Euro 2024 Power Ranking: England on the rise as sorry Italy sink to bottom…

The Euro 2024 last 16 has seen great goals, incredible comebacks and penalty drama as the stakes continue to get higher as the tournament progresses.

While Germany and Spain looked impressive, England were minutes away from a humiliating defeat to Slovakia and Portugal were taken to penalties by Slovenia – but all four have progressed.

We’ve ranked the teams that made the knockout rounds from best to worst, as England somehow rise and the Euro 2020 winners sink to the bottom of the list.

Note: If you want to point and laugh at us, you can also read our ranking after the first, second and third round of group stage matches.

16. Italy⬇️

The defending champions were embarrassingly feeble in their 2-0 defeat to Switzerland, second in every department to their Alpine neighbours.

Don’t be fooled by the fact Italy hit the post twice in the second half – they could still be playing now and wouldn’t have scored.

Luciano Spaletti came into the tournament with a good reputation but was unable to make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. It’s now clear to see why the Italians have missed the last two World Cups.

15. Belgium⬇️

In a game that lived down to expectations, Belgium barely laid a glove on France and succumbed to a late Jan Vertonghen own goal.

Kevin De Bruyne, pink and furious, played in an ineffectual deep midfield role and the Belgians were unable to exploit the directness of Jeremy Doku and Lois Openda.

Two goals scored in four matches tells the story of Belgium’s tournament; disjointed, underwhelming and boring.

14. Romania⬇️

Romania were simply overrun by the Netherlands in Munich and were arguably lucky to get away with just a 3-0 defeat.

But this has been a positive tournament for Romanian football; a first knockout match since Euro 2000, plenty of defensive grit and skill on show and a legion of colourful fans who have lit up the tournament.

Their relative success at under-21 level means they should be back for the 2028 finals.

13. Slovakia⬆️

Leading England 1-0 in injury time, Slovakia were minutes away from the greatest result of their football history.

Instead, their decision to sit back against a horribly disjointed opposition came back to bite them when Jude Bellingham scored a goal so filthy it’d be considered illegal in several American states.

They did create some chances in extra time, but Slovakia will be kicking themselves for surrendering the initiative when they didn’t really have to.

12. Georgia⬇️

Ignore the final scoreline – any team can get a 4-1 tonking from Spain on their day.

Instead, let’s revel in everything Georgia have bought to Euro 2024; fearless counter-attacking, wonderful technique and fans that sound exactly like the old shrieking woman at Highbury.

Giorgi Mamardashvili has emerged as arguably the best goalkeeper of the tournament and Khvicha Kvaratskhelia justified his reputation with some superb performances.

We surely weren’t the only ones off our feet when they took the lead against Spain – and we’re now desperate for Georgia to qualify for the 2026 World Cup.

11. Slovenia⬆️

Slovenia is a nation of two million people and has a multitude of top-level skiers, cyclists, gymnasts and athletes alongside top basketball, volleyball and handball teams. Football is not a national obsession.

Yet the national team bowed out of Euro 2024 without losing a game after taking Portugal to penalties in a goalless thriller in Frankfurt.

Jan Oblak’s penalty save from Cristiano Ronaldo will be remembered for years to come. Unfortunately, Benjamin Sesko will remember his extra-time miss with similar clarity.

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10. Denmark⬆️

Denmark acquitted themselves well against Germany, providing tough opposition for the hosts until the pendulum turned on two highly questionable decisions.

Their defeat seemed pre-ordained once Kai Havertz scored from the penalty spot, with Jamal Musiala killing the game with a well-taken goal.

While the Danes weren’t embarrassed, they failed to win a game at Euro 2024 and their spine looks in desperate need of renewal.

9. Austria⬇️

Every tournament has a side that illuminate the group stages before falling in the first knockout round and Austria filled the role at Euro 2024.

Their Red Bull pressing tactics met its match against a Turkey side who were equal parts frantic and disciplined, making for a stunning match in Leipzig that the Turks won 2-1.

Austria more than played their part in proceedings, almost completing a comeback from 2-0 when Christoph Baumgartner’s header was kept out by the save of the tournament from Mert Gunok.

