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5 standout players to make sure you watch at Euro 2016

Europe’s finest go head to head in France this summer, starting on June 10.

Irish focus so far has naturally been on Martin O’Neill’s man, but there are plenty of footballers from other nations who will capture viewers’ interest when it all kicks off.

Here, we pick out 5 players to watch at Euro 2016.

1. Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal)

Other than convince the footballing world he is better than Lionel Messi, there is little Ronaldo has not achieved on an individual basis. The Real Madrid forward has been named Fifa’s World Player of the Year three times and his five goals in qualifying made him the leading scorer in European Championship history.

2. Gareth Bale (Wales)

Almost single-handedly guided Wales into their first major tournament in more than 50 years. Bale, the world’s most expensive player, scored seven of Wales’ 11 goals in qualifying and also claimed two assists.

3. Paul Pogba (France)

Manchester United fans still wake up in a cold sweat thinking about how Pogba was allowed to leave Old Trafford in 2012 and join Juventus. Since then the 23-year-old has developed into a colossus and one of the most wanted midfielders in the world.

4. Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Sweden)

The only player in the tournament able to match Ronaldo for ego and self-confidence. The striker is 34 now but there appears to be no sign of his outrageous talent diminishing. Ibrahimovic scored 11 goals in qualifying and averages better than a goal every two games in international football, having scored three in their play-off victory against Denmark.

5. Robert Lewandowski (Poland)

Lewandowski is a classic number nine who has the ability to change the game in an instant with unerring finishing and a complete all-round game. Made his name at Borussia Dortmund under Jurgen Klopp and has not looked back since joining Bayern Munich.

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