UEFA Euro 2016 Kicks-off Tonight in Paris

UEFA Euro 2016 gets underway in Paris at 8pm tonight, with France taking on Romania in an exciting opening match. The football championship to decide Europe’s best soccer team is scheduled to run from June 10th to July 10th, and already the continent’s gambling operators are preparing for a huge spike in betting activity.
Being the host country, France with odds of 3/1 has been made the competition’s favorite, followed by Germany (4/1), Spain (5/1), and England (8/1). With 20% of all wagers in the UK being placed on England, however, local bookmakers will be keen for the team not to pull out any great surprises, as they are still reeling from Leicester winning this year’s Premiership at starting odds of 5,000/1.
At least the bookies can be comforted by the fact England has yet to win the Euro’s, and the only time they won the World Cup was half a century ago in 1966. Conversely, Germany and 2-times reigning champion Spain have won the UEFA Euro tournament more than any other team at 3 times a piece, followed by France (2), and six other teams with one victory each.
In the meantime, Asian gamblers are also preparing for the 4 week-long soccer extravaganza, but risk falling foul of local gambling laws as sports betting is almost completely banned throughout the Far East. In 2014, for instance, Thailand shut down more than 800 betting operations, and made nearly 1,000 arrests during the World Cup in Brazil.
As was reported by the Bangkok Post this week, the Royal Thai Police have now launched a “centre for the prevention and suppression of betting” with the Euro 2016 football tournament in mind. In addition, on Tuesday more than 150 Thai students even organized an anti-gambling campaign at Victory Monument in Bangkok to persuade their fellow citizens to enjoy the upcoming football games without having to wager money on them first.

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