PentaSpotlight: 24 Euro 2016 Nations

How brilliant have the Euros been so far!? We’re so excited about what’s to come!

You can catch Every Euro 2016 match live in every pentalounge! So, why not check-in with pentahotels and enjoy all the action within the comfort of a chic and stylish bar space…you’ll be anything but bored. #PentaLovesFootball

Catch ALL the action in every pentalounge...
Catch ALL the action in every pentalounge…

Here’s a little insight into each of the 24 competing nations…

France:

World Ranking: 17

Pogba could well be France's tournament hero...
Pogba could well be France’s tournament hero…

Key Player: Paul Pogba

Since their tournament victory at Euro 2000, the French have only gone as far as the quarter finals at the Euros…this me be the year they are able to dominate Europe once again!

Romania

World Ranking: 22

Key Player: Vlad Chiriches

In 13 matches, Romania have only won once at the European Championships…that was against England in 2000 when they were awarded a last minute penalty.

Switzerland

World Ranking: 15

Key Player: Xherdan Shaqiri

Switzerland had the second most shots in qualifying (155), yet they only finished 2nd in their qualifying group…they’ll want to make sure they brush up on their accuracy.

Albania

World Ranking: 42

Key Player: Lorik Cana

These guys need to find their shooting boots if they’re to make an impression at the tournament! They had the fewest shots on target (28) of any team to qualify for the Euros!

England

World Ranking: 11

'Hurricane Harry' could light up this tournament...
‘Hurricane Harry’ could light up this tournament…

Key Player: Harry Kane

The only team to have won the World Cup but never the Euros…however they’re only the 6th team to have qualified with 100% win record, so could this be their year?

Russia

World Ranking: 29

Key Player: Roman Shirokov

Although only scoring 18 goals in qualifying, Russia where credited with a 3-0 win over Montenegro in their final group match because attacks were carried out on the players resulting in the match being abandoned.

Wales:

World Ranking: 26

No doubt one of the world's best...
No doubt one of the world’s best…

Key Player: Gareth Bale

This will only be the second major tournament Wales have featured in, the first being the 1958 World Cup! National hero Gareth Bale scored 64% of Wales goals on their route to the finals!

Slovakia:

World Ranking: 24

Key Player: Marek Hamsik

These guys don’t seem to like to play with the ball…they only had an average of 43% possession in the qualifying stages, which was the lowest of any team to reach the finals. They’ll need more than that if they’ve got a change of getting through!

Germany:

World Ranking: 4

Key Player: Toni Kroos

Germany have won this competition 3 times (1972/1980/1996). They have the youngest squad at this year’s Euros with an average age of 25 years and 296 days. Can this new generation bring home a 4th title?

Ukraine:

World Ranking: 19

Key Player: Andriy Yarmolenko

They’ll just be delighted to be at the tournament after beating Slovenia in a Playoff…Ukraine had lost their previous five playoff matches, four for the World Cup and one for the European Championships.

Northern Ireland:

World Ranking: 25

Key Player: Steven Davis

This is Northern Ireland’s first appearance at the European Championships…so they’ve got a tough ride ahead. However, they’ve done ever so well to get there and were the first nation seeded fifth in qualifying to win a group!

Poland

World Ranking: 27

Regarded by many as the world's best striker...
Regarded by many as the world’s best striker…

Key Player: Robert Lewandowski

Poland’s lethal striker Robert Lewandowski is regarded by many as the world’s best out and out striker…His 13 goals in qualifying equalled the record for most goals in the preliminary stages.

Croatia:

World Ranking: 27

Key Player: Luka Modric

It’s tough to get a better centre midfield pairing Croatia’s. Luka Modric plays at the heart of the Real Madrid midfield, whilst Ivan Rakitic is the engine room for Barcelona. Both are world class talents.

Czech Republic:

World Ranking: 30

Key Player: Petr Cech

They’ll want to shore up their defence before their first match…The Czech’s conceded the most goals (16) out of all the teams to qualify and thus Petr Cech will be vital in goal if they are to get through their group.

Spain:

World Ranking: 6

Ramos has been an integral part of the Spanish squad...
Ramos has been an integral part of the Spanish squad…

Key Player: Sergio Ramos

The current holders managed a feat never achieved by anyone else when they retained their title 4 years ago…3 in a row would be quite something!

Turkey:

World Ranking: 18

Key Player: Arda Turan

Their previous 3 European Championships have seen them progress deeper into the tournament each time…they’d have to win this year’s to continue that pattern, which isn’t likely to happen.

Belgium

World Ranking: 2

Key Player: Eden Hazard

The highest ranked team in the tournament…This is a side that’s been labelled the ‘Golden Generation,’ of Belgian football. However, they will be without influential captain, Vincent Kompany, who is out through injury.

Italy:

World Ranking: 12

Key Player: Gianluigi Buffon

Italy’s veteran Goalkeeper, Gianluigi Buffon, has achieved 157 caps (and counting)  for his country and is highly regarded as one of the greatest Goalkeepers ever.

Republic of Ireland

World Ranking: 33

Key Player: Robbie Keane:

When Republic of Ireland secured their place in the tournament through the playoffs, it meant four of the five countries that made up the UK had qualified…Scotland were the only team to miss out.

Sweden

World Ranking: 35

Mr Sweden...Mr Arrogant...
Mr Sweden…Mr Arrogant…

Key Player: Zlatan Ibrahimović

National hero and global icon, Zlatan Ibrahimović, has won league titles in Italy, France, Spain and Holland…an incredible player with an incredible ego.

Austria

World Ranking: 10

Key Player: David Alaba

They achieved unbeaten status in their route to the finals, gaining 28 points! This was only second to England who achieved the perfect 30. Since 2008 when they co-hosted the tournament, they’ve rose 95 places in the world rankings…Amazing!

Hungary

World Ranking: 20

Key Player: Tamas Priskin

Hungary were given a mind blowing 38 yellow cards during the qualifying stages, however they did not receive one red card…

Iceland:

World Ranking: 34

Key Player: Gylfi Sigursson

This is Iceland’s first appearance at a major tournament…hardly surprising due to their minuscule population of 320,000 people! Many people will be rooting for them this summer…

Portugal

World Ranking: 8

The hopes of a nation on this man's shoulders...
The hopes of a nation on this man’s shoulders…

Key Player: Cristiano Ronaldo

Many see Portugal captain, Cristiano Ronaldo, as the best player in the world…his jaw dropping rivalry with Argentina’s Lionel Messi, could be decided on their international success! If Ronaldo can steer Portugal to victory, his profile will become even bigger!

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