Euro 2024: All you need to knows about the blockbuster quarter-finals

FILE - Teen sensation Lamine Yamal has been a star for Barcelona and Spain. Photo: David Aliaga/NurPhoto via AFP

FILE - Teen sensation Lamine Yamal has been a star for Barcelona and Spain. Photo: David Aliaga/NurPhoto via AFP

Published Jul 3, 2024


After some pulsating matches in the round of 16, the cream has seemingly risen to the top ahead of this weekend’s Euro 2024 quarter-finals.

IOL Sport’s John Goliath takes a look at the four mouth-watering quarter-finals and the players who may hold the key to safe passage to the semis.

GERMANY VS SPAIN (Friday, 6pm)


Other than a stoppage-time draw against the impressive Switzerland, the free-scoring Germany breezed through the group stages and their quarter-final against Denmark.

With home support in the stands, the Germans have scored 10 goals in their four matches. At the back they have been just as good, conceding just the one against the Swiss.

Biggest threat: Jamal Musiala

The Bayern Munich attacking midfielder is Germany and the tournament’s top goal-scorer. He pops up in great positions has scored in the last 16 match against Denmark.


Spain managed to qualify from a really difficult group, seeing off Croatia (3-0), Italy (1-0) and Albania (1-0) before producing their best performance of the tournament with a 4-1 win over Georgia.

Their wingers definitely are their biggest strength going forward with Nico Williams and 16-year-old starlet Lamine Yama getting to the byline to cross or cutting inside to have shot.

Biggest threat: Lamine Yama

The teenager has terrorised defences down the right flank with his speed and guile. He is a tricky customer to defend against and it could be a long night for German left back David Raum.



After cruising through the group stages, Portugal snuck into the last quarter-finals with a penalty shoot-out win over Slovenia.

Their defence has been key in the tournament, conceding just one goal so far. But they need their big players such as Cristiano Ronaldo to step and take their chances if they want to beat France.

Key threat: Bruno Fernandes

Portugal need their Manchester United star to come to the party and create goals for the likes of Ronaldo. He must take a more progressive role in the team,


France haven’t quite set the world alight, with their stingy defence and the ace midfield ball-winner N’Golo Kante bailing them out on more than one occasion in the tournament.

But they certainly possess the fire power to cause Spain problems, especially on the counter-attack with the masked avenger Kylian Mbappe looking to pounce.

Key threat: Randal Kolo Muhani

Don’t be surprised is Muhani starts against Portugal after his bright cameo in the second half against Belgium where he had a hand their winner. His movement upfront is something the French badly need.



Gareth Southgate’s men has been uninspiring, especially going forward. Their passing has been cumbersome and their movement off the ball slow. It also seems like not having a left-footed fullback is harming the team.

However, they have match-winners all over the park. If their midfield can create more chances, they can score goals. If they click, they could be really dangerous.

Key threat: Harry Kane

England need their captain lead from the front and take his chances. England aren’t creating a lot, so he may have to produce another moment of magic.


The Swiss reached the quarter-finals for the second time in their history with a clinical performance against Italy in the last 16.

The Swiss press with a lot of energy, which is something that could be trouble for the hesitant England. But they are also a team that unlocks defences and find space in-behind the opposition teams.

Key threat: Granit Xhaka

The former Arsenal man is a key player in the side, calling the shots in the middle of the park. He is on of their key passers, feeding his front players, but also the man who organises the team without the ball.



The Dutch produced their best performance of the tournament in the last 16, battering Romania with one of the best attacking displays of the tournament. They had 23 shot at goal, with Donyell Malen coming off the bench to score a brace.

The Dutch also have a solid and experienced back four and speed and creativity going forward. Their midfield is seen as their weakness and possibly something the Turks can exploit.

Key threat: Cody Gakpo

The Liverpool man scored a cracking goal against Romania, cutting in from the left to fire home. The Dutch will need more of this to make it to the semi-finals.


Captain Hakan Calhanoglu will return for the quarter-final match after missing the Austria game due to suspension. The Inter Milan man will bring more bite to a midfield who had been really solid throughout the tournament.

Turkiye have a mass massive aerial threat in the opposition box, with Al-Ahli defender Merih Demiral scoring from a corner against Austria following his bullet in the first half.

Key threat: Arda Guler

The 19-year-old Real Madrid forward become just the third teenager after Cristiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney to score and assist a goal at a European Championship. His accurate corners have become a weapon for the Tuks.