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Match mash-up - Euro 2nd round reviewlets

More brief and not unbiased thoughts, observations, and predictions after the second round...

Group A

Poland vs. Russia, 1-1

Greece vs. Czech Republic, 1-2

I didn't watch any of these games, but, um, looks like Russia has 4 points and the Czech Republic has 3. Russia will most likely beat Greece. It will be interesting to see how the refs handle Poland-Czech Republic.

Group B

Germany vs. The Netherlands, 2-1

Germany is definitely the team to watch! Neuer, Ozil, and Gomez are all the best players in their positions that I've seen at this tournament. They even displayed some tiqui-taca that warmed my Spain NT-loving heart. And the Dutch really can't seem to get it together this year, can they? I thought that Robben was going to punch someone out on his way back to the bench.

Portugal vs. Denmark, 3-2

Very exciting game! Portugal managed to pull off a win to stay firmly in the running for Group B. (No thanks to Cristiano Ronaldo, who screwed up every opportunity he got to score - and I have never seen a team captain look so unhappy after a victory as he did at the end of this game.)

Group C

Croatia vs. Italy, 1-1

I now understand why my housemate likes Pirlo so much - what a gorgeous free kick that was! Too bad his teammates couldn't manage a second goal.

Spain vs. Ireland, 4-0

Not gonna lie - Cesc Fabregas couldn't have been more disappointed than I to learn that VDB had decided to start Torres as our striker. But he certainly showed me! Literally had tears in my eyes when he scored that first goal four minutes in (as perhaps jezziejay did as well, albeit for completely different reasons). Spain played much better than they had in the first round - their passes were quicker and more accurate, their defense failed to embarrass me, and they actually looked at times like the defending World Champions they are. And what an amazing(ly lucky) goal by Cesc once VDB finally sent him on! Spain is top of Group C now, and I'm feeling a lot more optimistic about our chances for the tournament.

By the way, have to give kudos to the Ireland supporters - their singing near the end of the match put a lump in my throat. Spain fans would have been jeering and whistling and waving their handkerchiefs by the second goal.

Group D

Ukraine vs. France, 0-2

France continued to look good, although the downpour that delayed the game did put a bit of a damper on proceedings. I was pleased by that cutie Cabaye's goal, but I know nothing about him - I hope that a little research won't reveal that he's an enormous arsehole or anything. Still no goal for central striker Benzema, though!

Sweden vs. England, 2-3

No joy for Ibra either, it seems. I saw the first goal from Carroll but then had to go do some actual work. Looks like my prediction that France and England will go on from the group stage could still come true!

Again, those of you who have been watching, please chime in to agree, contradict, and/or add your own impressions from any of these matches!


( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 16th, 2012 02:12 pm (UTC)
I haven't found a way to watch Italy-Croatia yet, I was busy with motherly duties (still a spectator's sport, but it was my daughter's training).

Germany-Netherlands was impressive. In both games, I bet Mario Gomez ended up playing checkers with the other team's goalie because they spet so much time together alone (Gomez never goes more than twenty meters from the goal, I swear). Still, it's a strategy that won, twice. To think that before the fact the two most vilified players were Gomez and Schweinsteiger was fun. And Özil is a genius, although his eyes are Very Weird.

I wasn't impressed by Spain at all. The Irish defense must have made Trapattoni want to go seppuku by their inconsistency, and the Spaniards managed to score once for every six easy occasions. The defense was definitely okay, the mid field perfect, but attackers... seriously? These are the world and european champions?
I know it seems a silly thing to say for a 4-0 victory, but I watched the match and that's the impression I had. Maybe it was due to the weather conditions.

Edited at 2012-06-16 02:12 pm (UTC)
Jun. 16th, 2012 02:42 pm (UTC)
And Özil is a genius, although his eyes are Very Weird.

LOL. His unconventional looks have begun to grow on me. Also, I saw someone standing in the Turkish Airlines line at the airport who had eyes exactly like his!

The defense was definitely okay, the mid field perfect, but attackers... seriously? These are the world and european champions?

Sigh... still very much missing Villa. Spain's youth systems seem to build brilliant midfielders/team players, not so much selfish strikers (which is really what one needs at times).
(Deleted comment)
Jun. 19th, 2012 10:47 am (UTC)
Yesterday's match was *awful*. However, the pitch was really bad - I could actually see the bumps in the turf that kept turning the ball askew, which is terrible for Spain's passing game. Also, Croatia's defense was much better organized, but Spain created quite a few scoring opportunities (especially corner kicks, not that they tend to help my crazy shorties much) and deserved to draw (at least), even if they got lucky with that goal right at the end.

Torres *shakes head*. Sometimes he comes through, sometimes he doesn't. Fabregas also seemed kind of lackluster, even if he did assist Iniesta for the goal that he gifted to Navas.
Jun. 16th, 2012 08:42 pm (UTC)
I'll just repeat what I said in your last post about this - hard to know how good the other team actually are, when Ireland are so awful. We were very, very lucky to get away with 4-0.

Congrats to Spain, and you, too :)
Jun. 17th, 2012 01:34 am (UTC)
Thanks! It's true, but I'll take what I can get and hope that it boosts Torres' confidence enough to give us more goals in the future.
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )



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