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EURO 2020 inside track: Poland

UEFA.com's Poland reporter Piotr Koźmiński hopes Robert Lewandowski's goals and a new playing style can boost their chances.

Meet the teams: Poland
Meet the teams: Poland

Group E fixtures

14/06: Poland 1-2 Slovakia (Saint Petersburg)
19/06: Spain vs Poland (Seville)
23/06: Sweden vs Poland (Saint Petersburg)

Team profile

Every goal on Poland's road to EURO 2020
Every goal on Poland's road to EURO 2020

Coach: Paulo Sousa
Captain: Robert Lewandowski
Nickname: Biało-Czerwoni (The White and Reds)
How they qualified: Group G winners (W8 D1 D1 F18 A5)
EURO best: quarter-finals (2016)

Where they could play their knockout games

Round of 16: Budapest, Seville, Copenhagen, Glasgow
Quarter-final: Saint Petersburg, Munich, Rome, Baku
Semi-final: London
Final: London

Final 25-man squad

Goalkeepers: Łukasz Fabiański (West Ham), Łukasz Skorupski (Bologna), Wojciech Szczęsny (Juventus)

Defenders: Jan Bednarek (Southampton), Bartosz Bereszyński (Sampdoria), Kamil Glik (Benevento), Michał Helik (Barnsley), Tomasz Kędziora (Dynamo Kyiv), Kamil Piątkowski (Raków Częstochowa), Tymoteusz Puchacz (Lech Poznań), Maciej Rybus (Lokomotiv Moskva)

Midfielders: Paweł Dawidowicz (Verona), Przemysław Frankowski (Chicago Fire), Kamil Jóźwiak (Derby), Mateusz Klich (Leeds), Kacper Kozłowski (Pogoń Szczecin), Grzegorz Krychowiak (Lokomotiv Moskva), Karol Linetty (Torino), Jakub Moder (Brighton), Przemysław Płacheta (Norwich), Piotr Zieliński (Napoli)

Forwards: Dawid Kownacki (Fortuna Düsseldorf), Robert Lewandowski (Bayern), Karol Świderski (PAOK), Jakub Świerczok (Piast Gliwice)

Poland national anthem: Watch Lewandowski and co at EURO 2012
Poland national anthem: Watch Lewandowski and co at EURO 2012

UEFA.com Poland team reporter: Piotr Koźmiński

This is my fifth EURO – my first was in Portugal in 2004, when I witnessed possibly the biggest surprise in the tournament's history as Greece lifted the trophy. I also remember 2008 quite well, especially the game between Poland and Germany. Lukas Podolski, who was born in Poland and whom I've know very well personally since he was 18, scored twice for Germany in that game. In 2012, I spent the EURO at home and Poland failed to qualify from their group. Nevertheless, the 1-1 draw against Russia in Warsaw was a fantastic experience as I've never felt an atmosphere like it during a national-team game. I also have cherished memories from the last EURO in France, when Poland reached the quarter-finals.

How they play

Paulo Sousa has decided to change how Poland play, moving away from a counterattacking style. The Portuguese coach has placed a bigger emphasis on higher pressing and more control through possession, while his team uses a hybrid of two systems: 4-4-2 without the ball and variations of 3-4-3 with it.

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Key player: Robert Lewandowski

Considered by many as the best striker in the world at the moment, Lewandowski is the all-time leading scorer for the national team (66 goals) and also their most-capped player (119). He scored a goal in each of his previous EUROs (2012 and 2016), but definitely has the appetite for more this time.

Coach: Paulo Sousa

A great Portuguese player, who won the UEFA Champions League with Juventus and Borussia Dortmund. Sousa took part in two EURO finals as a player with Portugal (1996 and 2000) while as a coach he has vast experience in various countries, including England, Italy, Israel, Switzerland and Hungary.

Watch penalty that sent Poland into the EURO 2016 last eight
Watch penalty that sent Poland into the EURO 2016 last eight

One to watch: Piotr Zieliński

The Napoli midfielder is at his peak. He comes here off the back of a very good season in Serie A and expectations of him in the national team are really high. For some years he has been considered as the Poland player next likely to explode on the international scene. Encouragingly, he scored in their final friendly against Iceland – a good sign?

Can they win?

Poland are not among the favourites for the tournament, despite having Lewandowski. Many believe that repeating their best EURO result – a quarter-final appearance in 2016 – would be another very good outcome. To be frank, there are other national teams who have a much stronger chance of lifting the trophy. Unless 2004 happens again…