UEFA Euro 2016 Group B Highlight: England vs. Russia

England will meet Rusia in the coming EuroFans who bet on soccer will be eager to see England encounter Russia again for the first time since a Euro 2008 qualifier in 2007. On that occasion, the Russian team defeated the England squad 2-1 in Moscow. This may bring English soccer betting fans bad memories; Russia finished second in the group and qualified to the Euro Cup, while England went on lose the last qualifying match to Croatia and fail to qualify to the tournament. England had previously won the home game 3-0 at Wembley including a pair of goals by Michael Owen (fun fact: Michael Owen is currently a breeder and owner of race horses).

Interestingly, the two direct confrontations mentioned above pretty much sum up the England-Russia head-to-head history. However, when Russia was still the Soviet Union it not only clashed with the British a few times but also pretty much dominated them. For fans who bet on soccer who are too young to remember, the USSR beat Britannia 3-1 in Frankfurt at the Euro 1988 on its way to the final, which it lost 0-2 to the Netherlands (England went home with zero points and only two goals scored). Twenty years prior, England defeated the Soviet Union 2-0 in the Euro 1968 in Rome in the third place playoff match – England’s best finish in the tournament (they matched it as hosts of the 1996 edition).

Soccer betting fans may be interested to know that England has not lost over 90 minute periods – or extraordinary 120 minute periods – in 22 Euro Cup games since the aforementioned loss to Croatia 2-3. The team’s record since that November 2007 day – including qualifying matches – is 17-5-0 (their only loss so far came on penalties in the quarterfinals of the Euro 2012, when they were eliminated by Italy). England is only the sixth team to achieve a perfect record in a Euro qualifier, winning all 10 games en route to France 2016. The only time England has failed to qualify to a Euro tourney was the aforementioned 2008 Cup, largely thanks to Russia.

As hinted above, Russia’s golden age came under the hammer and sickle banner – they won the inaugural European Championship in 1960, and finished second in 1964, 1972, and 1988. As Russia proper, they made it to the semifinals in 2008. This will be Russia’s fourth consecutive Euro appearance – and fifth out of six as an independent state, making them a fixture in seven of the last eight editions. They were also featured as the Commonwealth of Independent States in 1992 in Sweden. That is, in a nutshell, everything that fans who bet on soccer could ever want to know about this matchup.