The home nations squads are amongst the youngest taking part at Euro 2020

·3-min read

The British nations at Euro 2020 are relying on youth this summer, with some of the least experienced squads at the tournament.

Only Turkey have a younger group than England and Wales, who both have an average age of 25, while Scotland have the fewest international caps of any of the 24 nations.

Belgium’s ‘golden generation’, by contrast, may be approaching their last chance for glory – the Red Devils have the second-oldest squad and by far the most caps.

Here, the PA news agency analyses the experience level of the squads in action.

Average age

Euro 2020 - youngest and oldest squads
England and Wales are among the youngest squads at Euro 2020 (PA graphic)

Turkey’s final cut-down to 26 players left them with the lowest average age, 13 days short of 25 years old and surpassing England as the youngest.

England’s players will be on average 25 years, three months and nine days old on the tournament’s opening day – a figure that will change slightly once the injured Trent Alexander-Arnold’s replacement is announced – with Wales just three months older at 25 years, six months and 26 days after teenager Ruben Colwill and 20-year-olds Neco Williams, Ethan Ampadu and Dylan Levitt made the cut.

Seventeen-year-old Jude Bellingham is a big factor in England’s average as the second-youngest player in the tournament – Poland midfielder Kacper Kozlowski is four months younger.

England could at one stage have had another of the tournament’s youngest players in their line-up, with Bayern Munich’s Jamal Musiala ultimately opting to represent Germany, while Barcelona and Spain forward Pedri is the fourth-youngest player and helps make Spain’s 24-man squad the fifth-youngest at the tournament, around six weeks older on average than Ukraine.

Jamal Musiala, right, scores in an England Under-21 game against Albania
Jamal Musiala played for England at under-21 level before opting to represent Germany (Mike Egerton/PA)

At the other end of the scale, Sweden and Belgium are the only squads with an average age over 29 with the Scandinavians eight days older at 29 years, two months and four days.

Slovakia, Finland and Hungary are the other squads with an average age over 28, hoping experience counts in their favour.

With Belgium and Finland both in Group B, where Russia and Denmark’s average ages are not far short of 28 years, that group is the oldest with an average of 28 years, two months and 21 days – Group A, featuring Turkey and Wales along with a youthful Switzerland squad and Italy, is the youngest at 26 years and four months.

International experience

Euro 2020: Most and least-capped squads
Scotland have the fewest caps, and Belgium by far the most (PA graphic)

Belgium are out on their own in terms of caps, with an average of 50.2 per player when final squads were announced on June 1.

That is 10 more than defending champions Portugal, at 40.0, while World Cup winners France are also counting on experience with 38.6 caps per player.

Scotland are at the other end of the scale with 448 caps in total, the only squad below 500, and an average of 17.2 per player – two fewer on average than Hungary, the next least experienced squad with 19.4 caps per player.

Chelsea’s Billy Gilmour was selected as an uncapped player, before making his debut with nine minutes in the draw with Holland the next day – the midfielder will turn 20 on June 11, the day the tournament begins.

To view this content, you'll need to update your privacy settings.
Please click here to do so.

Steve Clarke’s side, though, find themselves in a group light on experience overall with the Czech Republic averaging 19.9 caps per player and England 20.4 – three of the four lowest averages.

That leaved Croatia’s average of 34.4 far and away the highest in Group D, and fifth overall behind Sweden’s veteran squad (36.2).

Wales, despite their low average age, have 27.9 caps per player – almost exactly in the middle of the pack for a nice balance of youth and experience.