Euro 2012 Upcoming Match Predictions

ihate

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Euro 2012 Predictions and Preview: Spain vs Ireland

Group Elimination C: Thursday, 14 June 2012 - Gdansk - PGE Arena

The “Red Fury” meets the “Boys in Green” on June 14 at the PGE Arena in Gdansk


Spain


After the 1-1 draw with Italy last Sunday, reigning champions Spain needs a knockout. Nevertheless, Spain is the overwhelming favourite. Both Euro 2008 and 2010 World Cup champions, the “Red Fury” has proven to be an adversary that’s not to be dealt lightly with. Plus, with a group of hardened veterans, it’s hard to beat a team with experience on their shoulders.

But there is a downside to the fact that their players have played more matches than any other players or teams in the world, the risk of fatigue is a problem and age is another which already sapped the Spaniards of some of their best players.

Ireland


There’s really not much to say about the “Boys in Green” except for the fact that coach Giovanni Trapattoni has a huge task at hand to revive the team after being annihilated early on by the Croatians. But the Irish has proven to be a team full of resilience in the past and who is to say that these boys don’t stand a chance.

The Irish defence needs a lot of improvement. The attack lacks force as well with Kevin Doyle and Aiden McGeady being close to invisible during their crushing game with the Croatians. Trapattoni needs to revitalise the nearly crushed Irish squad as soon as possible as their biggest Euro 2012
challenge is near.


Prediction: Spain wins 3-0


Spaniards are likely to have a better day considering their desperation to turn around their fortunes and successfully defend their crown. Ireland’s trouble defence and weak attack has already been exploited so the “Red Fury” is sure to have a better day in Gdansk on June 12.

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Euro 2012 Predictions and Preview: Ukraine vs France

Group Elimination D: Friday, 15 June 2012 - Donetsk - Donbass Arena

On June 15 “Les Bleus” meet with the “Yellow-Blues” in their Home Turf at the Donbass Arena in Donetsk.

Ukraine


After defeating Sweden on June 11 by overturning a one goal deficit, the Ukrainian team will be going up against the French on home turf. Playing at home is a big advantage for a sports team regardless of how diverse the spectators can be. This is one strongpoint that the Ukrainians hold. Team captain Andriy Shevchenko seems ready for another battle after a fantastic victory against Sweden where he scored the two goals sealing a 2-1 win.
Although according to fans within the site, Ukraine looks to be the favourite, France is still FIFA World no.14 against Ukraine at a mere no.52 and elsewhere is considered the favourite regardless of a less than explosive performance against England during the Group D opener. Plus the track
record says a lot as well.

France


The French remain unbeaten in 21 matches during the climb up to the European championships up to the game against England which ended in a draw. Not bad despite the lacklustre performance over the English team whoare considered already washed up. Equipped with the dangerous and brilliant Franck Ribery and Samir Nasri on the wings the “Bleus” look to deploy 4-5-1 formation once again.
France however needs an upgrade in their gameplay. Although their attack is impeccable, the Ukrainians proved many people wrong with their performance against Sweden. The days of Zidane are long gone so a step up is in place.

Predictions: France wins 1-0


Let’s take a look at the numbers: France, world ranked number 14; Ukraine, world ranked number 52. The French also have a straight 21 wins up to the Euros. There’s really no argument in this but upsets can happen so we’ll just have to see on the 15th.


For any comments and predictions pls reply and i will love to response to your thoughts.....
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craig9045

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Well im glad to see your predictions, i put my pound bets down this morning for tonights games. I put a 3-0 to spain so hopefully your right there! And a 2-1 France, i just fancy Shevchenko to cause some problems, but not enough to win the game like in the sweden match.

Although football is unpredictable, and i always find that with the hosts or co-hosts... anything is possible.
 

ihate

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Well im glad to see your predictions, i put my pound bets down this morning for tonights games. I put a 3-0 to spain so hopefully your right there! And a 2-1 France, i just fancy Shevchenko to cause some problems, but not enough to win the game like in the sweden match.

Although football is unpredictable, and i always find that with the hosts or co-hosts... anything is possible.
Thank you for reading sir..yes anything is posible...who knows if france gonna win...
lets find out who'sgonna win..
 

ihate

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Euro 2012 Predictions and Preview: Greece vs Russia

Group Elimination A: Saturday, 16 June 2012 - Warsaw - National Stadium
It’s the Ruskies and the Greeks’ time to face off on June 16 at the Warsaw National Stadium.


Russia


Overwhelming favourites by a long shot, Russia is currently on a 12 game unbeaten streak including a 1-1 draw against Poland. They annihilated the Czech Republic during their opener with a 4-1 victory. Russia has a much better squad than all three teams within Group A and the line-up includes well-known defenders Yuri Zhirkov and AlekseiBerezutski.

Much criticism goes largely to Russia’s manager, former Dutch player **** Advocaat who has put far too much time in developing the team’s defensive side instead of cultivating the strong goal-scoring line-up. The choice of formation and positioning will have a huge effect on the Russians’ performance as the tournament progresses. So far, not bad but a 1-1 draw with Poland proved that the team missed out on several opportunities that could have led to a swift victory.

Greece


A 1-1 draw with Poland and a 1-2 lost to the Czechs has put the Greeks in a very tight spot. Now on the 16th of June they will be facing the strongest team in Group A, the Russians. Best remembered for their outstanding performance during Euro 2004, Greece has been a fixture in recent major tournaments since then but with varying degrees of success. The Greeks did well in the qualifying stages of Euro 2012 finishing at the top of the Group F ladder above the likes of Croatia, Isreal, Latvia, Malta, and Georgia winning 7 games and have 3 draws.

However, a low tally of goals has put Greece in the category of being a mainly defensive unit. Russia has a stronger attack than the Greeks and this can put the team in a hard situation. It’s up to keyplayersGiorgiosKaragounis, the team captain have 116 caps to
his name and Theofanis Gekas to put their experience and brilliance to work.


Predictions: Russia wins 1-0


In terms of individual qualities, Russia ranks much higher. They also excellent keepers, so does Greece, but they are one up on the attacking aspect. Greece has shown their best and their worst since the start of the qualifiers up to the Group stage, but sorry to say, the worst side is happening during the recent matches and Russia is by far, the superior team. But since Greece has an above average defence, let’s give the Russians only that much...

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Euro 2012 Predictions and Preview: Czech Republic vs Poland

Group Elimination A: Saturday, 16 June 2012 - Wroclaw - Municipal Stadium
The Czechs square off against the Poles on June 16 at the Wroclaw Municipal Stadium for Group A

Czech Republic


Coming off a 2-1 victory over Greece, the Czechs are back in the fight, this time against the Euro 2012 co-host Poland. Looking to regain their reputation as one of Europe’s more formidable squads after a series of disappointments like missing out on the 2010 World Cup and falling off Euro 2008 during the Group Stage. The Czechs did fair during the qualification stage finishing second in Group I after defending champions Spain. Fortunately, they have been placed in Group A alongside Greece, Russia, and Poland. With key players such as keeper PetrCech, the team’s most experienced player, plus striker Milan Baros with a staggering 40 goals, the Czechs can take themselves further up the ladder.

The Czechs are not a favourite within Group A and are not expected to make it far in the tournament. This is mainly due to the retirement of former stalwarts, PavelNedved and Jan Koller. The absence of captain Rosicky due to an injury may be detrimental to the team as well. Manager Michal Bilek has struggled to gain support of the fans having a large number calling for his ouster but
that part should not affect the team’s performance.


Poland


The Poles qualified for the Euros by virtue of being co-host and this is only their second time participating in such tournament. Their previous appearance came four years ago when they finished at the basement of their group. Underdog is such an understatement for this team with limited exposure. However, their performance during the friendlies have earned draws against teams within the calibre of Portugal or Germany. If key players Robert Lewandowski and JakubBlaszczykowski would combine their individual brilliance, the Poles have a shot of cruising pass the Czechs.

However, with three injuries worries concerning defender Damien Perquis, midfielder DariuszDudka and Eugen Polanski, the Polish force might have a problem.

Predictions: Poland wins 1-0


The verdict, surprising enough, still go to the Polish team. The momentum is more with the Polish side than the Czechs. The advantage of playing in home turf goes a long way. They played the better of two sides with Russia, the game ended in a draw.

Any thoughts?
 

PZW

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These are from here, aren't they? Because if they are, and it's not your work, you're meant to credit it! If it is yours, the depth and predictions are very good. I'm tipping Russia to win 3-0, and the Czech Republic to win 2-1 tonight, although maybe the 3-0 scoreline is a bit too much!

​- PZW
 

ihate

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These are from here, aren't they? Because if they are, and it's not your work, you're meant to credit it! If it is yours, the depth and predictions are very good. I'm tipping Russia to win 3-0, and the Czech Republic to win 2-1 tonight, although maybe the 3-0 scoreline is a bit too much!

​- PZW
that was according to our source sir...but i have a prediction there...
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ihate

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Euro 2012 Predictions and Preview: Denmark vs Germany

Group Elimination B: Sunday, 17 June 2012 - Lviv - New Lviv Stadium

The Danes and the Germans meet up on June 17 at the New Lviv Stadium for a final Group B match

Denmark


The Danes were looking to repeat their heroic exploits from 20 years ago but the agenda was put down by the Portuguese on the 13th. Despite their current state, the Danes stormed through the qualifications losing only to Portugal along the way. The previous match up against the Portuguese almost went to their favor with their defense keeping Ronaldo and the boys at bay. Christian Eriksen, the main focal point of the group alongside striker Nicklas Bendtner and team captain Daniel Agger, the team can pursue their intentions as long as they stay true to their formation of 4-2-3-1.

Despite the successful run through the qualifying stage and having a decent FIFA world ranking of 10, the Danes undoubtedly are the worst team within the Group B realm mainly due to the fact that they have strong opponents within the group. Another problem that they have to live with is that the vastly experience keeper Thomas Sorensen is out due to a back injury possibly compromise their defensive state.

Germany


With a perfect record by winning all 12 matches and achieving close to 40 goals en route, the Germans look untouchable at this point and will surely give the Danes a run for their money on the upcoming match this June 17. They did fairly well against Group B heavyweights the Netherlands and Portugal early on in the group stage. Mario Gomez is a formidable player and looks to drive the Germans all the way.

But defense has always been a weak point for the Germans for having let in too many goals on occasion. The Danes need to learn how to exploit this weakness then they can well overtake the German supremacy and achieve an upset.

Predictions: Germany wins 2-0


The records show a lot about the two teams and Germany’s current state is still more favorable as compared to that of the Danes. If they upgrade on their defense, which is most likely to happen, the Danish team does not stand a chance against the German offensive.

to see all predictions and and highlights...
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Euro 2012 Predictions and Preview: Portugal vs Netherlands

Group Elimination B: Sunday, 17 June 2012 - Kharkiv - Metalist Stadium
The Dutch face the Portuguese in their last group matchon June 17 at the Kharkiv Metalist Stadium
Portugal
The Portuguese get back on the Euro track after a 3-2 win against the Danes on the 13th of June. Even though a loss can take them through, the Portuguese team would have to beat the Dutch in the upcoming match-up by a large goal difference. Main striker HelderPostiga is expected to deliver such a win with wingers Nani and team Captain Cristiano Ronaldo beside him. Silvestre Varela, now a key player can add to that effect withNani, RuiPatricio, Joao Pereira, and Pepe.
Team captain Ronaldo however needs to get his head back in the right way of thinking after being the one responsible for almost blowing away the victory against Denmark. He needs to come back and defend on the wing, if he falls short in the next game, it can lead to a loss against the Netherlands.

Netherlands


The Dutch had been one of the favourites from the start coming into the tournament in fine form but unfortunately they failed to capitalise on this factor. Having two losses on their belt against Germany with a score of 1-2 and Denmark at 0-1, the Dutch are just about ready for an exit out of the tournament. Unless manager Bart Van Marwijk make some changes to the line-up and strengthen the team’s defense, they don’t have a chance against the strong Portuguese attack. Ron Vlaar should probably return to the line-up since Mathijsen failed to deliver the last time out. Van Persie should regain his form and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar shows a lot of potential but has not been given the time of day to shine.


