If we think about (statistically) exceptional euro performances, we think about Platini84 and Van Basten88. But both were shaped by peculiar circumstances. I'll take nothing away from Platini, he is a favourite of mine, but they were helped by a few conditions: Belgium was severely handicapped by the suspensions of Eric Gerets and libero Walter Meeuws. Franky Vercauteren had problems with his knee, Luc Millecamps was injured, striker Vandenbergh was not fit. Denmark had their problems too. Soren Busk, Jesper Olsen, Frank Arnesen and Morten Olsen played with injections. Especially Arnesen and Olsen were big worries throughout the tournament. Alan Simonsen broke his leg in the first match. The goalkeeper was a worry too. Denmark conceded six goals in a friendly with Holland. Main culprit was the goalkeeper. Troels Rasmussen was injured and they not really and adequate replacement. Spain had problems with Gordillo, Maceda (suspended) and Goikoetxea. Their whole axis was gone. Also the sensational left-back Moreno was not fit and did not complete the final and was absent in some other matches too (against Germany for example). The point is: three of the five opponents of France had some serious problems. This is the kind of luck a player needs. I do not mean it as Platini-bashing but it these kind of circumstances obviously help. Van Basten in 1988 is a different story. He was helped by a tremendous support cast. The second best player in the tournament was Frank Rijkaard, who was just as him fresh (Rijkaard played rarely a match in 87-88). Both Rijkaard and Van Basten had not a tiring season behind their back. Plus, Koeman and Gullit ran their socks off to help Van Basten. Koeman and Gullit were stars for their clubs as well but Gullit was after a stunning first season tired and Koeman had a fractured foot and was not fit. So, both found the mental energy to utilise their services as 'water carriers' - because both knew they themselves could not become the star of the tournament. Yes, they had the abilities to be valuable, no, they could not be great and/or outstanding. The point is: Gomez (or any other striker) needs such kind of willingness too perhaps. It takes a unselfish Ozil to star. Usually, sides like Spain, Germany, Holland, France etc. possess many more 'stars' who all want to eat a bit of the pie and coaches are - rightly so - tempted to use those attributes. It doesn't happen very often that star-players play an subordinate role, with the intention to let another star player shine, and that is the luck that Van Basten had - and repaid their confidence obviously. In sum: favourable circumstances might be key.