Euro 2020 will get its final two quarter-finalists as England take on Germany at Wembley before Sweden and Ukraine lock horns in Glasgow. The clash between the two heavyweights, Germany and England, will attract all the eyeballs but Sweden who finished above Spain in the group will be keen to reach the last eight against a Ukraine side who have had an incredible qualifying round where they finished above Portugal.
Here’s a preview of the two ties and everything you need to know about the match-ups:
Match 1: England vs Germany
Old foes England and Germany face off in the last 16 of Euro 2020 on Tuesday with the victors knowing they will then be favourites to go on and reach the final thanks to a kind-looking draw.
Neither side has hit top form during the tournament so far, but England are confident of beating the Germans in the knockout stage of a major tournament for the first time since 1966 in front of 45,000 fans at Wembley.
Joachim Loew’s side head to Wembley looking to extend England’s miserable run of 55 years since they last beat Germany in the knockout stages of a major tournament.
The Germans triumphed over England on penalties in the semi-finals of both the 1990 World Cup and Euro 96, the latter of which was also at Wembley.
It was current England manager Gareth Southgate who missed the crucial spot-kick as the Germans went on to win the Euro 96 title.
Now 25 years later, the Germans are ready for penalties should the scores be level after extra time on Tuesday.
Germany have won their last four knockout matches against England, but so far have struggled for consistency at Euro 2020.
After sweeping aside holders Portugal 4-2 having lost their opening game to world champions France, the Germans were six minutes from elimination before equalising in a 2-2 draw with Hungary.
Antonio Ruediger and Ilkay Gundogan returned for Germany’s final training session on Monday with coach Joachim Loew expected to make changes to his starting line-up.
Chelsea centre-back Ruediger had missed training on Sunday with a cold while Manchester City midfielder Gundogan was sidelined with a head knock.
Both recovered to take part at their Euro 2020 base in Bavaria before the flight to London for Tuesday’s fixture with England at Wembley.
Thomas Mueller is tipped to replace Leroy Sane, having shaken off a knee injury.
His Bayern Munich team-mate Leon Goretzka, who scored the crucial equaliser against Hungary in Germany’s final group-stage match, is expected to take over from Gundogan in midfield.
Left-back Robin Gosens described the 31-year-old Mueller as “worth his weight in gold” and said that “he lifts us up a level”.
Mueller scored twice against England in the Germans’ 4-1 last-16 win at the 2010 World Cup – the last meeting of the countries at a major tournament.
Who’s saying what?
Gareth Southgate, England head coach
“It is a fantastic game to be involved in and a real opportunity for us to progress to a quarter-final. It is a big opponent with excellent pedigree and great experience.
“There is of course great excitement with fans and people tuning in to the game. But we have got to trust in the way we prepare and transfer what we do in training into the game. We have to focus on what we can control.”
Jack Grealish, England midfielder
“I’ve spoken about how big these tournaments are in people’s careers. You think back and look at Gazza at Italia ‘90, where he was well known before but everyone remembers that tournament.
“You look at Wayne Rooney at Euro 2004 when he set his marker to be one of the best in the world. I’ve got a bit to follow in their footsteps but hopefully I can do that if I get more chances in the tournament.”
Joachim Low, Germany head coach
“We know that if we play to our potential” at Wembley” we’ll be strong. But if we don’t implement a few things, we’ll be in trouble.
“The English have to play going forward at home. It will be an open game, more open than against Hungary. We have to correct a few things and be fully on our guard, there will be no quarter given there now. We have to do better, absolutely.”
Thomas Muller, Germany forward
“We won against England in 2010 - that has nothing to do with Tuesday, but it might give some of you a good feeling. We are looking forward to playing a big name in England.”
England vs Germany H2H
Stats and Trivia
• Germany are unbeaten in their last seven games against England at Wembley (W5 D2); they have not lost there since goals from Colin Bell and Malcolm MacDonald gave England a 2-0 win in a March 1975 friendly. Their last competitive defeat at the stadium was the 1966 World Cup final.