Predictions: Draw 1-1


Based on prior performances and factors concerning both sides, the fight is equal. The Netherlands have two losses against them and the Portuguese showing a weakening attack and defense. It is hard to point which side is better as of now. One thing is for certain however, both teams, especially the Dutch, need a win.

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Euro 2012 Predictions and Preview: Croatia vs Spain

Group Elimination C: Monday, 18 June 2012 - Gdansk - PGE Arena

Spain the defending champions take on Croatia in Gdansk in a pivotal Group C game.

Both sides are two points clear of Italy, who face the Republic of Ireland in the other pool game.
The Irish have already been eliminated after two defeats.
"I think it is going to be a beautiful game for the fans and for the players," the Barcelona midfielder said.
"They will have to go all out and so will we.
"We depend on ourselves to qualify and we will try to win and be first of our group.
"However, Croatia are very good, they have a fantastic team, with great individual talent.
"I don't expect an easy game."
There are fears amongst Italian fans that the encounter could end in a 2-2 draw, a result that would see Croatia join Spain in the next round at the expense of the Azzurri.
"Absolutely not," Xavi said.
"We only know how to play attacking football so a draw would not suit us.
"We will go out determined to hold possession, to move the ball and to go forward.
"This is our style of game and the one that made us European and world champions.
"Our aim is always to go out for victory and against Croatia it will be no exception.
"We will play to get three points from the first minute until the last."
Spain, who were held to a 1-1 draw by Italy in their group opener, already displayed that attacking flair in a 4-0 triumph over Ireland on Thursday.
"We have the same hunger that we had in Euro 2008 and at the 2010 World Cup," Xavi said.
"We are among the favourites and we have the possibility to make history and win another Euro title.
"But we know that only through hard work and humility that will be possible."
Fernando Torres is set to lead Spain's attack for the second consecutive game with the Chelsea striker having scored twice against Ireland.
Rivals Croatia face Spain for the first time in a major competition and coach Slaven Bilic knows his side will have to step up their game.
The Croats beat Ireland before holding Italy to a 1-1 draw on Thursday.
"We will need to play the best game of our lives," said Bilic, whose side hope to reach the quarter-finals of the competition for the second straight time.
"We must be concentrated for 90 minutes.
"We have to work as a team and we are going to have to take our chances."
Tottenham playmaker Luka Modric will play in support of striker Mario Mandzukic, who is the joint-top scorer of the competition with three goals.
Spain will be at full strength with midfielder Sergio Busquets having recovered from a minor foot injury.

Predictions: Spain 3-0 Croatia


Still needing a win to guarantee their own progress, Spain the defending champions will be at their exquisite best, and Croatia will be praying for a miracle from Ireland to progress.

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Euro 2012 Predictions and Preview: Italy vs Ireland

Group Elimination C: Monday, 18 June 2012 - Poznan - Municipal Stadium


Italian media is obsessed with fears Spain and Croatia will play out a 2-2 draw in the other Group C game and knock out the Azzurri even if they beat the Irish in Poznan. Such is 73-year-old Trapattoni's standing in the game, though, that no one is questioning his loyalties. Ireland have been eliminated after two heavy Group C defeats and Monday's swansong in the final group match could be the last major tournament appearance for the likes of 31-year-old Robbie Keane who will not want to bow out with a whimper.

Trapattoni, who managed Italy at Euro 2004 when they suspected a never-proved fix when Denmark and Sweden drew 2-2 to eliminate them, will make sure his troops are motivated despite only having pride to play for.
"It would not be fair to the other countries in the group if I did not select my best team," said Trapattoni. "With this team, and these players, I am proud." Italy coach Cesare Prandelli is sure Ireland and Spain will be totally professional. "I know we have to believe right until the end. I don't believe in any suspect goings on," Prandelli said. "It all depends on us, we need to deserve the win, it won't be easy."
A victory would be enough for Italy to reach the quarter-finals in second place if Spain or Croatia win the other match. However, an Italy win and a draw in the Spain game makes the situation complicated because all three teams would then be level on five points and head-to-head results come into play. A 'mini-league' between the three would be the deciding factor, with Italy having drawn 1-1 with both.
A 0-0 draw between Spain and Croatia means Italy would go through with a win while a 1-1 draw would bring group goal difference into play. A scoring draw of 2-2 or higher between Spain and Croatia, though, and Italy are out whatever they do against the Irish. Prandelli is set to make changes with forward Mario Balotelli possibly being replaced by Antonio Di Natale and Alessandro Diamanti in the running for a spot in midfield or as a second striker after impressive form in training. Defender Andrea Barzagli is almost fit after a calf problem.
The Italy coach was annoyed that the players sat on their 1-0 halftime lead over Croatia last time out only for Mario Mandzukic to equalise. "It's not a matter of fitness, it's more a mental thing," Prandelli said. "This is the mentality we have to change. We are a good team, we've got to believe it a bit more."

Prediction Italy 2-0 over Ireland


Ireland winger Damien Duff may wear the captain's armband to mark his 100th cap for his country while normal skipper Keane said the squad were determined to put on a show. "The mindset is we are not going home without any points," Keane told reporters.

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Here's our Highlights last match hope you like it..


Euro Cup 2012 Highlights: Russia stunned by Greece 1-0

Greece can be proud of their national team after pulling off a stunning upset over the heavily favored Russian team.

With history repeating itself, it was a goal by one of their heroes from the Euro 2004 triumph captain Giorgos Karagounis that delivered victory to a country which is wilting under the pressures of the euro zone crisis with high unemployment and swingeing cuts.

Russia's despair was complete as a 72nd-minute goal by Petr Jiracek gave the Czech Republic - who were beaten by the Greeks in the Euro 2004 semi-finals - a 1-0 victory over co-hosts Poland to finish top of the table, sending both the Russians and the Poles home.

Polish coach Franciszek Smuda promptly announced that was the end of the road for him, while Russia's Dutch coach **** Advocaat had perhaps wisely already said he was leaving for PSV Eindhoven.

Karagounis's joy at his goal was tempered later in the game by a booking that brought an anguished reaction from the 35-year-old as it means he will miss the quarter-final.

However, he reflected afterwards how much this victory meant to the wider Greek community.

"When we left Greece, we all said in one voice 'we will give everything and we will give everything when our compatriots aren't having the best of times'," said Karagounis.

"I believe that this tonight puts a smile on their faces."

For Greece's Portuguese coach Fernando Santos this victory was inspired by Greece's rich history as a country.

"What inspires us is the history of Greece," said Santos, whose 45percent pay rise before the tournament raised eyebrows.

"This is the thing that inspires me the most because the Greek people have huge pride for their tradition and history and I think respect from everyone is well deserved.

"Everyone has to respect Greeks because of their will and determination". "Greece believed in themselves when the world didn't."

EURO 2012: Greece vs Russia Timeline

90+4' - Full-time! The final score is 1-0.
90+4' - Alan Dzagoev for Russia gets in a strike but fails to hit the target.
90+4' - Jose Holebas for Greece has been booked by Jonas Eriksson and will miss the next match due to a suspension.
90+3' - At National Stadium Warsaw Andrey Arshavin (Russia) takes a corner from the Left.
90+3' - Pavel Pogrebnyak for Russia has been booked by Jonas Eriksson and receives a first yellow card.
90' - At National Stadium Warsaw the fourth official shows that 4 minutes will be added to the Second half.
90' - Russia's Igor Denisov gets in a shot but it is blocked by a Greece defender.
90' - Russia push forward at National Stadium Warsaw and Roman Shirokov gets in a great header. The attempt is cleared by the Greece defence.
90' - Corner awarded to Russia.
87' - Greece's Kostas Katsouranis is back in action after a slight knock.
86' - Play has been resumed at National Stadium Warsaw.
86' - Play has been interrupted briefly in Warsaw to check on Kostas Katsouranis, who is grimacing with pain.
84' - Alan Dzagoev's header is off-target for Russia.
83' - Fernando Santos is making the team's Third substitution at National Stadium Warsaw with Sotiris Ninis replacing Dimitris Salpingidis.
82' - Russia's Roman Pavlyuchenko gets his shot away but it misses the target.
82' - Corner awarded to Russia.
81' - Russia make their Third substitution with Marat Izmailov replacing Aleksandr Anyukov.
75' - Russia push forward through Igor Denisov, whose finish on goal is saved.
75' - Russia have been awarded a corner by Jonas Eriksson. Andrey Arshavin steps up to take it.
74' - At National Stadium Warsaw Andrey Arshavin (Russia) takes a corner from the Right.
73' - Igor Denisov (Russia) gets in a strike but the shot is blocked by a defender.
72' - Pavel Pogrebnyak is on a sub for Denis Glushakov for Russia.
70' - Alan Dzagoev (Russia) has been booked and will miss the next match due to a suspension.
70' - Georgios Tzavellas (Greece) strikes – and hits the bar! Ohhhh so close!
69' - Yuri Zhirkov (Russia) has received a first yellow card.
68' - In Warsaw Andrey Arshavin for Russia takes a corner from the Left-hand flag.
68' - Jonas Eriksson has awarded Russia a corner. Andrey Arshavin takes the kick from the Left .
67' - Fernando Santos (Greece) is making a Second substitution, with Grigoris Makos replacing Georgios Karagounis.
64' - Jose Holebas is on a sub for Fanis Gekas for Greece.
61' - Aleksandr Anyukov (Russia) has been booked and must now be careful not to get a second yellow card.
61' - Georgios Karagounis (Greece) has been given a yellow card and will be suspended from the next match.
60' - Jonas Eriksson has awarded Greece a corner. Georgios Karagounis takes the kick from the Right .
59' - Corner awarded to Greece.
57' - Russia's Igor Denisov gets his shot away but it misses the target.
54' - Roman Pavlyuchenko of Russia gets in a strike, but is off target.
51' - Russia's Roman Shirokov misses with an attempt on goal.
51' - Greece are pushing forward but Georgios Samaras's finish is wide of the goal.
46' - Russia make their First substitution with Roman Pavlyuchenko replacing Aleksandr Kerzhakov.
46' - Jonas Eriksson has blown to start the second-half.
45+3' - The first-half is over.
45+2' - Goal! Georgios Karagounis gives Greece a 1-0 lead.
45' - The fourth official's board shows 2 minutes, which will be added to the First half.
45' - Russia have been awarded a corner by Jonas Eriksson. Andrey Arshavin steps up to take it.
45' - At National Stadium Warsaw Andrey Arshavin (Russia) takes a corner from the Right.
45' - Russia push forward at National Stadium Warsaw and Roman Shirokov gets in a strike. This is blocked, however, by a determined Greece defence.
41' - Yuri Zhirkov for Russia gets in a strike but fails to hit the target.
40' - In Warsaw Yuri Zhirkov for Russia takes a corner from the Right-hand flag.
40' - Russia push forward at National Stadium Warsaw and Denis Glushakov gets in a strike. This is blocked, however, by a determined Greece defence.
37' - Russia's Aleksandr Kerzhakov gets in a shot but it is blocked by a Greece defender.
37' - Russia are coming forward and Sergey Ignashevich gets in a strike, it misses the target, however.
31' - Russia's Denis Glushakov breaks free at National Stadium Warsaw. But the strike goes wide of the post.
25' - At National Stadium Warsaw Andrey Arshavin (Russia) takes a corner from the Left.
25' - Important block from the Greece defence as Roman Shirokov fires in a strike for Russia.
20' - In Warsaw Russia attack through Andrey Arshavin. The finish is off target, however.
19' - Alan Dzagoev for Russia drives towards goal at National Stadium Warsaw. But the finish is unsuccessful.
18' - Russia drive upfield and Yuri Zhirkov gets in a shot. The strike is blocked by a Greece defender.
17' - In Warsaw Andrey Arshavin for Russia takes a corner from the Left-hand flag.
16' - Jonas Eriksson has awarded Greece a corner. Georgios Karagounis takes the kick from the Left .
13' - Russia's Aleksandr Kerzhakov misses with an attempt on goal.
12' - Alan Dzagoev of Russia gets in a strike, but is off target.
11' - Aleksandr Anyukov has recovered and rejoins the match in Warsaw.
10' - Andrey Arshavin of Russia smashes in a shot on target. The keeper saves, though.
10' - Greece’s Fanis Gekas is on his feet again at National Stadium Warsaw.
8' - Play has been resumed.
7' - The match has been stopped briefly for attention to the injured Fanis Gekas.
7' - Aleksandr Anyukov is down and play has been interrupted for a few moments.
7' - Vasilis Torossidis (Greece) goes for goal but the shot is blocked by an alert defence.
6' - Corner awarded to Greece.
6' - In Warsaw Greece drive forward through Kostas Katsouranis. His shot is on target but it's saved.
6' - Greece have been awarded a corner by Jonas Eriksson. Georgios Karagounis steps up to take it.
3' - Dimitris Salpingidis for Greece is whistled offside.
1' - The first-half is just kicking off.
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Euro Cup 2012 Highlights: Germany Squeezes by Denmark 2-1

Germany failed to sparkle but still advanced to a quarterfinal against Greece after grinding out a 2-1 victory over Denmark on Sunday at the European Championship.

