovakia to move on. Due to their negative goal difference, Ukraine have to win to remain in the tournament.

Final Group E predictions

Truthfully it is hard to predict this group. If you read my pre-tournament predictions then you will know I could not have been more wrong about how the first few matches would play out. Nevertheless I’ll attempt to predict the final matchday anyway.

Slovakia 2 - 1 Romania

Slovakia have shown promise in their first two games, earning a memorable 1-0 win over Belgium to open the group and getting on the scoresheet despite losing to Ukraine in matchday two. After a 3-0 win over Ukraine, Romania looked worse against Belgium and fell to a 2-0 loss.

Slovakia have shown just that little bit more that gives me the confidence they will pull of a victory.

Belgium 3 - 0 Ukraine

There is a case to be made that Belgium are unfortunate not to already have a place in the knockout stages sealed. Romelu Lukaku has had a total of four goals ruled out by VAR across the first two matches, two of which would have given his side at the very least a draw against Slovakia and have them in the round-of-16 already.

Unluckily for Lukaku and The Red Devils, they still need a result from this game and I do think we will finally see Lukaku bag the goals that have alluded him so far. Ukraine did well to bounce back from their 3-0 opening loss but I do not think they will be able to withstand Belgium’s attack and will ultimately bow out of the group stages.

So how does Group E end?

Given the results above, this would have Belgium coming out on top with a +4 GD, Slovakia coming in second on goal difference and Romania, despite the loss, finishing third again on goal difference. All of the top three would then progress to the knockout stages and Ukraine’s Euro 2024 journey would come to an end thanks to goal difference and a fourth place finish.

Tune in tomorrow on BBC One/BBC Two to see how things shake up and if I finally get a prediction correct.

Benji Kosartiyer
Journalist
Cameron Beards

Football Writer

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