euro 2020 player performances up to the final ranked
euro 2020 player performances up to the final ranked

Euro 2020: Player performances up to the final – ranked

A gripping European Championship is over and Italy are champions for the first time since 1968.

But how did the Azzurri’s top performers compare statistically to the other standout players at the tournament?

Using Opta’s player index – which calculates ratings based on data collected from every game – Stats Perform can reveal the leading 20 Euros stars.

Starting at 20, this countdown unsurprisingly ends at one with an Italian champion…

Romelu Lukaku

Lukaku led Belgium up front / Isosport/MB Media/Getty Images

As Kevin De Bruyne and Eden Hazard managed injuries, Lukaku was front and centre for Belgium – and he did not disappoint. Not only did he score three non-penalty goals, the Inter forward also had a hand in his team-mates succeeding.

Despite completing just 57 per cent of his open-play passes when required to lead the line alone so often, Lukaku was involved in five goal-ending sequences – behind only Harry Kane and Raheem Sterling.

Luke Shaw

Shaw scored in the final / Paul Ellis – Pool/Getty Images

Eyebrows were raised when Gareth Southgate picked Kieran Trippier over Shaw at left-back for their tournament opener,but he’s since gone on to enjoy a wonderful campaign – for a while it looked like he had scored the goal to secure England the trophy as well.

While the Three Lions ultimately fell short, Shaw’s approval ratings will be through the roof given he created more chances (10) than any other England player and also got three assists, a figure only Steven Zuber (four) can beat.

Marcos Llorente

Llorente played in a number of roles for Spain / Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

Llorente, nominally a midfielder, played a number of roles at this tournament, both from the start and from the bench. The Atletico Madrid man actually started the tournament at right-back until Cesar Azpilicueta won back his place.

But Llorente was heavily involved wherever he was stationed, making 107.3 touches per 90 minutes – the fifth-most among players who featured for 100 minutes or more. He completed 93 per cent of his open-play passes, too.

Koke

Koke before Spain’s semi final against Italy / Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

It was not that long ago when Koke struggled to even get in the Spain squad, yet only three Roja outfield players played more minutes at Euro 2020 than him and he performed an important role that might have taken some by surprise.

The Atletico Madrid midfielder displayed effective destructive tendencies, with his 11 tackles won the joint-most of all players, and his man-marking job on Marco Verratti helped dull the Paris Saint-Germain star’s influence in the semi-final.

Harry Maguire

Maguire was excellent in defence for England / Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Had he not missed England’s first two games, there’s a strong possibility Maguire would rank significantly higher given the quality of his performances, which saw him combine his physical dominance with his trademark composure on the ball.

Only six centre-backs covered more ground than him while carrying the ball upfield (542.75 metres), highlighting his progressive mentality, while Maguire won 84 per cent of his aerials and 79.1 per cent of all duels, both of which were the second-highest figures at Euro 2020 (among players who contested at least 20).

Emil Forsberg, Dejan Kulusevski

Forsberg was Sweden’s main goal threat / Maxim Shemetov – Pool/Getty Images

Alexander Isak sparkled in Sweden’s first match against Spain, but it was Forsberg who took over the reins after that. He attempted 14 of the team’s 41 shots (31.4 per cent) and scored four of their five goals.

With limited creativity elsewhere in the side, Forsberg was required to make something out of nothing – and he often succeeded. His 13 non-penalty shots were worth just 0.99 expected goals (xG) and two of his goals came following carries.

Thomas Meunier, Thomas Vermaelen, Toby Alderweireld

Vermaelen came back into Belgium’s defence / Marcio Machado/Getty Images

Already 35 at this tournament, Vermaelen may not play on this stage again but did more than most to keep Belgium in the competition.

A dependable presence at the back, the Vissel Kobe defender led the Red Devils in interceptions (seven) and blocks (six) and ranked second in tackles (eight) and clearances (11) while also completing 92.9 per cent of his passes.

Xherdan Shaqiri

Shaqiri turned up for Switzerland / Anton Vaganov – Pool/Getty Images

Switzerland were surprise quarter-finalists but went home disappointed after failing to repeat their penalty shoot-out success against France, resulting in them losing to Spain.

Shaqiri still delivered, though. His fourth Euros goal set a Switzerland record, as did his 17th outing at a major tournament. He ended the campaign with three goals, matching his tally from the 2014 World Cup.

Leonardo Spinazzola

Spinazzola missed the final through injury / Claudio Villa/Getty Images

It did not matter in the end as Italy claimed the trophy, but Spinazzola was undoubtedly missed after tearing his anterior cruciate ligament in the last eight.

The wing-back had been instrumental in driving Italy forward, attempting (18) and completing (seven) dribbles, ranking him second among defenders for the tournament in both categories. Of Spinazzola’s seven shots and eight chances created, six and three respectively were following carries.

Joakim Maehle

Maehle was excellent in Denmark’s defence / Eurasia Sport Images/Getty Images

Another of several full-backs to impress at Euro 2020, Maehle introduced himself to a new audience as he caught the eye with his lung-busting runs up the left flank.