The Danes were eliminated after the two teams finished their Group B campaigns.

Lukas Podolski opened the scoring for Germany in the 19th minute and Lars Bender slotted home the winner in the 80th after Michael Krohn-Dehli had equalized for Denmark in the first half.

"It's absolutely a day of joy," Bender said. "I'll be thinking back to this day a long, long time. We have a positive spirit in the team."

Germany played without flair, but controlled possession and were never really challenged by the Danes, who go home after stunning the Netherlands in the first match but losing to Portugal in the second.

"We can be satisfied with our effort but not with the result," Denmark midfielder William Kvist said. "I think we proved that we can play against the big teams. We won (against the Netherlands) and we didn't lose big. We showed that we can play against the best."

Germany seized the initiative from the kickoff and came close twice before Podolski, playing his 100th international match, scored his first goal of the tournament.

Mario Gomez set him up with a deft backheel touch following Thomas Mueller's low cross from the right flank.

Denmark replied just five minutes later with Krohn-Dehli heading in the equalizer from a set piece that stunned the German defense. A corner found Nicklas Bendtner who headed the ball into the area where Krohn-Dehli nodded home his second goal at Euro 2012.

Jakob Poulsen missed a chance to put Denmark in the driver's seat at the start of the second half when his shot grazed the outside of German goalkeeper Manuel Neuer's right post.

After that scare, the Germans were firmly in charge and denied Denmark any real chance of getting back into the game.

Coach Morten Olsen's men were already looking tired when Bender, replacing suspended right back Jerome Boateng, picked up a pass from Mesut Oezil and made it 2-1.

"We should have gone ahead by two or three goals in the first half, but Denmark scored virtually out of nowhere," Germany coach Joachim Loew said.

"I think we had the game well under control. You get the feeling Denmark doesn't want to score, that they don't want to go forward, but suddenly they push ahead," he said. "We had a lot of possession and I was sure that we would score and advance."

It was the first competitive match between the two countries since the 1992 European Championship final, when the Danes stunned the Germans with a 2-0 win to become champions.

Hoping for another upset, Olsen changed his lineup by moving playmaker Christian Eriksen to the right flank, replacing injured winger Dennis Rommedahl in a five-man midfield.

But the move had little effect as Philipp Lahm effectively closed down the talented 20-year-old, who leaves Euro 2012 without fulfilling expectations of an international breakthrough.

Olsen praised the Germans, saying they played "fantastic football" that confirmed they are among the favorites to win the European title.

He regretted that Denmark wasn't able to salvage a point in the previous game against Portugal. The Danes conceded in the final minutes in the 3-2 loss.

"Having said that, I think we have done a really good job in this tournament," Olsen said. "This team has a future."

Germany finished top of the group with a perfect record of three wins and now faces Euro 2004 champion Greece on Friday in Gdansk

EURO 2012: Germany vs Denmark Timeline

90+3' - The whistle has gone to end the second half. The match finishes 1-2.
90+2' - Daniel Agger of Denmark is pulled up for offside.
90+2' - Germany drive forward but Andre Schurrle is judged offside.
90+1' - Miroslav Klose of Germany is pulled up for offside.
90+1' - Important block from the Denmark defence as Bastian Schweinsteiger fires in a strike for Germany.
90' - 3 minutes of injury time will be added to the Second half.
86' - Simon Poulsen for Denmark is whistled offside.
84' - Toni Kroos is on a sub for Thomas Muller for Germany.
84' - Daniel Agger (Denmark) gets up for a header but cannot keep the ball on target.
84' - Carlos Velasco Carballo has awarded Denmark a corner. Lars Jacobsen takes the kick from the Right .
82' - Tobias Mikkelsen is replacing Jakob Poulsen for Denmark at Arena Lviv.
80' - Mesut Ozil with an assist there.
80' - Germany take a 1-2 lead thanks to Lars Bender.
78' - Morten Olsen (Denmark) is making a First substitution, with Christian Poulsen replacing Niki Zimling.
78' - Germany's Sami Khedira misses with an attempt on goal.
76' - Nicklas Bendtner for Denmark drives towards goal at Arena Lviv. But the finish is unsuccessful.
74' - Germany make their Second substitution with Miroslav Klose replacing Mario Gomez.
71' - At Arena Lviv Michael Krohn-Dehli (Denmark) takes a corner from the Left.
71' - Niki Zimling gets his shot on target but fails to score for Denmark.
67' - In Lviv Germany drive forward through Andre Schurrle. His shot is on target but it's saved.
64' - Joachim Low is making the team's First substitution at Arena Lviv with Andre Schurrle replacing Lukas Podolski.
64' - Bastian Schweinsteiger (Germany) gets in a strike but the shot is blocked by a defender.
63' - Thomas Muller (Germany) is given an opening but the shot is blocked by a defender.
62' - Germany have been awarded a corner by Carlos Velasco Carballo. Mesut Ozil steps up to take it.
57' - Carlos Velasco Carballo blows against Denmark's Simon Poulsen for offside.
56' - Denmark drive forward and Lars Jacobsen gets in a shot. Without netting, however.
51' - Jakob Poulsen of Denmark gets in a strike, but is off target.
50' - In Lviv Germany attack through Mario Gomez. The finish is off target, however.
46' - The second-half has just kicked-off.
45+1' - The first-half is over.
45' - Simon Kjaer (Denmark) goes for goal but the shot is blocked by an alert defence.
45' - Carlos Velasco Carballo has awarded Denmark a corner. Christian Eriksen takes the kick from the Left .
41' - Germany are coming forward and Sami Khedira gets in a strike, it misses the target, however.
37' - Lukas Podolski for Germany gets in a strike but fails to hit the target.
34' - Germany have been awarded a corner by Carlos Velasco Carballo. Mesut Ozil steps up to take it.
33' - Germany's Mario Gomez breaks free at Arena Lviv. But the strike goes wide of the post.
32' - In Lviv Bastian Schweinsteiger for Germany takes a corner from the Left-hand flag.
29' - Denmark are pushing forward but Michael Krohn-Dehli's finish is wide of the goal.
24' - That's a fine assist from Nicklas Bendtner.
24' - Michael Krohn-Dehli (Denmark) nets with a header to make it 1-1 at Arena Lviv.
23' - At Arena Lviv Lars Jacobsen (Denmark) takes a corner from the Right.
19' - Mario Gomez instrumental with a fine assist.
19' - Goal! Lukas Podolski gives Germany a 0-1 lead.
14' - Nicklas Bendtner of Denmark gets in a strike, but is off target.
12' - Germany are coming forward and Mario Gomez gets in a strike, it misses the target, however.
6' - Germany's Thomas Muller gets in a shot on goal at Arena Lviv. But the effort is unsuccessful.
5' - Nicklas Bendtner (Denmark) gets in a header on goal but the attempt is cleared.
5' - Corner awarded to Denmark.
2' - Germany's Thomas Muller misses with an attempt on goal.
2' - Denmark's Michael Krohn-Dehli has run offside.
1' - The match has started at Arena Lviv.

___________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ _________________________________

Euro Cup 2012 Highlights: Ronaldo Redeems As Portugal Advances

Cristiano Ronaldo created a slice of history in powering Portugal to the quarterfinals of Euro 2012 on Sunday but faces a lonely day off after his supermodel girlfriend decided to remain in New York instead of jetting to Poland.

Ronaldo scored two goals as Portugal beat the Netherlands 2-1 in the Ukranian city of Kharkiv to guarantee itself second place in Group B and a last-eight showdown with the Czech Republic.

After Portugal's impressive recovery from losing to Germany in its opening game, coach Paulo Bento decided to reward his players with a day off to spend with their wives and girlfriends when they return to their Polish training base.

However, Ronaldo will be on his own after his leading lady Irina Shayk opted to stay in the United States rather than travel to the tournament.

"We will rest and regroup and the players will have some time to enjoy themselves," Bento said. "It is important after coming through a difficult group that they can have some normal time. We want everyone to share in our success, the players, the people close to them, the whole nation."

Shayk and Ronaldo are used to spending time apart because of his commitments as one of the world's finest soccer players and her own as one of the most sought-after models on the New York fashion scene.

She was spotted by paparazzi exercising and shopping in New York just hours before Ronaldo geared up for what was one of his most important matches for his national team. "When asked last week if he expected his girlfriend to join him during the event, Ronaldo simply replied "no."

Defeat would have eliminated Portugal from the competition and led to criticism aimed at Ronaldo, whose performances at major tournaments have often been called into question.

In the side's previous match against Denmark, rival fans taunted the 27-year-old by chanting the name of Lionel Messi, the Argentina and Barcelona superstar widely regarded as the only better player in the world.

