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Euro 2024 Power Rankings – Round of 16: Spanish class jumps to the top, Turkiye surges up while the Italians stumble

With the first round of knockouts complete, we are now getting to the pointy end of the tournament with only eight teams remaining to win the Henri Delaunay trophy.

So, with the quarterfinals beginning on Saturday morning, let’s look at the eight quarter-finalists and the eight nations eliminated in the Round of 16.

1. Spain (Previous Position: 2)
After conceding the first goal for the first time in the tournament in the 18th minute, Spain was in a position they had not been in all this tournament which was behind. Out of all the teams they could be down to it was Georgia.

While Spain was unlucky to concede first, they were far and away the better side throughout the 90 minutes as expected.

Eventually, it would show on the scoreboard as they equalised before the half and then scored three in the second half for a 4-1 win ensuring their passage to the quarterfinals. While this would be an expected result, it still was an impressive result.

To add to it, every time Spain has had more than three wins at a major men’s tournament, the nation has gone on to make the final and win.

With a quarterfinal match against Germany which promises to be the biggest matchup at the tournament so far, it will be worth staying up for the 2am kick-off.

2. Germany (Previous Position: 1)
Germany would not have rain ruin their parade onto the quarterfinals in Dortmund.

In the first ten minutes, Germany had come out firing with three outstanding attempts on goal and had it not been for a foul in the build-up of Nico Schlotterbeck’s header in the third minute would have been 1-0 up.

Instead, they would have to wait until the second half to get on the scoreboard with Kai Havertz converting a penalty after VAR detected a handball from a Danish defender.

Germany was able to make the most of their opportunities and made the most of Denmark’s misfortune.

While they both had the same number of shots, Germany had 60% of their shots on target while Denmark had 18% of their shots on target.

They now play Spain in the quarterfinals should make for one of the best matchups at the tournament so far.

Jamal Musiala of Germany. (Photo by Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images)

3. France (Previous Position: 3)
France manages to once again beat Belgium in a knockout game at a major tournament with another 1-0 as they did in the 2018 World Cup semi-final.

Despite generating 19 shots at goal, they could only manage to get two of those on target.

In comparison, Belgium who had the same number of shots on target did so from five total shots.

What makes it even more interesting is that France only scored from an own goal with a Jan Vertonghen deflection seeing Randal Kolo Muani’s shot go in.

This now sees France’s streak of not scoring from open play continue for five consecutive games which last happened back in 2013.

France’s next match in the tournament will be against Portugal which will be the third consecutive Euros that they played against each other which includes the Euro 2016 final and a Euro 2020 group stage match.

4. Portugal (Previous Position: 4)
Portugal had to take the long way around to get past Slovenia but managed to make the next round.

Portugal was in control for the majority of the game and realistically could have won the game in regular time, the Slovenian defence managed to hold themselves in with Jan Oblak making some outstanding saves to deny Portugal.

But when the moment came, it would be the Portuguese keeper Diogo Costa who stood up for Portugal saving all three of Slovenia’s shots within the penalty shootout.

With these efforts, it would see him awarded with the man of the match and see Portugal survive.

With their penalty shootout win, they will now play in a rematch of the Euro 2016 final against France in the quarters as they look to make their fifth semifinal at the Euros at their ninth appearance.

5. England (Previous Position: 5)
With the knock-out game deep into additional time, it looked like England may be resigned to the fact that Slovenia would win and would have likely drawn an end to Gareth Southgate’s tenure as England manager.

It looked like it was going to be the same story as they had done for the last three games where they dominated possession but struggled to convert into meaningful opportunities but this time their opponents managed to score first.

Their only shot on target in the 95th minute came to fruition with a bicycle kick from England’s latest star boy Jude Bellingham.

England's Jude Bellingham celebrates scoring their side's first goal of the game during the UEFA Euro 2024 Group C match at the Arena AufSchalke in Gelsenkirchen, Germany. Picture date: Sunday June 16, 2024. (Photo by Martin Rickett/PA Images via Getty Images)

England’s Jude Bellingham. (Photo by Martin Rickett/PA Images via Getty Images)

In what he has described as “one of the most important moments of my career so far”, it will likely be the first of many.

Harry Kane’s header within the first minute of extra time saw England in the space of three minutes turn it around and stay alive for another game.

England now goes into a quarter-final match-up against Switzerland.

6. Switzerland (Previous Position: 8)
It’s now back-to-back quarterfinal appearances at the Euros for Switzerland with an impressive 2-0 win over Italy.