Granted, he was fairly quiet against England as he failed to get a shot away for the first time in the tournament, but his two goal-ending ball carries for the tournament highlights his positivity and he certainly comes out the other side of Euro 2020 with his reputation enhanced.

Paul Pogba, Presnel Kimpembe

Pogba was excellent but France bowed out early / Daniel Mihailescu – Pool/Getty Images

Rightly or wrongly, Pogba has been accused of going missing when it matters most at times in his career, but it’s fair to say he was excellent prior to France’s elimination.

So often he was at the heart of Les Bleus’ play with his dynamic ability on the ball and fine passing range, which contributed to his team-high 28 shot-ending sequences and seven open-play key passes, also the best among France players.

John Stones

Stones brings the ball out of defence / Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images

After something of a coming-of-age season at Manchester City, Stones brought his club form into Euro 2020 and has finished it as the highest-ranking centre-back.

Ease in possession has always been Stones’ strength and it was routinely on show here, with his 137 ball carries the fourth highest of all players involved, while he had an identical ranking for the amount of successful passes (447), with playing out from the back a key feature for Gareth Southgate’s beaten finalists.

Pedri

Pedri is Spain’s big midfield hope / Frank Augstein – Pool/Getty Images

The favourite for the Young Player of the Tournament award? Barcelona talent Pedri is surely in with a good shout, with the 18-year-old putting in several displays that showed a maturity belying his age.

Sure, his lack of goals and assists might leave some questioning what he did, but only three players created more chances than his 10 in open play, while the 7.86 xG value of sequences he was involved in was the best in the tournament, which shows just how much influence he held in Spain’s build-up play despite being so new to international football.

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Schick starred for the Czech Republic / DARKO VOJINOVIC/Getty Images

Few players will have boosted their reputation more than Schick at Euro 2020, whose five goals is the joint-most with Cristiano Ronaldo – though the Czech Republic star’s four from open play was double that of the Portugal talisman.

Additionally, Schick unquestionably got the goal of the tournament with his remarkable effort against Scotland that was measured at 49.7 yards, the longest-range goal in the Euros since at least 1980. A Euros ‘breakout star’ if there ever was one.

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Hradecky impressed for Finland / KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/Getty Images

Hradecky only featured in three games and scored an own goal – albeit a particularly unfortunate one – but he stood out for Finland as they conceded only three times.

The Bayer Leverkusen goalkeeper made an impressive 15 saves, working out at 5.0 per 90 minutes – second only to Turkey’s Ugurcan Cakir. Hradecky was also among only six keepers to save a penalty outside of a shoot-out.

Robert Lewandowski

Lewandowski couldn’t fire Poland to Euro 2020 glory / Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

A Bayern Munich great, Lewandowski has struggled to translate his outstanding club form to the international stage – at least at major tournaments. He scored 16 times in qualifying for the 2018 World Cup but did not net once in Russia.

This tournament provided a different story, even if Poland still went out in the group stage. Lewandowski tallied three goals from chances worth 2.38 xG and also created three opportunities worth a combined 1.65 expected assists (xA).

Jordi Alba

Alba’s Spain were knocked out by Italy / Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

While Alba’s rather sheepish reaction to Giorgio Chiellini’s alarmingly at-ease playfulness prior to the semi-final shoot-out may be the enduring image associated with the left-back’s tournament, it should not be forgotten that he was actually a key cog in a Spain team who were unfortunate to miss out on a spot in the final.

His exceptional work rate was summed up by the fact his 45 recoveries ranked third, while Alba’s impressive creative output saw him accumulate 2.41 xA from open play, which was a tournament high.

Kasper Dolberg

Dolberg impressed up front for Denmark / Valetin Ogirenko – Pool/Getty Images

Having struggled during his second season at Nice, Dolberg’s standing in the game certainly was not what many would have expected after his breakthrough as a teenager at Ajax.

But at Euro 2020, after coming in for the injured Yussuf Poulsen, Dolberg provided a timely reminder of his talents, as he scored three over the course of the tournament, a haul that only two Danes have ever bettered at a major competition.

Jorginho

It’s been a good year for Jorginho / Claudio Villa/Getty Images

At club level with Chelsea, some might say Jorginho is underappreciated or misunderstood, but after his exploits at Euro 2020 many may see him in a different light, with his ball retention skills and ability to dictate the play vital to how Italy have played at this tournament.

While he struggled somewhat in the semi-final against Spain, he finished the tournament with the third-most touches (621) and was second only to Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg for recoveries (48) among outfield players, highlighting his effectiveness at getting the Azzurri back on the front foot.

Marco Verratti

The best player at the tournament? / Claudio Villa/Getty Images

Verratti’s spot at the top of the rankings is all the more impressive given Italy began the tournament without him. After Manuel Locatelli’s two-goal display on matchday two, some may have wondered whether he would get back in the team, but Mancini restored him to the XI and he has been virtually flawless since.

While Jorginho dictates from a little deeper, Verratti has thrived with the creative responsibility further forward – as shown by his tournament-high 14 chances created – but also mucked in off the ball, with his intensity and unbeaten five tackles in the final helping to suffocate England in possession.