EURO 2012: Portugal vs Netherlands Timeline

90+4' - The second-half is over. The match ends 2-1.
90+2' - Portugal's Joao Pereira has been booked in Kharkiv.
90' - 4 minutes will be added to the Second half.
90' - Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal) fires in a shot – and hits the post!
89' - Netherlands's Robin van Persie misses with an attempt on goal.
87' - Portugal make their Third substitution with Rolando replacing Nani.
86' - Netherlands's Klaas Jan Huntelaar breaks free at Metalist Stadium. But the strike goes wide of the post.
86' - Portugal are pushing forward but Nani's finish is wide of the goal.
85' - Portugal are coming forward and Nani gets in a strike, it misses the target, however.
84' - Corner awarded to Netherlands.
83' - So close for Netherlands as Rafael van der Vaart's shot comes back off the post.
80' - Portugal push upfield and Nelson Oliveira gets his head to the ball. The attempt is cleared by an alert Netherlands defence.
80' - Nicola Rizzoli has awarded Portugal a corner. Miguel Veloso takes the kick from the Left .
79' - In Kharkiv Portugal attack through Nelson Oliveira. The finish is off target, however.
76' - Netherlands's Wesley Sneijder gets in a shot on goal at Metalist Stadium. But the effort is unsuccessful.
74' - Goal! Cristiano Ronaldo gives Portugal a 2-1 lead in Kharkiv.
74' - Nani with an assist there.
73' - Corner awarded to Portugal.
72' - Nani for Portugal drives towards goal at Metalist Stadium. But the finish is unsuccessful.
72' - Paulo Bento (Portugal) is making a Second change, with Custodio replacing the possibly injured Raul Meireles.
69' - Robin van Persie (Netherlands) has been booked and must now be careful not to get a second yellow card.
68' - Raul Meireles has recovered and rejoins the match in Kharkiv.
68' - Nicola Rizzoli has awarded Portugal a corner. Joao Moutinho takes the kick from the Left .
68' - The match at Metalist Stadium is underway again.
67' - Netherlands make their First substitution with Ibrahim Afellay replacing Jetro Willems.
67' - Attention is being given to Portugal’s Raul Meireles and play has been suspended briefly.
66' - In Kharkiv Portugal drive forward through Fabio Coentrao. His shot is on target but it's saved.
65' - Netherlands push forward at Metalist Stadium and Robin van Persie gets in a strike. This is blocked, however, by a determined Portugal defence.
64' - Nelson Oliveira is on a sub for Helder Postiga for Portugal.
60' - At Metalist Stadium Wesley Sneijder (Netherlands) takes a corner from the Left.
60' - Nicola Rizzoli blows against Portugal's Helder Postiga for offside.
59' - Portugal have been awarded a corner by Nicola Rizzoli. Raul Meireles steps up to take it.
55' - Joao Moutinho of Portugal gets in a strike, but is off target.
54' - Portugal's Helder Postiga is whistled for offside at Metalist Stadium.
53' - In Kharkiv, Ron Vlaar (Netherlands) misses the target with a header.
53' - In Kharkiv Wesley Sneijder for Netherlands takes a corner from the Left-hand flag.
52' - Portugal's Joao Moutinho looks ok and returns to the pitch.
52' - Play has been resumed at Metalist Stadium.
52' - Play has been interrupted briefly in Kharkiv to check on Joao Moutinho, who is grimacing with pain.
51' - Jetro Willems (Netherlands) has been given a yellow card and will be suspended from the next match.
50' - Nicola Rizzoli has awarded Netherlands a corner. Wesley Sneijder takes the kick from the Left .
49' - Joao Moutinho for Portugal gets in a strike but fails to hit the target.
48' - Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal) gets in a strike but the shot is blocked by a defender.
46' - The second-half is underway in Kharkiv.
45' - The first-half is over at Metalist Stadium.
41' - Portugal are pushing forward but Cristiano Ronaldo's finish is wide of the goal.
38' - Portugal are coming forward and Miguel Veloso gets in a strike, it misses the target, however.
35' - Portugal attack but Cristiano Ronaldo's header doesn't find the target.
35' - Corner awarded to Portugal.
34' - Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal) is given an opening but the shot is blocked by a defender.
33' - Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo gets in a shot on goal at Metalist Stadium. But the effort is unsuccessful.
31' - Nani of Portugal gets in a strike, but is off target.
28' - Joao Pereira instrumental with a fine assist.
28' - Cristiano Ronaldo levels the scores at 1-1.
27' - Wesley Sneijder for Netherlands drives towards goal at Metalist Stadium. But the finish is unsuccessful.
24' - Cristiano Ronaldo for Portugal is whistled offside.
23' - Portugal push forward at Metalist Stadium and Cristiano Ronaldo gets in a great header. The attempt is cleared by the Netherlands defence.
22' - Netherlands surge into the attack at Metalist Stadium but Nigel de Jong’s header is off-target.
22' - Netherlands have been awarded a corner by Nicola Rizzoli. Rafael van der Vaart steps up to take it.
20' - In Kharkiv, Robin van Persie of Netherlands is presented with a shooting opportunity. But the strike is blocked by the covering defence.
18' - Portugal's Raul Meireles gets his shot away but it misses the target.
18' - In Kharkiv Raul Meireles for Portugal takes a corner from the Right-hand flag.
18' - Helder Postiga gets his shot on target but fails to score for Portugal.
17' - Portugal drive forward but Cristiano Ronaldo is judged offside.
16' - Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo misses with an attempt on goal.
11' - That's a fine assist from Arjen Robben.
11' - Netherlands take a 0-1 lead thanks to Rafael van der Vaart.
10' - Netherlands's Wesley Sneijder has run offside.
7' - At Metalist Stadium Joao Moutinho (Portugal) takes a corner from the Left.
7' - Important block from the Netherlands defence as Cristiano Ronaldo fires in a strike for Portugal.
6' - Netherlands's Rafael van der Vaart gets in a shot but it is blocked by a Portugal defender.
4' - Netherlands's Wesley Sneijder breaks free at Metalist Stadium. But the strike goes wide of the post.
1' - The match has started.

Always re visit this thread or see us on The Online Sports World: Real Sports, Real Time, Really Quick!
 

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Euro 2012 Predictions and Preview: Sweden vs France


Group Elimination D: Tuesday, 19 June 2012 - Kiev - Olympic Stadium


France meets with Sweden on the 19th at the Olympic Stadium in Kiev for a final Group D match up.


France


France demonstrated their prowess during the qualification stages with on Greece being able to penetrate their barrier. The France have one of the finest defensive lines in the UEFA today and amongst their Euro 2012 counterparts. France is far from the power they used to have ten or even six years back when they were able to reach the World Cup finals but even today, they remain a fairly strong team.


One problem however, is the French attack, although defense is strong as ever, their offensive is one of the weakest and the team is considered one of the lowest goal scorers playing in Euro 2012. “les bleus” are place at the second highest within their group at a rank of 16 behind England, the highest. But Sweden on the other hand, is only one rank below France at 17.


Sweden


The Swedes already lost two Group D matches, one against England at 2-3 and against Ukraine at 2-1. The Swedes have solid defense with experienced players like Martin Olsson, Olaf Melber, and Andreas Issakson but there seems to be a lack in team work and this allowed the English to score a 3-2 win against them. Their attacking formation was decent and they quickly took the game early on against England but their drive eventually subsided.


Predictions: France wins 2-1


Both teams have an excellent defensive line-up but Sweden’s strong opposition might not be enough for France’s much superior defensive barrier. All France need to do is figure out a way to exploit the Swede’s weaknesses. The French, by far has done better than the Swedes beginning in the qualification stages up to the group matches where Sweden yet to make a win.


Don't miss a score! Catch real time updates on your favorite EURO 2012 MATCH. Which team will win?

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Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview: Czech Republic vs Portugal Predictions

The Czech Republic take on the Portuguese on June 21 at the Warsaw National Stadium.

Czech Republic Preview


It was a bad start for the Czech Republic at the beginning of the tournament. They were thrashed by the Ruskies 4-1 during their opening game. The second was better, beating Greece 2-1 setting up a make or break against co-hosts Poland when they managed to beat the Poles 1-0 and winning the two points clear of Greece thus setting them up for the upcoming Quarterfinals. It was Peter Jiracek who scored the winning singular score against Poland halfway through the second half of the game.

Coach Michal Bilek needs to lead an offensive against the favorites Portugal. Ronaldo and the boys are becoming a tighter outfit as the tournament progresses.

Portugal Preview


Portugal went through the same predicament
that the Czechs did at the onset of the tournament losing to Germany 1-0 but later redeemed themselves against Denmark during a suspenseful five goal match with a 3-2 score. Then came the crucial game against the Netherlands. Captain Cristiano Ronaldo redeemed himself after a previous underperformance against Denmark and Germany. He had a poor performance at first and received a lot of criticism. The Portuguese team came in second in Group B trailing three points behind Germany. Ronaldo playing alongside Nani, Raul Meireles, Pepe, and Portos creates a force to be reckoned with as long and as they put their heads together and Ronaldo steps up, they will maintain their consistency.


Czech Republic vs Portugal Predictions: Portugal wins 2-1


The Portuguese are adds-on favorites in this match. After a 3-2 victory over the Danes, it goes to show the attacking power they possess. Although defense may seem weak at times, a line-up like the Portuguese’ may put the Czechs on constant defensive mode.

Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview: Czech Republic vs Portugal Predictions

____________________________________________________________________________

Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview: Germany vs Greece Predictions

The Germans take on the Greeks on June 22 at the Arena Gdansk.

Greece Preview


The Greek team had a poor opening at the onset of the tournament with a 1-1 draw against Poland during the opener and a 2-1 lost to the Czech Republic in the second game. Greece was fated to exit the tournament after their lost against the Czech Republic and we can also include the draw with Poland. Then came the make or break match against Russia. Russia was the Group A favorites at the time but were knocked out of the tournament by the Greeks with a 1-0 victory that shocked Russians and the Greeks alike.


Germany Preview


The Germans look unstoppable at this point in the tournament. Winning all ten games in the qualifying stage and all three games during the group eliminations finishing three points ahead of Group B runners-up, Portugal, the Germans will take on Group A runners-up, Greece on the 22nd of June.

The Germans have fairly young players but have a World Cup run in their portfolios. But a weak defense line is a problem that they need to resolve soon. In the past, they have let far too many goals in, although their attack is strong, this weakness can compromise their chances at winning later down the line.

Germany vs Greece Predictions: Germany wins 2-1


The Germans look to win the match against the Czechs. The records show a lot about the team and Germany’s current state is favorable by far when compared to the Czechs. Their only apparent weakness is their defensive line but if they make upgrades, the Germans can go far up the tournament ladder.

Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview: Germany vs Greece Predictions

Keep on revisiting this thread thank you...
 
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ihate

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Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview: Czech Republic vs Portugal Predictions

The Czech Republic take on the Portuguese on June 21 at the Warsaw National Stadium.

Czech Republic Preview

It was a bad start for the Czech Republic at the beginning of the tournament. They were thrashed by the Ruskies 4-1 during their opening game. The second was better, beating Greece 2-1 setting up a make or break against co-hosts Poland when they managed to beat the Poles 1-0 and winning the two points clear of Greece thus setting them up for the upcoming Quarterfinals. It was Peter Jiracek who scored the winning singular score against Poland halfway through the second half of the game.

Coach Michal Bilek needs to lead an offensive against the favorites Portugal. Ronaldo and the boys are becoming a tighter outfit as the tournament progresses.

Portugal Preview

Portugal went through the same predicament that the Czechs did at the onset of the tournament losing to Germany 1-0 but later redeemed themselves against Denmark during a suspenseful five goal match with a 3-2 score. Then came the crucial game against the Netherlands. Captain Cristiano Ronaldo redeemed himself after a previous underperformance against Denmark and Germany. He had a poor performance at first and received a lot of criticism. The Portuguese team came in second in Group B trailing three points behind Germany. Ronaldo playing alongside Nani, Raul Meireles, Pepe, and Portos creates a force to be reckoned with as long and as they put their heads together and Ronaldo steps up, they will maintain their consistency.

Czech Republic vs Portugal Predictions: Portugal wins 2-1

The Portuguese are adds-on favorites in this match. After a 3-2 victory over the Danes, it goes to show the attacking power they possess. Although defense may seem weak at times, a line-up like the Portuguese’ may put the Czechs on constant defensive mode.

Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview: Czech Republic vs Portugal Predictions
_______________________________________________________________________________________________


Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview: Germany vs Greece Predictions

The Germans take on the Greeks on June 22 at the Arena Gdansk.

Greece Preview

The Greek team had a poor opening at the onset of the tournament with a 1-1 draw against Poland during the opener and a 2-1 lost to the Czech Republic in the second game. Greece was fated to exit the tournament after their lost against the Czech Republic and we can also include the draw with Poland. Then came the make or break match against Russia. Russia was the Group A favorites at the time but were knocked out of the tournament by the Greeks with a 1-0 victory that shocked Russians and the Greeks alike.

Germany Preview

The Germans look unstoppable at this point in the tournament. Winning all ten games in the qualifying stage and all three games during the group eliminations finishing three points ahead of Group B runners-up, Portugal, the Germans will take on Group A runners-up, Greece on the 22nd of June.

The Germans have fairly young players but have a World Cup run in their portfolios. But a weak defense line is a problem that they need to resolve soon. In the past, they have let far too many goals in, although their attack is strong, this weakness can compromise their chances at winning later down the line.

Germany vs Greece Predictions: Germany wins 2-1

The Germans look to win the match against the Czechs. The records show a lot about the team and Germany’s current state is favorable by far when compared to the Czechs. Their only apparent weakness is their defensive line but if they make upgrades, the Germans can go far up the tournament ladder.


Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview: Czech Republic vs Portugal Predictions


Keep revisiting this thread for daily updates..

thank you..
 
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ihate

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Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview: Czech Republic vs Portugal Predictions

The Czech Republic take on the Portuguese on June 21 at the Warsaw National Stadium.

