Delayed for a year due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the 13th edition of the Women's Football Euro finally takes place from July 6 to 31 in England.

After the success of the 2019 World Cup, organized in France, football fans will have their eyes on this summit of European women's football for three weeks.

Host country England is also a favourite.

Fourth in the last World Cup, the Three Lionesses have occupied center stage for several years.

But to try to win this trophy at home, Sarina Wiegman's players will have to face serious competitors.

Winners in 2017, the Netherlands intend to achieve the double.

Undefeated since April 2021, the French women also hope to win their first major title.

Long accustomed to the first places, the Swedes are always at the rendezvous during major competitions, while Spain, the rising team, can create a surprise.

  • England on home mission

England defender Rachel Daly celebrates her goal with her teammates on June 16, 2022, against Belgium.

AFP - GEOFF CADDICK

If England is one of the oldest teams in women's football, the Three Lionesses have not yet won any international title in their history.

While the Women's Euro takes place on their soil, the English have only one goal: to finally open their trophy cabinet.

Finalists of the competition in 1984 and 2009, the players of Sarina Wiegman want to forget the disappointment of the World Cup-2019.

Classified among the favorites of the World Cup, they had finished in a disappointing fourth place, despite a good run.

For several years, the English team has been a scarecrow in all major tournaments.

The coach can count on experienced players like defenders Steph Houghton and Lucy Bronze as well as striker Fran Kirby, but also on young nuggets like Manchester United prodigy Ella Toone.

While professional women's football has developed considerably in recent years in England with major clubs such as Manchester City, Arsenal and Chelsea, players can also rely on immense popular support.

In 2019, a friendly match between England and Germany attracted more than 77,000 spectators to the legendary Wembley Stadium.

  • The Netherlands: objective doubled

The Dutch players celebrate their goal during the match against England on June 24, 2022. AFP - NIGEL RODDIS

Defending champions, the Dutch are the team to beat.

For ten years, the players of Mark Parsons have been part of the cream of Europe.

After strengthening their status by reaching the final of the 2019 World Cup, the Netherlands want to confirm and why not afford a double, a feat only achieved by Germany (8 titles). 

On an individual level, the Oranje have striker Lieke Martens in their ranks, freshly hired by PSG, one of the sensations of world football.

Best player of the Euro-2017 won by her country, she was elected the same year best UEFA player and best FIFA world player.

Her team-mate, Arsenal striker Vivianne Miedema holds the national team goal record with 92 goals in 109 matches. 

  • France in search of a first title

Les Bleues with their coach Corinne Deacon, during training, June 21, 2022. AFP - FRANCK FIFE

Always cited, never champion, France has been running for years behind a first title.

Even if they are among the best nations in the world, Les Bleues are struggling to achieve during major events.

In the European Championship, they have never done better than a quarter-final (2009, 2013 and 2017).

After failing at the same stage at their home World Cup in 2019, Corinne Deacon's players want revenge.

Since this failure, they have been in bulldozer mode.

Undefeated since April 13, 2021 and a friendly match lost against the American ogres (0-2), the French are full of confidence.

To finally win this trophy which they miss so much, the coach has been fine-tuning for several months a workforce made up of former defenders, like Wendie Renard or Marion Torrent and young explosives like attackers Marie-Antoinette Katoto or Melvine Malard.

Les Bleues, on the other hand, will have to do without figures like Amandine Henry and Eugénie Le Sommer, dismissed by Corinne Deacon. 

  • Sweden still at the forefront

The Swedish team celebrate their victory in the Algarve Cup on February 23, 2022. AFP - JORGE GUERRERO

The Swedes never miss an opportunity to rise to the top of European football and are seen as pioneers.

Victorious at the European Championship in 1984, the Tre Kronor also participated in the final in 1987, 1995 and 2001. Not to mention a silver medal at the 2003 World Cup and another, more recently at the last Tokyo Olympics .

Since this final lost in Japan against Canada on penalties last August, they have not experienced a single defeat. 

Sweden can rely on the experience of their star player.

At 26, Arsenal striker Stina Blackstenius already has a long career behind her and has been in the squad since 2015. Coach Peter Gerhardsson has a fairly old squad, but is also pushing young nuggets like the Everton midfielder Hanna Bennison, just 19 years old.

  • Spain in ambush

The Spaniards celebrate one of their goals against Scotland on April 12, 2022. AFP - ANDY BUCHANAN

La Roja could well be the surprise team of this Euro-2022.

Despite a still virgin record, the Spaniards are beginning to shake their opponents.

In recent years, Primera Division clubs have made a name for themselves on the international scene, like FC Barcelona, ​​finalist in the last Champions League.

Spain has reached the quarter-finals at the last two European Championships and reached the round of 16 of the 2019 World Cup.

Coach Jorge Vilda has managed to build a competitive team which now includes some stars, such as the last Ballon d'Or Alexia Putellas, striker Jennifer Hermoso or midfielder Aitana Bonmati, who all play for FC Barcelona.

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