Switzerland may have been the slight underdogs but quickly showed that they were the better team and deserved this victory from the outset.

They dominated the first half against the defending champions and were rewarded with a goal through Remo Freuler.

Within 30 seconds of the second half, Brendan Vargas who assisted Freuler’s goal scored his own which saw him pick up the Man of the Match award.

With a below-par England waiting for them in the quarterfinals, the Swiss might just be able to make a semi-final appearance for the first time.

7. Netherlands (Previous Position: 6)
While the Netherlands had finished third in their group behind Austria and France, they were able to demonstrate against Romania that they were far better than their third-place finish.

Despite that third-place finish, the Netherlands were still the favourites to win the game which they did so in a 3-0 win.

In easily the best game that the Netherlands have played this tournament, they seemed to be able to get Romania to turn the ball over far more than what they had done against their Group D opponents with nine of their 17 interceptions coming from this game helping increase their possession rate.

On an attacking end, the trio of Cody Gapko, Xavi Simons and Donyell Malen would be the ones to get the Netherlands on the scoreboard with Simons with two assists, Malen with two goals and Gapko with one of each helping get that result.

With the win against Romania, they will now play Turkey in the quarterfinals.

Arda Güler (C) of Turkiye celebrates after scoring his side's second goal during the UEFA EURO 2024 group stage match between Turkiye and Georgia at Football Stadium Dortmund on June 18, 2024 in Dortmund, Germany. (Photo by Etsuo Hara/Getty Images)

Arda Güler (C) of Turkiye. (Photo by Etsuo Hara/Getty Images)

8. Turkiye (previous position: 20)
After being labelled the dark horses in 2020 and not picking up a point, Turkiye this time around has slid under the radar and now sees themselves in the final eight with a 2-1 win against Austria.

Both goals would come from corners with a near ‘Olimpico goal’ from Arda Guler in the first minute resulting in a ball pinballing between the Austrian defenders within the penalty area only to find Merih Demiral’s left foot to give Turkiye the lead.

Then 58 minutes later, Arda Guler from another corner would find Merih Demiral’s head and give Turkiye an unassailable lead.

To do this without Hakan Calhanoglu who has been the mainstay of this Turkiye side as a result of suspension was an impressive performance.

They now progress to the quarterfinals for the first time at the Euros since 2008.

They will play the Netherlands who will also be at the quarterfinals for the first time at the Euros since 2008.

9. Austria (Previous Position: 11)
After having topped Group E against both France and the Netherlands, Austria was coming into the match as the favourite to win against Turkey and make the quarterfinals of a major tournament for the first time since the 1954 World Cup.

Unfortunately for Austria, this would not be the case as they would fall short losing to Turkey 2-1.

This was despite following the habits that they have done across the group stage which included being able to recover the ball within the attacking half creating more chances which they managed to do within 14.5% of their recoveries compared to Turkey’s 0% but only scored the one goal.

But they could deal with corners that would see them eliminated as they conceded two goals from Turkey’s four corners for the entire match.

10. Belgium (Previous Position: 9)
Belgium sees their tournament end at the hands of their neighbours to the west in a 1-nil loss to France.

Throughout the entire game, they struggled to get the ball within their attacking half to generate chances with only 182 passes in their attacking half and 84 in the final third.

That was compared to France’s 414 passes in the attacking half and 232 passes in the final third which saw them eventually score albeit through an own goal from Jan Vertonghen.

The end of their tournament now serves as a crossroads for this Belgium side.

With nine players out of the 26-man squad being over the age of thirty, likely, the core of Romelu Lukaku, Kevin De Bruyne and Vertonghen amongst others will either have played their last Euros or will have a reduced role which draws a close to a golden generation.

The question now is how much the next generation with the likes of Jeremy Doku, Amadou Onana and Arthur Theate can replicate their previous generation’s consistency of knockout appearances at major tournaments.

European Championship, Croatia - Italy, Preliminary round, Group B, Matchday 3, Leipzig Arena, Croatia's Josip Stanisic kneels on the pitch after the 1:1 final score. Photo: Jan Woitas/dpa (Photo by Jan Woitas/picture alliance via Getty Images)

 (Photo by Jan Woitas/picture alliance via Getty Images)

11. Italy (Previous Position: 7)
After their great escape against Croatia, Italy could not pull off a similar result against Switzerland seeing them knocked out of the tournament.

They looked better in the second half, particularly towards the last 20 minutes as they were fighting for their survival but could not find the goal despite their seven shots at goal during that period to Switzerland’s two.