Czech Republic Preview

It was a bad start for the Czech Republic at the beginning of the tournament. They were thrashed by the Ruskies 4-1 during their opening game. The second was better, beating Greece 2-1 setting up a make or break against co-hosts Poland when they managed to beat the Poles 1-0 and winning the two points clear of Greece thus setting them up for the upcoming Quarterfinals. It was Peter Jiracek who scored the winning singular score against Poland halfway through the second half of the game.

Coach Michal Bilek needs to lead an offensive against the favorites Portugal. Ronaldo and the boys are becoming a tighter outfit as the tournament progresses.

Portugal Preview

Portugal went through the same predicament that the Czechs did at the onset of the tournament losing to Germany 1-0 but later redeemed themselves against Denmark during a suspenseful five goal match with a 3-2 score. Then came the crucial game against the Netherlands. Captain Cristiano Ronaldo redeemed himself after a previous underperformance against Denmark and Germany. He had a poor performance at first and received a lot of criticism. The Portuguese team came in second in Group B trailing three points behind Germany. Ronaldo playing alongside Nani, Raul Meireles, Pepe, and Portos creates a force to be reckoned with as long and as they put their heads together and Ronaldo steps up, they will maintain their consistency.

Czech Republic vs Portugal Predictions: Portugal wins 2-1

The Portuguese are adds-on favorites in this match. After a 3-2 victory over the Danes, it goes to show the attacking power they possess. Although defense may seem weak at times, a line-up like the Portuguese’ may put the Czechs on constant defensive mode.

Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview: Czech Republic vs Portugal Predictions
_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview: Germany vs Greece Predictions

The Germans take on the Greeks on June 22 at the Arena Gdansk.

Greece Preview

The Greek team had a poor opening at the onset of the tournament with a 1-1 draw against Poland during the opener and a 2-1 lost to the Czech Republic in the second game. Greece was fated to exit the tournament after their lost against the Czech Republic and we can also include the draw with Poland. Then came the make or break match against Russia. Russia was the Group A favorites at the time but were knocked out of the tournament by the Greeks with a 1-0 victory that shocked Russians and the Greeks alike.

Germany Preview

The Germans look unstoppable at this point in the tournament. Winning all ten games in the qualifying stage and all three games during the group eliminations finishing three points ahead of Group B runners-up, Portugal, the Germans will take on Group A runners-up, Greece on the 22nd of June.

The Germans have fairly young players but have a World Cup run in their portfolios. But a weak defense line is a problem that they need to resolve soon. In the past, they have let far too many goals in, although their attack is strong, this weakness can compromise their chances at winning later down the line.

Germany vs Greece Predictions: Germany wins 2-1

The Germans look to win the match against the Czechs. The records show a lot about the team and Germany’s current state is favorable by far when compared to the Czechs. Their only apparent weakness is their defensive line but if they make upgrades, the Germans can go far up the tournament ladder.


Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview: Czech Republic vs Portugal Predictions


_____________________________________________________________________________________________
Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview: England vs Italy Predictions

England squares off against Italy in the knockout stage on June 24 at Kiev’s Olympic Stadium.

England Preview


After a controversial 1-0 win against Ukraine on the 19th, England heads off to join the Quarterfinals squaring off against Italy. The English did fairly well during the qualifying stage with 5 wins and 3 draws. They finished the Group stage at the top of Group D with an overall score of 7 followed by France with a score of 4. Now, with Wayne Rooney back in action from a two game suspension, the Three Lions look ready for battle.

The seemingly smooth ride to the Quarters is not all it seemed. England had just lost the midfield duo, Gareth Barry whose cover had always been a valuable asset to the team’s defense and Frank Lampard with his goal making skills to injuries. England’s already less than satisfactory offense may have been weakened further. Wayne Rooney may have scored the winning goal against Ukraine on the closing Group match, but that was all it was, one point. He looked a bit rusty on the field during that last match. Their defense may need a little bit of fine tuning against the strong Italian offensive as well.

Italy Preview


The Group C Runners-Up and four time World Cup winners, Italy has been one of the favorites to win the Delauney Cup next to Spain of course. Their brilliance in attack has taken them to heights in tournaments that most teams aren’t capable of reaching. Although of course their performance and aggressive nature was less then apparent during the Group stage finishing second to the top which is Spain with a score of 5, Spain finished with 7, the Italians are still, by far, a strong team. CesarePrandelli isn’t just another good coach, he is known as an excellent tactician moving Italy forward despite constant problems.

One problem the Italians are facing is the fact that they don’t have enough top players that guarantee a top-level performance and rely almost solely on Prandelli’s intuition. Prandelli too often, prefers unusual formations but one man’s choice cannot always be suitable to seal a win against the opposing team.

England vs Italy Predictions: Italy wins 2-1
The win for this upcoming match has to be more inclined to Italy. The Italians have used brilliant attack formations that have guaranteed victory and although England has excellent defense, the Italians have a good chance of exploiting whatever ***** they may have in their armor.
Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview: England vs Italy Predictions
___________________________________________________________________________________________________


Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview: Spain vs France Predictions

The Spaniards take on the French on the 23rd at the Donbask Arena in Donetsk

Spain Preview


The “Red Fury” topped Group C as expected with a score of 7 after two wins against the Republic of Ireland and Croatia and a draw with Italy. The defending champions barely won against Croatia with a late goal but thrashed the Irish 4-0. It was Italy that gave them a run for their money as always ending the match in a draw. Currently Spain looks solid and are expected to bring their aggressive brand of football into the Quarter-finals against France whose 23 unbeaten matches in a row, only to be ended by Sweden, goes to show that the French should not be taken lightly.

But the Spaniards are yet to be tested and the nonappearance of main striker David Villa and defender Carlos Puyol can put the team in a compromising situation. A waning defense was already apparent during the game against the Croatians.

France Preview


Group D Runners-up, France, would have conceived a better score than their final 4 had not the Swedes ended their match in a shocker with France losing 2-0. This ended their 23 unbeaten match record. Nevertheless, France made it to the Quarter-finals face to face with the best team in the tournament. This may seem unfair, even for a team that is considered one of the major contenders for the Delauny Trophy.The French need to pick up pace and tidy up their already impeccable attack skills. This can thoroughly compromise the Spanish defense lead to a great upset. In other words, they really need to work hard to achieve the unlikely.


Spain vs France Predictions: Spain wins 1-0


It’s either the Spanish look too strong or the French seem a little weaker. Being easily overpowered by Sweden, a team that finished at the bottom of the Group, proved that the French may have consistency issues. Their poor performance during the closer points to a weakening defense and a faltering attack.

Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview: Spain vs France Predictions
 

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Here's The Highlights last game

Euro Cup 2012 Highlights: Hummels Continues Making Noise As Germany Advances

The breakout star of Euro 2012 is modest to a fault, so much so that when he was told he had been tabbed as the player of the tournament so far, he thought his teammates were playing a practical joke on him.

Mats Hummels is not a name hot on the lips of many American soccer fans, much less the wider sporting public, yet he has suddenly been thrust into the spotlight at the world's second-biggest tournament as the young face of Germany's rampaging national team.

Part of the reason for Hummels' lack of widespread recognition, even among soccer supporters, is that his club side Borussia Dortmund, two-time reigning German champion, failed to make it past the group stage of this season's Champions League.

No longer. From the moment French legend Zinedine Zidane, winner of the 1998 World Cup, Euro 2000 and three-time world player of the year, picked out Hummels as the only player who has seriously impressed at the Euros, the focus was going to intensify.

Hummels was on form again Friday as Germany cruised into the semifinal thanks to a comfortable 4-2 victory over Greece in Gdansk for a fourth straight win in the competition, to follow on from 10 in a row in qualifying.

Mats Hummels is making a name for himself in the Euro 2012 tournament. (Reuters)

Now, it seems, whatever happens in the remainder of the tournament, he will leave Poland and Ukraine with his reputation greatly enhanced.

It is rare that central defenders get the kind of plaudits like the one dished out by Zidane, and – once Hummels realized it wasn't a joke – the compliment was gratefully received. Yet neither is Hummels a typical defender, having been given the liberty to venture forward and create offense by coach Joachim Loew, an opportunity he has eagerly snapped up.

A far cry from the uber-efficient and somewhat mechanical teams of the past, the current German side is fun to watch and has attracted plenty of neutrals into their corner. Hummels' role may be the epitome of that and, now just two more wins from the title, the Germans are easing more and more comfortably into the role of favorite – despite the continued progress of reigning European and World Cup champion Spain.

"We know what is expected," said Hummels. "In Germany the publicity says nothing, but the title counts."

Indeed, the pressure on this young side has been nothing short of extreme. Frustrated by close shaves in recent times, like defeat to Spain in the Euro 2008 final and the 2010 World Cup semifinal, the German public believes the time is now to clinch a first major tournament trophy since 1996.

While there was hope and some degree of optimism four years ago and again two years ago, now nothing short of triumph will be considered good enough.

That, surely, is part of the reason wily coach Loew has sought to keep things so low key around his training camp. His players are free to smoke, drink, entertain their partners and do pretty much whatever they like outside training, an attitude that has not been abused but that has certainly helped lighten the mood.

Mueller was one of three first-choice players to be rested against Greece, a sign of Loew's unshakeable confidence in the strength of his squad. Leading scorer Mario Gomez also made way in favor of Miroslav Klose, while Lukas Podolski was also left in the line up. In the end it didn't matter, although there were a few nervous moments. Phil Lahm's thunderous strike 39 minutes in put the Germans in control, but an equalizer against the run of play from Giorgos Samaras gave the courageous Greeks a sniff at a shock result.

However, Germany asserted its authority once more, with three goals in 13 minutes throughout the middle of the second half, killing off the Greek challenge. Sami Khedira's blast from inside the area sapped the life out of Greece, before a Klose header and a fierce strike from Marco Reus sealed the deal. Dimitris Salpingidis scored a late penalty to make it 4-2 but it was little more than a consolation – and Germany marches onward.

"This is a young team and we believe in ourselves," said Hummels, who on this night was not called into so much action due to Greece's lack of attacking ambition. "We are having fun and we are ready to be adaptable. It is nice to go forwards and to be recognized for that, but I am prepared to be a wall if I need to be."

