Chelsea will have the joint-largest contingent at the Euros. While much of that contingent comes as trios or pairs, there are still plenty of players that will be alone in their representation of Chelsea. Who got invited and what will the tournament look like for them?
In group A, Ethan Ampadu will be using Wales for what he traditionally has been using it for: a chance to prove himself. Up until this season, Ampadu was playing more for Wales than his club team. That’s some level of proof to his ability, but at the same time the clubs that see him every day didn’t reach the same conclusion. A group of Turkey, Italy, and Switzerland is doable enough and Ampadu can use the platform for a good loan (or a chance at Chelsea?) next season.
Andreas Christensen won’t be sweating group B too much. After his revaluation of a second half of the season, the Dane will surely be a continued key figure for Denmark. Finland and Russia shouldn’t pose too many issues. Belgium is going to be their roughest match, but in his current form, Christensen shouldn’t worry very much.
Speaking of Belgium, Michy Batshuayi will be with the team, as well. The Blues used to have a large Belgian contingent, but time has whittled it down to just the striker. He might play off the bench but that is likely the most he’ll see. Unfortunately, that has been a bit of the story of his career. Still, good sub performances might get him the move he needs this summer to a club he can feel wanted at.
Group D is the Chelsea heavy group. England will be the main attraction, but Croatia with Mateo Kovacic will be hoping for a deep run like at the last World Cup. Kovacic fell off during the end of the season (in part because of his injury) but he should be a pretty central figure for any success Croatia might have.
One to keep an eye on is surely Billy Gilmour. After being convinced to stay at Chelsea with the promise that he’d get the minutes to make the Euros, he somehow did make the team despite a lack of minutes. Scotland doesn’t have a ton going for them overall, so it’s not unlikely that the now Champions League winner gets a start or two to add some spark to the Scots.
Last but certainly not least is current Captain, Leader, Legend Cesar Azpilicueta. He’s an extremely surprising inclusion after years of not playing for the team. Perhaps he was never Barcelona or Real Madrid enough for the politics of the national team. Regardless, Luis Enrique has bucked many of the previous trends and bringing Azpilicueta is just one of the ways. Azpilicueta probably won’t play much if at all, but he will be an extremely powerful voice behind the scenes.
That wraps up our Euros “2020” (seriously, they couldn’t just rename it?) preview. 15 Chelsea players are off to represent their nations and Chelsea in a packed summer. It’s more likely than not that a Blue brings back another medal. The question is, who?