We hope Ralf Rangnick stays on and takes this Austria side to the 2026 World Cup – all of their matches have been thrilling.

Beer shower for coach Domenico Tedesco, RasenBallsport Leipzig, during the press conference, RB Leipzig wins the DFB Cup final, 79th DFB Cup final

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8. England⬆️

Ninety-three minutes of jaw-dropping ineptitude was the prelude to Jude Bellingham providing the kind of moment that will send shivers down your spine decades from now – and an eventual 2-1 win over Slovakia.

We’re convinced Gareth Southgate is refusing to make changes to his starting XI out of spite, but it’s hard to make a case for Kieran Trippier and Phil Foden remaining in the side for the Switzerland quarter-final.

The Swiss look the more cohesive and effective outfit right now – but England have players who can produce heroics from nothing like Bellingham.

Let’s face it – if the nature of this win doesn’t light the fire under England, nothing will.

7. Portugal⬇️

Portugal got past Slovenia, as expected. What wasn’t expected was the sheer angst and emotional energy they’d need to expend to do so.

Faced with stubborn opponents, Portugal huffed and puffed as the game gradually turned into the Cristiano Ronaldo show.

His emotional incontinence after his extra-time penalty miss has to be balanced out by his unerring strike in the shoot-out. But it’s also clear he is holding Portugal back from their full potential.

Their match against France on Friday would’ve looked a humdinger before the tournament. It’s unclear whether that is still the case now.

6. France⬇️

In a dull last-16 match in Dusseldorf, France did what they tend to do under Didier Deschamps – just enough.

The 1-0 win over Belgium was an instantly forgettable affair, with Randal Kolo Muani’s heavily deflected shot deciding the game.

France are through to the quarters with two own goals and a penalty in four matches. But you still can’t shake the feeling this is all part of the Deschamps master plan that has served France so well.

5. Turkey⬆️

Firstly, the save. Gunok’s flying leap to keep out Baumgartner’s header gave us goosebumps and will feature on Euros montages for ever more.

Secondly, Arda Guler. That boy will be a mainstay of Real Madrid’s midfield for years to come.

Thirdly, their fans. We’ve rarely heard a roar like the one that greeted the final whistle of Turkey’s latest Match of the Tournament contender, a thrilling 2-1 win over Austria.

Having looked open in their group matches, Turkey produced a display of determination and no little skill to beat the Austrians to deservedly go through.

Their match against the Netherlands looks like appointment viewing.

4. Netherlands⬆️

Much better from the Netherlands, who stepped up a few gears to comfortably see off Romania and book their passage to a first Euros quarter-final since 2008.

Cody Gakpo’s screamer put them a goal up, before a litany of missed chances threatened the ultimate bottle job from Ronald Koeman’s men – until Donyell Malen’s double eased their nerves.

This was a much more cohesive and forward-thinking performance from the Dutch that sets up a mouth-watering quarter-final with Turkey in Berlin.

3. Switzerland⬆️

The opposition weren’t up to much, but Switzerland produced one of the most accomplished performances in their history to beat Italy 2-0 in Berlin.

Remo Freuler and Ruben Vargas scored the goals, but Manuel Akanji was the star performer in defence and encapsulated the composure and talent of this Swiss team. England have been warned.

You don't remember this guy's loan spell at Chelsea? Shame on you.

READ: 7 forgotten ex-Premier League footballers who are playing at Euro 2024

2. Germany🟰

Germany looked like blowing Denmark away early on, until the elements and canny opponents threatened to derail the hosts bid to win the European Championship on home soil.

Havertz and Musiala eventually scored the goals to send the Germans through, with players queuing up to score a third in a rampant end to the match.

But vulnerabilities that better teams could exploit remain in plain sight – it should make the quarter-final against Spain a fascinating watch.

1. Spain🟰

Asked to come from behind for the first time in the tournament, Spain set about dismantling Georgia like a top surgeon performing a routine operation.

Rodri levelled the scores before half-time, while Fabian Ruiz, Nico ­Williams and Dani Olmo added the goals to seal a quarter-final against the hosts.

Williams and Lamine Yamal were livewires once again, as Spain demonstrated the quality, control and speed that has marked them out as Euro 2024’s best side to date.