EURO 2012: Germany vs Greece Timeline

90+2' - The match is over. Final score 4-2.
90' - At PGE Arena Gdansk the fourth official shows that 2 minutes will be added to the Second half.
89' - Greece are back in the match in Gdansk. A Dimitris Salpingidis penalty has made the score 4-2.
88' - Greece have been awarded a penalty...
85' - In Gdansk Germany drive forward through Mesut Ozil. His shot is on target but it's saved.
83' - Giorgos Fotakis for Greece drives towards goal at PGE Arena Gdansk. But the finish is unsuccessful.
81' - Germany's Mario Gomez is whistled for offside at PGE Arena Gdansk.
81' - Germany push forward through Mesut Ozil, whose finish on goal is saved.
80' - Mario Gotze is on a sub for Marco Reus for Germany.
80' - Joachim Low (Germany) is making a Second substitution, with Mario Gomez replacing Miroslav Klose.
75' - Sokratis Papastathopoulos (Greece) gets a yellow card.
74' - Goal! Marco Reus extends Germany's lead to 4-1.
72' - Damir Skomina has awarded Germany a corner. Mesut Ozil takes the kick from the Right .
72' - Greece make their Third substitution with Nikos Liberopoulos replacing Grigoris Makos.
69' - At PGE Arena Gdansk Mesut Ozil (Germany) takes a corner from the Right.
69' - Germany drive forward and Miroslav Klose gets in a shot. Without netting, however.
68' - Germany move into a 3-1 lead through a Miroslav Klose header.
68' - Great play from Mesut Ozil to set up the goal.
67' - Germany make their First substitution with Thomas Muller replacing Andre Schurrle.
66' - Kyriakos Papadopoulos (Greece) wins the ball in the air but heads wide.
66' - Damir Skomina has awarded Greece a corner. Giorgos Fotakis takes the kick from the Right .
64' - Germany's Miroslav Klose has run offside.
63' - Greece's Fanis Gekas gets his shot away but it misses the target.
61' - Goal! Sami Khedira gives Germany a 2-1 lead.
61' - That's a fine assist from Jerome Boateng.
60' - Germany's Andre Schurrle breaks free at PGE Arena Gdansk. But the strike goes wide of the post.
57' - Corner awarded to Germany.
55' - Georgios Samaras gets an equalizer for Greece. The score is now 1-1.
55' - Dimitris Salpingidis with an assist there.
54' - In Gdansk Greece's Dimitris Salpingidis is caught offside.
54' - In Gdansk Mesut Ozil for Germany takes a corner from the Right-hand flag.
50' - Damir Skomina blows against Greece's Fanis Gekas for offside.
48' - Germany have been awarded a corner by Damir Skomina. Mesut Ozil steps up to take it.
46' - Giorgos Fotakis is on a sub for Georgios Tzavellas for Greece.
46' - Fanis Gekas is replacing Sotiris Ninis for Greece at PGE Arena Gdansk.
46' - The second-half is underway. Germany with the kick-off.
45+3' - The first half has been concluded at PGE Arena Gdansk.
45+1' - Andre Schurrle for Germany gets in a strike but fails to hit the target.
45' - 3 minutes will be added to the First half in Gdansk.
45' - Damir Skomina has awarded Germany a corner. Mesut Ozil takes the kick from the Right .
43' - Germany's Miroslav Klose is whistled for offside at PGE Arena Gdansk.
39' - Germany take a 1-0 lead thanks to Philipp Lahm.
36' - Corner awarded to Germany.
36' - Sami Khedira of Germany smashes in a shot on target. The keeper saves, though.
35' - In Gdansk Mesut Ozil for Germany takes a corner from the Left-hand flag.
33' - Germany are coming forward and Andre Schurrle gets in a strike, it misses the target, however.
32' - Greece's Sotiris Ninis is on target but unsuccessful.
25' - Germany's Marco Reus misses with an attempt on goal.
24' - Marco Reus of Germany gets in a strike, but is off target.
24' - At PGE Arena Gdansk Mesut Ozil (Germany) takes a corner from the Right.
24' - In Gdansk, Marco Reus of Germany is presented with a shooting opportunity. But the strike is blocked by the covering defence.
23' - Germany have been awarded a corner by Damir Skomina. Mesut Ozil steps up to take it.
23' - Mesut Ozil (Germany) is given an opening but the shot is blocked by a defender.
14' - Greece's Georgios Samaras has been booked in Gdansk.
11' - Germany are coming forward and Marco Reus gets in a strike, it misses the target, however.
8' - Greece's Grigoris Makos gets in a shot on goal at PGE Arena Gdansk. But the effort is unsuccessful.
6' - Germany are pushing forward but Sami Khedira's finish is wide of the goal.
5' - Michalis Sifakis for Greece is back on the field again.
5' - Play has been resumed at PGE Arena Gdansk.
4' - Attention is being given to Greece’s Michalis Sifakis and play has been suspended briefly.
4' - In Gdansk Germany's Miroslav Klose is caught offside.
4' - Sami Khedira returns to the field for Germany after picking up a slight injury.
3' - Damir Skomina has blown to resume play in Gdansk.
2' - Damir Skomina waits before resuming play because Sami Khedira for Germany is still down.
1' - Miroslav Klose of Germany is pulled up for offside.
1' - The referee blows his whistle to start the first-half. Greece with the kick-off.


Euro Cup 2012 Highlights:Germany vs Greece
 

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Here's The Highlights on Quarter Final Round

Euro Cup 2012 Highlights: Alonso Shines As Spain Advance
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Xabi Alonso scored two goals in his 100th international appearance Saturday, leading Spain to a 2-0 win over France and a spot in the European Championship semifinals.

Alonso first scored with a thumping downward header in the 19th minute and then converted a penalty in injury time.

"We knew this was the most important match and we played very well," Alonso said. "Scoring the early goal really made things easy, so I must say we're happy."

The win was Spain's first over France in a competitive match in seven attempts. Spain will next face Portugal on Wednesday in Donetsk in the semifinals as it bids to win a third straight major title.

"When you lose a game there's always something missing, I'm not sure if it's possession or technical ability," France coach Laurent Blanc said. "The lads gave everything and it's very hard to play against Spain. We blocked their left flank, which is their strong point."

The opening goal was the result of excellent one-touch football - the hallmark of Spain's game. Andres Iniesta prodded the ball through for Jordi Alba, who whipped a perfect cross from the left to Alonso. The Real Madrid midfielder timed his run so well that no France defender picked him up.

"He knows how to sacrifice himself, help the team and where to play," Spain coach Vicente del Bosque said. "He is one of the attacking strengths of ours. He knows how to create and finish."

Spain wrapped things up after France right back Anthony Reveillere barged into substitute forward Pedro Rodriguez in injury time. Alonso coolly sent goalkeeper Hugo Lloris the wrong way from the spot, looking right but clipping the ball firmly to the left.

France's only shot on target came in the 32nd minute when Yohan Cabaye’s free kick was tipped over by Spain goalkeeper Iker Casillas.

"They were there for the taking," Blanc said. "We knew we would get some chances, and the only thing I regret is that they scored off their first good chance. If we had gone in level at 0-0 at halftime, then I think we would have had more room in the second half."

The match was sometimes dull, but the Spanish did not really need to change gears after Alonso's opening goal.

Although the French made it out of the group stage for the first time since the 2006 World Cup, the manner of Saturday's loss will be disappointing for a team touted as one of the tournament's dangerous outsiders.

France formed a deep defensive line and watched awe-struck as Spain flicked the ball around as if it were a training session. The Spanish made dummy runs everywhere early on, and had a penalty claim waved away in the sixth minute when Cesc Fabregas tumbled under a challenge from left back Gael Clichy.

Spain soon pulled a compact France team out of position in the 10th minute as Iniesta curled a ball behind center half Adil Rami but it was too far for Fabregas to reach.

Karim Benzema, looking for his first goal at a major tournament, looked sharp and made some good runs, but the Real Madrid striker rarely got any service. He was fouled in the 32nd after galloping onto Florent Malouda's pass, and Cabaye's free kick was sailing into the top left corner before Casillas shuffled across quickly to save it.

While the French averted a repeat of the 2010 World Cup crisis - when the entire squad went on strike at training - the buildup to Saturday's game was marred by tensions in the camp following a heated dressing room bust-up after the 2-0 loss to Sweden.

"The big teams have all showed up at this Euro, and they will be in the semifinals," Blanc said. "Unfortunately, France won't be."

EURO 2012: Spain vs France Timeline

90+4' - It's 2-0 as the referee blows for full-time.

90+3' - At Donbass Arena Santi Cazorla (Spain) takes a corner from the Right.

90+3' - In Donetsk, Fernando Torres of Spain is presented with a shooting opportunity. But the strike is blocked by the covering defence.

90+2' - At Donbass Arena the fourth official shows that 4 minutes will be added to the Second half.

90' - Xabi Alonso gives Spain a 2-0 lead from the penalty spot.

90' - Spain have been given a penalty...

88' - France have been awarded a corner by Nicola Rizzoli. Samir Nasri steps up to take it.

86' - Olivier Giroud for France is whistled offside.

84' - Santi Cazorla is replacing Andres Iniesta for Spain at Donbass Arena.

80' - Spain's Fernando Torres is whistled for offside at Donbass Arena.

79' - France make their Third substitution with Olivier Giroud replacing Yann M'Vila.

77' - Corner awarded to Spain.

76' - Jeremy Menez (France) has been given a yellow card and will be suspended from the next match.

72' - Nicola Rizzoli blows against Spain's Fernando Torres for offside.

71' - Fernando Torres of Spain is pulled up for offside.

69' - Nicola Rizzoli has awarded Spain a corner. Xavi takes the kick from the Left .

69' - Important block from the France defence as Xavi fires in a strike for Spain.

67' - Fernando Torres is on a sub for Cesc Fabregas for Spain.

66' - In Donetsk Xavi for Spain takes a corner from the Left-hand flag.

65' - Spain make their First substitution with Pedro replacing David Silva.

65' - Samir Nasri is on a sub for Florent Malouda for France.

64' - Laurent Blanc is making the team's First substitution at Donbass Arena with Jeremy Menez replacing Mathieu Debuchy.

64' - France are pushing forward but Karim Benzema's finish is wide of the goal.

60' - France attack but Mathieu Debuchy's header doesn't find the target.

58' - France have been awarded a corner by Nicola Rizzoli. Franck Ribery steps up to take it.

51' - Spain's Xabi Alonso gets his shot away but it misses the target.

46' - The second half has started at Donbass Arena.

45+1' - The first-half is over at Donbass Arena.

45' - Spain's Xavi gets in a shot on goal at Donbass Arena. But the effort is unsuccessful.

42' - France's Yohan Cabaye has been booked in Donetsk.

41' - Corner awarded to Spain.

38' - Spain's Gerard Pique attacks the ball with his head but his effort fails to hit the target.

38' - At Donbass Arena Xavi (Spain) takes a corner from the Right.

32' - In Donetsk Franck Ribery for France takes a corner from the Left-hand flag.

32' - Yohan Cabaye gets his shot on target but fails to score for France.

31' - Sergio Ramos for Spain has been booked by Nicola Rizzoli and receives a first yellow card.

30' - Cesc Fabregas's header is off-target for Spain.

29' - Nicola Rizzoli has awarded Spain a corner. Xavi takes the kick from the Right .

29' - Andres Iniesta (Spain) gets in a strike but the shot is blocked by a defender.

26' - France are coming forward and Karim Benzema gets in a strike, it misses the target, however.

25' - Spain's Alvaro Arbeloa is whistled for offside at Donbass Arena.

20' - Spain's Xavi misses with an attempt on goal.

19' - That's a fine assist from Jordi Alba.

19' - Goal! Spain take a 1-0 lead through a well-placed header from Xabi Alonso.

17' - In Donetsk Spain's Cesc Fabregas is caught offside.

8' - In Donetsk Spain drive forward through Xabi Alonso. His shot is on target but it's saved.

1' - The match is underway at Donbass Arena.

Euro Cup 2012 Quarter final Highlights Germany vs France
 

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Here's The Predictions and previews Next Game

Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview: Spain vs Portugal Predictions


Ronaldo leads Portugal into the Semi’s against the Champions on June 27 at Ukraine’s Donbass Arena
As the Euro 2012 tournament closes in, the tension and excitement increases and the teams that remain intact are facing more challenges as the path to the top becomes narrower. The two teams that made it to the Semifinals, Spain and Portugal show signs of exhaustion but the determinations of each team remain and this will become apparent on the 27th.

Spain Preview


The Spaniards are the latest team to make it through the remaining four of the Euros after ousting France on the 24th with 2-0 victory. It was Xabi Alonso’s time to shine as the midfielder from Real Madrid scored during the 19th minute from the start of the match and another from the penalty spot. Coach Vicente Del Bosque focused on the team’s offensive side by reverting to the old system of using six midfielders. Their outright show of attack was extremely successful putting France on the defensive throughout the game.

However efficient they may have seemed during the match against France, Spain is showing signs of fatigue and drainage which is common amongst teams during the concluding end of a long football tournament. Mostly the veterans of the team such Inestia, Fabregas and Silva displayed signs of lacking sharpness and were unable to bank on many clear-cut chances. As the Semifinal game against Portugal nears, the boys of the “Red Fury” need to take advantage of the rest time as they have two days less of resting than the Portuguese.

Portugal Preview


Group runners-up, Portugal clinched a 1-0 victory over Group A’s top team, the Czech Republic that guaranteed Semifinal ticket on the 21st. Cristiano Ronaldo proved to be the savior as he scored the game’s solo goal on the 79th minute of the match. The Czech’s actually had a positive start but the Portuguese gradually asserted their domineering presence and the game became a one-sided affair by the second half. Both the teams had a similar record during the Group stage even though it was Portugal that was the more favorable of the two. This coming match-up against Spain has an advantage for Portugal, they have two more days of rest and recovery than the Spaniards who just finished off France on the 24th.

