All you need to know about Group E contenders Spain, Sweden, Poland and Slovakia.
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Spain (see fixtures here)
v Sweden W7 D5 L3 F25 A16
v Poland W8 D1 L1 F27 A8
v Slovakia W4 D1 L1 F15 A6
Qualifying record: P10 W8 D2 L0 F31 A5
Qualifying top scorer: Álvaro Morata, Sergio Ramos, Rodrigo (4)
UEFA EURO best: winners (1964, 2008, 2012)
UEFA EURO 2016: round of 16, lost 2-0 to Italy
Coach: Luis Enrique
Luis Enrique stepped down in June 2019 for personal reasons but returned to his post five months later after qualifying had concluded. He previously guided Barcelona to UEFA Champions League glory in 2015.
Draw reaction: "[Poland] came first in their qualifying group and we all know about [Robert] Lewandowski and the performances they can give. I think we’re among a group of eight to ten favourites to win it but, unfortunately, in the last couple of tournaments – the [FIFA] World Cup and [UEFA] EURO – we have fallen far short of being able to win the title. We’re going to try to change that and try to get back to that level."
Key player: Sergio Ramos
The glue that holds the defence together, Spain's most-capped player also features among their top ten goalscorers, partly after pulling rank on penalty duty.
One to watch: Ansu Fati
The Barcelona forward broke a 95-year-old record when he became Spain's youngest scorer, netting in September’s 4-0 UEFA Nations League victory over Ukraine aged 17 years and 311 days.
Did you know?
Spain are the only team to have successfully defended the EURO title, in 2012.
Sweden (see fixtures here)
v Spain W3 D5 L7 F16 A25
v Poland W14 D4 L8 F56 A37
v Slovakia W2 D3 L0 F5 A2
Qualifying record: P10 W6 D3 L1 F23 A9
Qualifying top scorer: Robin Quaison (5)
UEFA EURO best: semi-finals (1992)
UEFA EURO 2016: group stage
Coach: Janne Andersson
The brains behind Sweden's recent renaissance, Andersson took charge in 2016, steering his side to a first World Cup in 12 years, then topping a UEFA Nations League group including Russia and Turkey.
Draw reaction: "It is neither a nightmare nor a dream. We’ve got some healthy competition. We aim to progress, that goal hasn’t changed. Spain are definitely one of the toughest teams you can get. But at the same time, we met them twice [in 2019] and felt we were close to turning them over at home [1-1]. So it is a matter of preparing in the best way possible. Then we’ll see."
Key player: Robin Olsen
The on-loan Everton custodian's reach, physique and safe hands have time and again proven invaluable for Sweden.
One to watch: Alexander Isak
AIK's youngest ever goalscorer at 16, the national team's at 17, Isak is now 21 and plying his trade at Real Sociedad. The towering striker remains mature beyond his years.
Did you know?
At EURO '92, hosts Sweden won a group ahead of England, France and eventual victors Denmark before being edged out 3-2 by Germany in the semis.
Poland (see fixtures here)
v Spain W1 D1 L8 F8 A27
v Sweden W8 D4 L14 F37 A56
v Slovakia W3 D1 L4 F13 A12
Qualifying record: P10 W8 D1 L1 F18 A5
Qualifying top scorer: Robert Lewandowski (6)
UEFA EURO best: quarter-finals (2016)
UEFA EURO 2016: quarter-finals, lost to Portugal on penalties
Coach: Paulo Sousa
Jerzy Brzęczek steered Poland through qualifying but was replaced in January 2021 by Paulo Sousa, who starred for Portugal as a midfielder at EURO ’96 and UEFA EURO 2000. A varied coaching career has taken Sousa, now 50, to England, Hungary, Israel, Switzerland, Italy, China and France.
Key player: Robert Lewandowski
Poland's most-capped player and all-time leading scorer, the Bayern ace remains one of the game's most lethal predators.
One to watch: Krzysztof Piątek
Currently at Hertha after brief but eye-catching spells with Genoa and AC Milan, Piątek has kicked off his burgeoning Poland career with a goal roughly every two matches.
Did you know?
Jakub Błaszczykowski is Poland's all-time EURO top scorer with three goals; Lewandowski needs one more to catch him.
Slovakia (see fixtures here)
v Spain W1 D1 L4 F6 A15
v Sweden W0 D3 L2 F2 A5
v Poland W4 D1 L3 F12 A13
Qualifying record: P8 W4 D1 L3 F13 A11
Play-offs: Republic of Ireland (h) 0-0, 4-2 pens; Northern Ireland (a) 2-1 aet
Qualifying top scorers: Róbert Boženík, Marek Hamšík, Juraj Kucka (3)
UEFA EURO best: round of 16 (2016)
UEFA EURO 2016: round of 16, lost 3-0 to Germany
Coach: Štefan Tarkovič
The assistant assumed temporary control for a second time in October when Pavel Hapal departed the helm after the play-off semi-final, but landed the job on a long-term basis in December 2020. He had been on Ján Kozák’s coaching staff during EURO 2016.
Key player: Marek Hamšík
Slovakia’s most-capped player and all-time leading marksman, the 33-year-old captain remains the heart of the national team. Now in China at Dalian Professional, Hamšík dictates play from midfield with enduring energy and stamina. Hard to imagine a successful Slovakia side without him.
One to watch: Tomáš Suslov
“I told my father I would play with Marek Hamšík one day,” said winger Suslov, and the 18-year-old may soon be proved right. Picked up from the Tatran Prešov academy, Groningen’s left-winger shows immense promise.
Did you know?
Eight of the Czechoslovakia XI that won the 1976 final were from Slovakia.