• The defeat by Iceland in the last 16 at Euro 2016 is England’s only reverse in 14 EURO finals matches (W7 D6), with the quarter-final eliminations on penalties by Italy (2012) and Portugal (2004) counted as draws. The only knockout fixture they have ever won at a Euro final tournament was on penalties after a 0-0 draw against Spain in the 1996 quarter-final at Wembley.
• Germany have never lost in the round of 16 at a major tournament, that Euro 2016 win against Slovakia adding to eight successive victories at the same stage of the World Cup from 1986 to 2014 (against Morocco, the Netherlands, Belgium, Mexico, Paraguay, Sweden, England and Algeria respectively).
• England have kept clean sheets in their last nine EURO matches at Wembley, qualifiers and final tournament combined. Indeed, the last goal they conceded there in the competition was a Jordan Henderson own goal in a 3-1 win against Slovenia in November 2014, a run of 842 minutes without conceding during which England have scored 29 goals themselves. The last opposition player to score against England at Wembley in a Euro match was Switzerland’s Tranquillo Barnetta, who struck twice in a 2-2 qualifying draw on 4 June 2011.
• Germany’s record against England at Wembley is W6 D2 L4. Their only game against the home team in England that was not played at Wembley was a 3-0 defeat at Tottenham’s White Hart Lane in a 1935 friendly.
Match 2: Sweden vs Ukraine
Sweden may have a golden chance to reach the Euro 2020 quarter-finals on Tuesday as they face Ukraine in Glasgow, but coach Janne Andersson has warned against complacency from his side.
Andersson’s men beat Spain to top spot in Group E with victories over Slovakia and Poland and their reward is a meeting with Andriy Shevchenko’s side, who were the only team to qualify for the last 16 with just three points.
Sweden also reached the last eight at the World Cup three years ago and could meet England again in the quarter-finals, should the Three Lions see off Germany in the tie of the round.
The neutrals could be forgiven for paying less attention to the clash at Hampden, but Shevchenko is hoping his side will be back to their best having already achieved their target of making the knockout phase.
Ukraine pushed the Netherlands all the way in a thrilling 3-2 win for the Dutch on the opening weekend of the tournament before beating North Macedonia 2-1 for their first victory at a European Championship since Shevchenko himself scored twice against Sweden in 2012.
A disappointing 1-0 defeat to Austria followed and Ukraine had to wait two days to find out their fate as a best third-placed side.
Who’s saying what?
Janne Andersson, Sweden head coach
“There is no winning ticket at this stage – every team that is qualified is really good. “You have to take advantage of your chances and do your best to go through.”
Andriy Shevchenko, Ukraine, head coach
“We achieved the result we wanted. We have nothing to lose now. Everything else will be a big bonus for us. The team played very well the first two games, the third game not everything went as we planned. We achieved the result we wanted. Now we have another game to get even more and we’ll do everything we can to achieve a good result.”
Sweden vs Ukraine H2H
Stats and Trivia
• Sweden’s greatest feat to date is reaching, as hosts, the 1958 World Cup final, which they lost 5-2 to Brazil. In their best Euro campaign they progressed to the last four of the 1992 edition, again as hosts, before succumbing 3-2 to Germany.
• Having never featured in a European Championship before co-hosting the 2012 edition with Poland, this is Ukraine’s third successive appearance in the final tournament and first qualification for the knockout phase.
• Despite their two victories at Euro 2020, Sweden have still won only three of their last 11 Euro finals matches (D2 L6), the other a 2-0 win against France on Matchday 3 of Euro 2012.
• Shevchenko’s side finished top of Group B in qualifying for Euro 2020, picking up 20 points from their eight games – three more than holders Portugal. Ukraine remained unbeaten in qualifying, winning six and drawing two. They are one of five sides to not lose a game in the Euro 2020 preliminaries, along with Belgium, Italy – who both won all their fixtures, and continued their winning runs with victories in all three group games – Spain and Denmark.
With AFP and Uefa inputs