In order for Ronaldo and team to survive the upcoming match-up, they have two things that they really need to work on especially against a team such as the Spaniards, it’s both their defense and attack. It would be wise to say that adding an explosive nature to their attack would help the team. During the first half of the previous match against the Czechs, the Portuguese were constantly on the defensive and there were many close calls in the opposing team’s favor. Their assertive side developed slowly in the game and it wasted a lot of time. Also, their defense needs some upgrading that will protect them from Spain’s aggressive style of attack.

Spain vs Portugal Predictions: Spain wins 2-0


The Spaniards seem to have many of the traits that a winning team should possess. They are truly dynamic in nature, showing the ability to adapt to the style of the opponent plus coach Del Bosque is a brilliant tactician. The Spaniards are more aggressive when compared to the other teams and their defensive records are decent. The Portuguese are usually slow to take possession and this upcoming match is going to be a race for domination. The team that takes the offensive first will most likely win.

Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview: Spain vs Portugal Predictions
 

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Here's The Latest Highlights:

Euro Cup 2012 Highlights: Italy Capitalizes On Penalties Defeats England


Alessandro Diamanti scored the decisive penalty kick Sunday to send Italy through to the European Championship semifinals with a 4-2 win in the shootout following a 0-0 tie with England and a spot.

Ashley Young hit the crossbar with England's third, and Ashley Cole's attempt was saved by Gianluigi Buffon.

Italy will next play Germany in the semifinals on Thursday in Warsaw, Poland. Defending champion Spain plays Portugal on Wednesday in Donetsk, Ukraine.

Mario Balotelli, Andrea Pirlo - with an audacious slow chip-shot down the middle of the goal - and Antonio Nocerino also scored for Italy. Steven Gerrard and Wayne Rooney scored England's penalties.

The match ended 0-0 after 120 minutes of play. The Italians twice hit the post, but were also let down by poor composure in front of goal. Diamanti clipped the post with a curling cross in the 101st minute, and swept a clear shot wide in the clearest chance of the second period of extra time.

Nocerino, another substitute, thought he had scored from Diamanti's cross in the 115th but was offside.

Daniele De Rossi hit the post in the third minute, and Buffon saved a shot from Glen Johnson in the fifth.

For England, it was yet another exit from a major tournament in the quarterfinals after a penalty shootout. England lost to Portugal in the same manner at Euro 2004 and the 2006 World Cup.

"We have done the country proud but again we go home with heartbreak and it's difficult to take," said Gerrard, who played in both those previous shootout losses.

Italy dominated the match, which ended 0-0 after 120 minutes of play. The Italians twice hit the post, but were also let down by poor composure in front of goal. Diamanti clipped the post with a curling cross in the 101st minute, and swept a clear shot wide.

The first scoreless match at Euro 2012 was neither dull nor lacking good soccer.

Italy's attacking desire and creativity under coach Cesare Prandelli had playmaker Andrea Pirlo at its heart. Italy had 35 shots, compared to only nine for England.

England had briefly led the shootout after Riccardo Montolivo missed Italy's second penalty. His shot went wide of Joe Hart's right post as the England goalkeeper guessed correctly.

Rooney then sent Buffon the wrong way, firing in his spot kick to the keeper's right to give England a 2-1 lead.

The momentum shifted after Pirlo's bold piece of skill leveled at 2-2.

It had been perhaps the toughest Euro 2012 quarterfinal match to predict, and Italy and England set the tone by both coming close within five minutes.

De Rossi hit the post with a spinning left-foot shot from 25 yards, then Johnson's scooped shot from close range was swatted away by Buffon.

An intriguing match almost demanded that Balotelli take center stage. The Italy forward ran clear in the 25th, but hesitated and allowed John Terry to block his chipped shot.

Balotelli forced Hart, his teammate at Manchester City, to save an acrobatic shot, then surged between England's central defenders before putting a half-volley over the crossbar. He kicked the goal post in frustration.

Italy continued surging in the second half and De Rossi, taking a ball over his shoulder, scuffed his shot wide. De Rossi sank to his knees in obvious exasperation, and more Italian frustration quickly followed.

Three rapid-fire chances in the 52nd saw Hart beat away De Rossi's long-range shot, block Balotelli's follow-up and watch Montolivo lash the loose ball high.

EURO 2012: England vs Italy Timeline

It's 2-4 at the end of the penalty shootout.
Alessandro Diamanti (Italy) succeeds from the penalty spot.
Ashley Cole (England) misses his penalty attempt!
Antonio Nocerino (Italy) scores!
Ashley Young (England) misses!
Andrea Pirlo (Italy) scores from the penalty spot.
Wayne Rooney (England) succeeds from the penalty spot.
A devastated Riccardo Montolivo (Italy) misses and walks back to his team mates.
Steven Gerrard (England) converts his penalty!
Mario Balotelli (Italy) scores!
The match goes to penalties!
We are now ready for the penalty shootout!

119' - Italy's Riccardo Montolivo misses with an attempt on goal.

117' - Pedro Proenca has awarded Italy a corner. Alessandro Diamanti takes the kick from the Right .

115' - Italy's Antonio Nocerino is whistled for offside at Olimpiysky National Sports Complex.

113' - Alessandro Diamanti of Italy gets in a strike, but is off target.

113' - In Kiev, Christian Maggio of Italy is presented with a shooting opportunity. But the strike is blocked by the covering defence.

112' - Italy's Mario Balotelli breaks free at Olimpiysky National Sports Complex. But the strike goes wide of the post.

106' - The whistle has gone to start the second extra period.

101' - Alessandro Diamanti hits the post! Very nearly a goal there for Italy!

100' - Mario Balotelli gets his shot on target but fails to score for Italy.

99' - Mario Balotelli of Italy smashes in a shot on target. The keeper saves, though.

98' - Italy's Mario Balotelli gets in a shot but it is blocked by a England defender.

95' - Pedro Proenca blows against England's Joleon Lescott for offside.

94' - England make their Third substitution with Jordan Henderson replacing Scott Parker.

94' - Christian Maggio (Italy) gets a yellow card. He will be suspended from the next match!

93' - Italy's Antonio Nocerino misses with an attempt on goal.

91' - The first extra period has started.

90+3' - The score after normal time is 0-0.

90+2' - England's Wayne Rooney gets his shot away but it misses the target.

90+1' - Italy push forward at Olimpiysky National Sports Complex and Andrea Pirlo gets in a strike. This is blocked, however, by a determined England defence.

90' - Christian Maggio is on a sub for Ignazio Abate for Italy.

90' - 3 minutes of injury time will be added to the Second half.

89' - At Olimpiysky National Sports Complex Andrea Pirlo (Italy) takes a corner from the Right.

89' - Important block from the England defence as Antonio Nocerino fires in
a strike for Italy.

87' - England drive upfield and Andy Carroll gets in a shot. The strike is blocked by a Italy defender.

85' - Federico Balzaretti is back on his feet again.

84' - The match at Olimpiysky National Sports Complex is underway again.

83' - Play has been interrupted briefly in Kiev to check on Federico Balzaretti, who is grimacing with pain.

83' - In Kiev, Scott Parker of England is presented with a shooting opportunity. But the strike is blocked by the covering defence.

82' - Andrea Barzagli (Italy) has been booked and must now be careful not to get a second yellow card.

81' - Italy's Alessandro Diamanti gets in a shot on goal at Olimpiysky National Sports Complex. But the effort is unsuccessful.

80' - Cesare Prandelli is making the team's Second substitution at Olimpiysky National Sports Complex with Antonio Nocerino replacing Daniele De Rossi.

79' - Federico Balzaretti (Italy) goes for goal but the shot is blocked by an alert defence.

79' - Corner awarded to Italy.

78' - Alessandro Diamanti is on a sub for Antonio Cassano for Italy.

75' - Italy push forward at Olimpiysky National Sports Complex and Claudio Marchisio gets in a strike. This is blocked, however, by a determined England defence.

75' - Riccardo Montolivo (Italy) goes for goal but the shot is blocked by an alert defence.

74' - Steven Gerrard for England is back on the field again.

73' - Pedro Proenca has blown to resume play in Kiev.

72' - The match at Olimpiysky National Sports Complex has been interrupted briefly for a check on Steven Gerrard, who is down injured.

67' - Italy's Daniele De Rossi gets in a shot but it is blocked by a England defender.

67' - Claudio Marchisio (Italy) is given an opening but the shot is blocked by a defender.

65' - In Kiev Steven Gerrard for England takes a corner from the Left-hand flag.

65' - Important block from the Italy defence as Ashley Young fires in a strike for England.

63' - Italy are coming forward and Daniele De Rossi gets in a strike, it misses the target, however.

62' - In Kiev Italy's Antonio Cassano is caught offside.

60' - England make their Second substitution with Theo Walcott replacing James Milner.

60' - Andy Carroll is replacing Danny Welbeck for England at Olimpiysky National Sports Complex.

60' - Italy are pushing forward but Mario Balotelli's finish is wide of the goal.

60' - England’s Ashley Young is on his feet again at Olimpiysky National Sports Complex.

60' - Ignazio Abate returns to the field for Italy after picking up a slight injury.

59' - Play has been resumed.

58' - Ashley Young is writhing in pain and play has been suspended for a few moments.

58' - Attention is being given to Italy’s Ignazio Abate and play has been suspended briefly.

56' - Italy have been awarded a corner by Pedro Proenca. Andrea Pirlo steps up to take it.

53' - In Kiev England attack through James Milner. The finish is off target, however.

53' - Riccardo Montolivo for Italy gets in a strike but fails to hit the target.

52' - Mario Balotelli for Italy drives towards goal at Olimpiysky National Sports Complex. But the finish is unsuccessful.

52' - In Kiev Italy drive forward through Daniele De Rossi. His shot is on target but it's saved.

49' - In Kiev Steven Gerrard for England takes a corner from the Left-hand flag.

48' - Italy's Daniele De Rossi misses with an attempt on goal.

48' - Italy have been awarded a corner by Pedro Proenca. Andrea Pirlo steps up to take it.

46' - Pedro Proenca has blown to start the second-half.

45' - The first-half has ended.

43' - Italy's Mario Balotelli breaks free at Olimpiysky National Sports Complex. But the strike goes wide of the post.

42' - At Olimpiysky National Sports Complex Andrea Pirlo (Italy) takes a corner from the Right.

41' - Italy drive upfield and Antonio Cassano gets in a shot. The strike is blocked by a England defender.

38' - Italy push forward through Antonio Cassano, whose finish on goal is saved.

33' - In Kiev Italy attack through Antonio Cassano. The finish is off target, however.

32' - England are pushing forward but Danny Welbeck's finish is wide of the goal.

32' - Italy's Mario Balotelli is on target but unsuccessful.

29' - Italy are coming forward and Riccardo Montolivo gets in a strike, it misses the target, however.

25' - Mario Balotelli (Italy) gets in a strike but the shot is blocked by a defender.

25' - Italy's Antonio Cassano gets in a shot on goal at Olimpiysky National Sports Complex. But the effort is unsuccessful.

22' - Italy's Antonio Cassano gets his shot away but it misses the target.

21' - Pedro Proenca has awarded Italy a corner. Andrea Pirlo takes the kick from the Left .

14' - Wayne Rooney (England) wins the ball in the air but heads wide.

13' - Scott Parker of England gets in a strike, but is off target.

11' - Corner awarded to England.

5' - Glen Johnson gets his shot on target but fails to score for England.

3' - So close for Italy as Daniele De Rossi's shot comes back off the post.

1' - Mario Balotelli for Italy drives towards goal at Olimpiysky National Sports Complex. But the finish is unsuccessful.

1' - The first-half is now underway.


Euro Cup 2012 England vs Italy Highlights
 

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June 29,2012 Game Predictions


Euro 2012 Semifinals Preview: Germany vs Italy Predictions


Germany and Italy will both proceed to the Semifinals on the 28th of June at the National Stadium in Warsaw.


Both undefeated, the two teams have found their niche within the tournament in completely different ways, Germany with their offensive power and Italy with their brilliance in defense. Which tactic will lead to victory?


