Finance

Goldman Sachs predicts England will beat France to secure Euro 2020 quarter final spot

The number crunchers at Goldman Sachs think the England football team will reach the quarter finals of Euro 2020 following their group stage victory over the Czech Republic.

England qualified top of its group after a 1-0 victory at Wembley against the Czechs on 22 June thanks to a goal from Raheem Sterling and a stand-out performance from Arsenal teenager Bukayo Saka.

Goldman had predicted in a pre-tournament research note that Belgium would win the tournament, a prediction which so far still looks to be a good one.

READ Who will win Euro 2020? Goldman Sachs has crunched the numbers

France will be England’s most likely opponent in the first round of knockout games, according to a 23 June update from Goldman analyst Christian Schnittker.

The bank has boldly backed England to prevail over a France team featuring star striker Kylian Mbappe, midfield general Paul Pogba and Chelsea Champions League winner N’Golo Kanté.

“England’s 1—0 win against the Czech Republic will see England back in Wembley next week for the round of 16, as our model had expected. As it stands, our model predicts that France will be England’s most likely opponent,” the note said.

According to Goldman’s model, England will draw 1-1 with the current World Cup holders, before progressing on penalties in their home match at Wembley on 29 June.

Although the prospect of coming up against France in the next round is not one likely to please England fans, they can take some heart in knowing that Goldman’s model accurately predicted England’s 1-0 victory over the Czech Republic.

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However, Goldman’s model then sees England knocked out in the quarter finals by a Spain team that has failed to spark into life so far in the tournament.

Goldman still backs Belgium to win the tournament with a 2-1 victory over the Netherlands in the final on 11 July at London’s Wembley Stadium.

Goldman’s analysts modelled the number of goals that would be scored by each team using data going back to 1980, the original research note said.

The analysts found that the number of goals scored by each side can be explained by the strength of their squad, as measured by the World Football Elo Rating, goals scored and conceded in recent games, home advantage (worth 0.4 goals a game) and “tournament effect”, which shows some countries tend to outperform their usual rating in major competitions.

“It is difficult to assess how much faith one should have in these predictions,” the original note said in a disclaimer. “The forecasts are highly uncertain, even with sophisticated statistical techniques, simply because football is quite an unpredictable game. This is, of course, precisely why football is so exciting to watch,” the note added.

The tournament is taking place a year behind schedule because of the coronavirus crisis.

To contact the author of this story with feedback or news, email James Booth

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