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UEFA Euro 2024 Team Previews: Turkey

Turkey Euro 2024 Preview
(Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports)

UEFA Euro 2024 Team Previews: Turkey

UEFA Euro 2024 is just weeks away from kicking off in Germany. Over the next 17 days, we will be previewing each team that will be taking part in Europe’s biggest football tournament. Check out all of the team previews that have been done so far. Up next is Turkey.

Turkey was looked at as a dark horse team heading into Euro 2020. They were in red-hot form heading into the tournament, and everyone, including myself, expected a lot from the Crescent-Stars. Then, the tournament started, and Turkey lost all three games and scored only one goal. Four years later, Turkey will look to avenge the disappointment that was Euro 2020, and in a group with Portugal, the Czech Republic and Georgia, Turkey will like their odds.

Euro Appearances

This will be Turkey’s sixth European Championship appearance. The first came in 1996 and the Turks have now qualified for the last three Euros.

Best Finish at the Euros

Turkey’s best Euro showing was at Euro 2008 when they reached the semifinals. Apart from this magical run, the Crescent-Stars have only reached the knockout stage one other time.

Key players

Turkey’s strength comes in the midfield. Hakan Çalhanoğlu (Inter Milan) will provide Turkey with a creative attacking option, and if there is a freekick within shooting distance, do not be surprised if he finds the back of the net. Salih Özcan (Borussia Dortmund) and Orkun Kökçü (Benfica) are also valuable components of the Turkish midfield.

Up top, Cenk Tosun (Besiktas) will spearhead the attack, while Arda Güler (Real Madrid) is an exciting young player to keep an eye on. Defense is the biggest concern, and if the Crescent-Stars want to make a run in this tournament, they will need players like Merih Demiral (Al-Ahli) and Zeki Çelik (Roma) will need to play well.

Manager

Vincenzo Montella will lead Turkey from the touchline during Euro 2024. The man who was capped 20 times by Italy was named Turkey’s new head coach in 2023. Prior to that, he managed clubs such as AC Milan and Fiorentina in Italy, Sevilla in Spain and Adana Demirspor in Turkey.

Biggest Group Game – vs Czech Republic on June 26

Portugal is expected to win the group. Obviously, anything can happen, but it would be shocking to see any other scenario. As such, Turkey is going to need a good result against the Czech Republic. With a game against Georgia that Turkey should get three points in, another win against the Czechs would leave the Crescent-Stars in a very good place in Group F.

Prediction

I think Turkey will get out of the group. It could be in second or as a third-place team, but with a very winnable game against Georgia, I see the Crescent-Stars getting out of the group stage and being bounced during the Round of 16.


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