Germany Preview


The Germans survived the Group stage at number 1 in Group B. They have a perfect record with no draws and no defeats. Germany have waltzed through the tournament being the only team to gain the only maximum nine-point haul in the group stages and effortlessly smashed Greece to pieces in the quarterfinals. These offensive juggernauts are a force to be reckoned with and Mario Gomez is one of only four footballers to score a trio of goals since the start of the group stage. Italy does not have even one player who scored multiple goals.Also, MesutOzil is one of only four footballers to record three assists. Bastian Schweinsteiger also has a pair. If you’re aware of the track record, you already know that Italy doesn’t have one player who’s recorded multiple assists.


However, the opposing team’s strength is on a totally different side than that of Germany’s, it’s the defense. The Germans with their attack brilliance might need to boost up their offense even more against Italy’s defensive wall or else, the game is going nowhere.


Italy Preview


The 2006 World Cup winners are on the track to regain their status as one of the most feared football units in the world. The Italians have a rich history in world football but when it comes to winning the Henri Delauney trophy, the record becomes cloudy only winning the prestigious Euro cup back in 1968 when luck played a big part in their victory over the USSR on Italian soil. Nevertheless, the Azzurris prove to be a force that is not to be taken lightly as they proceed through the Euros with an untainted record and only to be topped off by Spain with two points in the Group C standings.


Germany, however, will certainly give the Italians a run for their money. The Italians have a near flawless defense record and pride themselves with this attribute. They haven’t surrendered more than a single goal in regulation since the group stage began. But defense may not be enough to win against a team like the Germans whose power of attack is brilliant. They need to strengthen their offensive side and take control of the game before the Germans do. Italy has scored just four total goals, and that’s resulted in two draws as well as forced their shootout against England.


Germany vs Italy Predictions: Germany wins 1-0


Okay let’s pay a little bit of consideration to Italy’s defensive structure. But if you can’t score, you can’t win…unless you force a shootout. Italy has a brilliant football team but it would truly be shocking if they outscore Germany.


Euro 2012 Semifinals Preview: Germany vs Italy Predictions
 

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June 27.2012 Euro Cup Highlights

Euro Cup 2012 Highlights: Fabregas Comes Up Big, Sends Spain To The Finals

Spain's 'Tiki Taka' passing was off-tempo at the Donbass Arena but the holders, unable to hurt Portugal in 120 minutes of stalemate, broke their hearts in a penalty shootout to reach the final of Euro 2012 on Wednesday.

Substitute Cesc Fabregas converted the winning spot-kick, off the inside of the post, to set off wild celebrations from the Spanish players.

"When I stepped up to take the penalty I said to the ball that we had to make history and that it shouldn't let me down," said an ecstatic Fabregas after Spain's 4-2 spot-kick victory following a 0-0 draw after extra time.

For Portugal, who had fought hard all night, questions will be asked why their top scorer Cristiano Ronaldo did not take a kick as they fell to their third semi-final defeat in four appearances at the stage.

Portugal had won their previous two penalty shootouts in major tournament matches.

But coach Paulo Bento was proud of the way his team went toe-to-toe with the world champions, even outdoing them in terms of possession.

"If I had to choose a way of losing I wouldn't choose this way... Spain is a great team but we can leave with our heads high," he said.

"We can be sure that we can compete with any team at any tournament."

Spain have now equaled West Germany's European record from the early 1970s by reaching three consecutive major tournament finals and victory in Kiev on Sunday would make them the first team to win three in a row.

But the watching Germans and Italians, who meet in Warsaw on Thursday, will have taken heart from a below-par performance from the Spaniards against a pressing Portugal team.

The aura of invincibility that once surrounded them has gradually faded in this tournament and while they still remain the team to beat, their 'Tiki Taka' passing did not hurt Portugal.

"We can argue about whether we played well or not but what we cannot dispute is that the defense was excellent," said Spain coach Vicente Del Bosque.

Indeed the Spanish back-line have now kept a clean sheet in their last nine knockout stage matches in the World Cup and European Championship.

The lack of effectiveness for Spain was further down the field with surprise selection Alvaro Negredo making little impact in attack and the midfield missing their usual sharpness.

After a lively opening half hour, with both teams looking to get forward, the game gradually fizzled out and it was no surprise when the outcome had to be decided by penalties.

Xabi Alonso was first up for Spain and Portugal keeper Rui Patricio got down well to push his effort wide but then his opposite number Iker Casillas did likewise to save from Joao Moutinho.

The ball finally got in the net - after 120 minutes and two penalties - when Andres Iniesta scored with trademark composure but the contest turned when Portugal missed their fourth penalty when Bruno Alves struck the bar.

Alves had walked to take the third kick before being called away by Nani who converted his effort and that change only added to the mystery as to why Ronaldo was not used.

The Real Madrid winger was penciled in for the fifth kick but after Fabregas' fortunate conversion off the posts, there was to be no fifth penalty.

"We had this plan and if it would have been 4-4 and he would taken the last penalty we would be talking in a different way," said Bento, who conceded there had been some confusion between Nani and Alves.

While the shootout provided most of the thrills, the two teams had suggested they might produce an exciting encounter from the outset.

Spain threatened twice in the opening half hour with Alvaro Arbeloa and Iniesta going close while at the other end Ronaldo fired a shot just past the post.

Ronaldo had a rare chance in the final minute of normal time but, after being fed by Raul Meireles after a fast counter-attack, he fired high and wide.

Patricio produced an excellent save to foil a close-range effort from Iniesta late in the first period of extra-time but it was no surprise when the contest had to be determined by penalties.

Portugal have never won a semi-final in a major tournament on foreign soil - their only triumph coming in 2004 when they hosted the tournament and were beaten by Greece in the final.

EURO 2012: Spain vs Portugal Timeline

The penalty shootout is over. The final score is 2-4.
Cesc Fabregas (Spain) scores from the penalty spot.
Bruno Alves (Portugal) fails to convert his penalty!
Sergio Ramos (Spain) succeeds from the penalty spot.
Nani (Portugal) scores!
Gerard Pique (Spain) succeeds from the penalty spot.
Pepe (Portugal) converts his penalty!
Andres Iniesta (Spain) scores from the penalty spot.
Joao Moutinho (Portugal) misses his penalty attempt!
A devastated Xabi Alonso (Spain) misses and walks back to his team mates.
We are now ready for the penalty shootout!
The match goes to penalties!

117' - Cuneyt Cakir blows against Spain's Andres Iniesta for offside.

114' - Corner awarded to Spain.

113' - Xabi Alonso (Spain) has been booked and must now be careful not to
get a second yellow card.

112' - Portugal make their Third substitution with Silvestre Varela replacing Raul Meireles.

111' - Spain drive forward and Jesus Navas gets in a shot. Without netting, however.

110' - Cesc Fabregas (Spain) is given an opening but the shot is blocked by a defender.

106' - The second extra period is now underway.

106' - Custodio is replacing Miguel Veloso for Portugal at Donbass Arena.

105' - Spain's Sergio Ramos breaks free at Donbass Arena. But the strike goes wide of the post.

104' - Spain have been awarded a corner by Cuneyt Cakir. Cesc Fabregas steps up to take it.

104' - In Donetsk Spain drive forward through Andres Iniesta. His shot is on target but it's saved.

102' - Cuneyt Cakir has awarded Spain a corner. Cesc Fabregas takes the kick from the Right.

102' - At Donbass Arena Cesc Fabregas (Spain) takes a corner from the Right.

101' - Spain’s Pedro is on his feet again at Donbass Arena.

100' - The match at Donbass Arena is underway again.

100' - Play has been interrupted briefly in Donetsk to check on Pedro, who is
grimacing with pain.

96' - In Donetsk, Andres Iniesta of Spain is presented with a shooting opportunity. But the strike is blocked by the covering defence.

91' - Spain's Pedro is whistled for offside at Donbass Arena.

91' - The first extra period is just kicking-off.

90+3' - It's 2-4 at the end of normal time.

90+2' - Miguel Veloso (Portugal) gets a yellow card.

90+1' - Spain have been awarded a corner by Cuneyt Cakir. Xabi Alonso steps
up to take it.

90' - The fourth official's board shows 3 minutes, which will be added to the Second half.

90' - Cristiano Ronaldo for Portugal gets in a strike but fails to hit the target.

87' - Vicente del Bosque is making the team's Third substitution at Donbass Arena with Pedro replacing Xavi.

86' - Bruno Alves (Portugal) has been booked and must now be careful not to get a second yellow card.

84' - In Donetsk Portugal attack through Cristiano Ronaldo. The finish is off target, however.

84' - Alvaro Arbeloa (Spain) gets a yellow card.

84' - Portugal push forward at Donbass Arena and Cristiano Ronaldo gets in a strike. This is blocked, however, by a determined Spain defence.

81' - Nelson Oliveira is on a sub for Hugo Almeida for Portugal.

78' - In Donetsk Spain attack through Cesc Fabregas. The finish is off target, however.

76' - Cuneyt Cakir has awarded Portugal a corner. Nani takes the kick from the Right.

73' - Cristiano Ronaldo for Portugal gets in a strike but fails to hit the target.

68' - Portugal's Hugo Almeida gets his shot away but it misses the target.

68' - Spain's Xavi is on target but unsuccessfull

65' - In Donetsk Xavi for Spain takes a corner from the Left-hand flag.

64' - Joao Pereira (Portugal) has received a first yellow card.

62' - Spain's Xabi Alonso is back in action after a slight knock.

62' - Play is underway once more.

61' - Play has been temporarily suspended for attention to Xabi Alonso for Spain who is writhing in pain on the pitch.

61' - Pepe (Portugal) gets a yellow card.

60' - Vicente del Bosque (Spain) is making a Second substitution, with Jesus Navas replacing David Silva.

60' - Sergio Busquets (Spain) has been booked and must now be careful not
to get a second yellow card.

59' - Hugo Almeida for Portugal is whistled offside.

59' - Hugo Almeida of Portugal gets in a strike, but is off target.

57' - Portugal are pushing forward but Hugo Almeida's finish is wide of the goal.

57' - Corner awarded to Portugal.

54' - Spain make their First substitution with Cesc Fabregas replacing Alvaro Negredo.

53' - At Donbass Arena Joao Moutinho (Portugal) takes a corner from the Right.

52' - Spain's Sergio Ramos has run offside.

51' - Cuneyt Cakir has awarded Spain a corner. Xavi takes the kick from the Left .

46' - The second-half is underway at Donbass Arena.

45+1' - The ref's whistle signals the end of the first-half.

45' - Fabio Coentrao for Portugal has been booked by Cuneyt Cakir and receives a first yellow card.

41' - Sergio Ramos (Spain) has received a first yellow card.

40' - Spain drive upfield and Alvaro Negredo gets in a shot. The strike is blocked by a Portugal defender.

37' - Nani has recovered and rejoins the match in Donetsk.

36' - The match is underway again.

35' - Attention is being given to Portugal’s Nani and play has been suspended briefly.

32' - Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo misses with an attempt on goal.

29' - Spain are pushing forward but Andres Iniesta's finish is wide of the goal.

25' - In Donetsk Portugal's Hugo Almeida is caught offside.

24' - Cristiano Ronaldo of Portugal gets in a strike, but is off target.

17' - Corner awarded to Portugal.

17' - Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo gets in a shot but it is blocked by a Spain defender.

10' - Spain are coming forward and Andres Iniesta gets in a strike, it misses the target, however.

9' - Spain's Alvaro Arbeloa breaks free at Donbass Arena. But the strike goes wide of the post.

2' - Portugal have been awarded a corner by Cuneyt Cakir. Raul Meireles steps up to take it.

2' - In Donetsk Miguel Veloso for Portugal takes a corner from the Right-hand flag.

2' - Important block from the Spain defence as Miguel Veloso fires in a strike for Portugal.

1' - Today's referee, Cuneyt Cakir, has blown to start the match.


Euro Cup 2012 Highlights: Fabregas Comes Up Big, Sends Spain To The Finals
 
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