As any proud Hammer will testify, West Ham United won the World Cup in 1966.
England, as a team, lifted the Jules Rimet Trophy at Wembley Stadium on July 30 almost 50 years ago, but they were captained by West Ham’s Bobby Moore, while all four of their goals in that famous 4-2 final victory over West Germany were scored by men residing at Upton Park.
So, the glory belongs to West Ham. And, using that twisted East End logic, here are five clubs who are in with a chance of winning Euro 2016.
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Five Liverpool players have been called up to England’s provisional 26-man squad and all of them – Nathaniel Clyne, Jordan Henderson, James Milner, Adam Lallana and Daniel Sturridge – are likely to make the cut when Roy Hodgson trims his party to 23.
Clyne looks likely to start as first-choice right-back for the Three Lions, whose midfield could be very Red indeed. But if one Liverpool star is going to make the difference, it will likely be Sturridge. He’s not Hodgson’s no.1 pick upfront, so he might have to do his damage from the bench initially, but his speed and super finishing skills could fire England to glory if they go deep in France.
If Liverpool don’t win the Euros for England, they could inspire Belgium to victory instead.
Second in the FIFA World Rankings – behind only Argentina – Belgium should arguably be favourites going into the finals. And the world football’s no.2 nation may have to rely upon Liverpool stars at both ends of the pitch. Christian Benteke and Divock Origi will be tasked with scoring goals for Belgium, while Reds goalkeeper Simon Mignolet will be in charge of keeping them out, should Thibaut Courtois lose form or fitness.
Just like Liverpool, Spurs players account for 19.23% of Hodgson’s 26-man England squad. And, although Kyle Walker is unlikely to start, fellow full-back Danny Rose probably will, behind the likes of Eric Dier, Dele Alli and Premier League Golden Boot-winner Harry Kane.
England’s starting attack is set to be built around the partnership between lead frontman Kane and 20-year-old no.10 Alli. Even the most patriotic West Ham fan would probably feel a little sick if the young Tottenham pair led the charge and carried England all the way!
The similarities between Spurs and Liverpool continue, as Tottenham are also providing Belgium will three of their finest.
Centre-backs Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen will be key men for the Red Devils, as will midfield powerhouse Mousa Dembele. The trio only have 12 international goals between them, though – from 188 combined caps – so they probably won’t manage to achieve exactly what immortal Hammers Geoff Hurst and Martin Peters did in ’66.
Bundesliga monopolisers Bayern supplied Germany with seven (more than 30% of the squad) players for the 2014 World Cup, which they won in Brazil.
Just five Bayern boys have made it into Joachim Low’s provisional 27-man squad this time around, but, with the likes of Manuel Neuer, Thomas Muller and Mario Gotze – who scored the winning goal in the World Cup final – among them, Germany are still heavily powered by the Bavarian club.
OK. So Spain sadly cannot call upon Luis Suarez, Lionel Messi or Neymar, but they can still raid Barcelona for plenty of talent. And that they have.
A fifth of Spain’s 25-man provisional squad will come from the Nou Camp, in the form of Jordi Alba, Gerard Pique, Marc Bartra, Sergio Busquets and Andres Iniesta.
Although Diego Costa has been left out, the Blues have still got three players in the Spain squad.
Pedro and Cesc Fabregas have 30 international goals between them and, even if they don’t score the vital goals, one of them is likely to create them.
Meanwhile, don’t underestimate Cesar Azpilicueta, who has been one of the few senior figures at Chelsea who has not had a truly awful season.