Italy had struggled throughout the tournament to turn their attacks into shots on goal to challenge their opposition.

Only managing 22.7% shots on target within the tournament would always make it tough to get any further, especially when you are playing the nation that has the best efficiency on goal.

Italy with that loss will now follow in the trend of defending champions being knocked out in the Round of 16 since the tournament expanded to 24 teams in 2016.

12. Denmark (Previous Position: 12)
Denmark would see themselves knocked out by the host nation in a 2-0 loss with VAR having a big impact on their result.

After the first ten minutes, Denmark did manage to withhold the hot start from Germany and from there would make it an even game between the two for the first half.

With what looked like a goal from Joachim Andersen from a set piece in the 48th minute, it looked to turn the game in Denmark’s favour.

However, that would be short-lived with VAR overturning the call.

After having his goal overruled by VAR for having his toe offside in the 48th minute, Andersen would ultimately be responsible for Germany’s penalty after VAR detected his handball only three minutes later.

While they came into this match having done a New Zealand at the 2010 World Cup and drew all their group games, they just came against better opposition and were not able to make their chances count.

De Bruyne Kevin forward of Belgium and referee Umut Meler (TUR) during the UEFA EURO 2024 European Football Championship tournament group E stage match between Belgium and Slovakia at Frankfurt Arena on June 17, 2024 in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, 17/06/2024 ( Photo by Vincent Kalut / Photo News via Getty Images)

De Bruyne Kevin forward of Belgium. ( Photo by Vincent Kalut / Photo News via Getty Images)

13. Romania (Previous Position: 16)
Romania in their first knockout game at a major tournament since Euro 2000 would end in a 3-0 loss to the Netherlands.

While the Netherlands looked the better team, Romania were somewhat in the game within the second half despite a poor first half.

But it was in the last ten minutes which would seal the game with the Netherlands scoring two goals for a 3-0 win.

Romania also struggled with the number of passes completed only managing 271 compared to the Netherlands’ 500.

This has been an issue throughout the tournament with completed passes having the least amount amongst the teams that made the knockout stage and the second lowest pass completion rate amongst the knockout teams.

While they would have wanted to go further in the tournament, Romania through its generation of soul has still exceeded expectations by even making the knockouts and did so by topping Group E.

14. Slovenia (previous position: 18)
In their first knockout game at a major tournament as an independent country, Slovenia goes out in the most heartbreaking way losing in a penalty shootout.

Slovenia played admirably to keep themselves within the game.

The defence albeit at times ill-disciplined managed to hold Portugal at bay managing 16 tackles won which has been an area that Slovakia has led in throughout the tournament as well as five blocks for shots at goal which they have been in the top three for the entire tournament with 23.

Jan Oblak would have a captain’s performance with five saves including his save against Cristiano Ronaldo from the penalty spot at the 105th minute.

They certainly had their chances benefiting from some Portuguese turnovers within their attacking half with their best opportunity coming with six minutes left of extra time when Benjamin Šeško had a one-on-one opportunity only to be denied by Diogo Costa’s right leg.

But with their three penalties in the shootout, all being saved, it ultimately draws the curtain on Slovenia’s campaign at the Euros.

15. Slovakia (Previous Position: 17)
They came so close. Slovakia was only 90 seconds away from pulling off another upset against England and making the quarterfinals for the first time as an independent country.

But a magic moment from Jude Bellingham would bring Slovakia to reality and a Harry Kane header in extra time would bring them to the harsh reality of being eliminated in the Round of 16.

Slovakia should hold their head high for the entire 120 minutes as they were really good defensively achieving 44 clearances compared to England’s nine as well as being better in the air with 55% of aerial duels won.

Unfortunately for Slovakia, England’s only two shots on target would be the two goals that they scored.

16. Georgia (Previous Position: 24)
In Georgia’s biggest game in the country’s history against powerhouse Spain, they were swamped from the outset and looked like they were in for a long day.

But when they got their chance, they made it count as they did this entire tournament with a fast break chance in the 18th minute resulting in an own goal from Robin Le Normand and giving Georgia the lead and a chance to complete one of the greatest upsets in Euros history.

While it was certainly not a lack of trying, Spain would put four past Georgia and romp their way through despite the efforts of players such as Giorgi Mamardashvili with his nine saves amongst others.

It was a big step to qualify for a major tournament regardless of how well they did.

But for them to make the knockouts probably surprised every Georgian.

They have been one of the feel-good stories for the tournament and further show how much depth in quality there is amongst the European nations.

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