A certain Cristiano Ronaldo lit up the playoffs and sent Portugal to the finals with a memorable hat trick performance against Sweden. Some may call Portugal a one-man team, but if that man is CR7, should they even care?
In the 8 months between now and the start of the tournament on June 12, fans of the qualified countries will veer between giddy optimism and morose despair about their teams’ prospects – depending on things like player injuries (which hopefully will be few and far between) and friendly results.
Obviously, it’s too early to say who’s a favorite or who will win (the Group Stage draw takes place December 6). At this point, though, it’s time to just enjoy the fact that your team’s qualified (or lament that it did not). It’s also key to remember that a lot can happen between now and June 12.