UEFA Euro 2012: My Predictions

Hello everyone!

Well, it's been a long time since my last post. I guess I've been too 'busy' to write anything on this blog! Haha. Anyway, today I will write some. And what other better topic to write other than football! Haha. I know, this topic is not a topic that everyone would like to read. But I want to start (more like a restart) writing with something that I really like.

Ok guys, European Football Cup 2012  a.k.a UEFA Euro 2012 has just started!  This tournament is one of football most prestigious tournaments in the world. It's up there alongside FIFA World Cup & UEFA Champions League. 16 countries in Europe will compete in one month from this 9 June 2012 until 2 July 2012. This year, Poland & Ukraine are the host nations. I won't discuss in details about the tactics & analysis. That will be on my other blog which is specifically about football. Hopefully during this month I will be able to gather enough materials to start that new blog. Keep checking on this blog or follow my twitter if you are interested to know when the site is up.

UEFA Euro 2012 official logo

Previous winner: Spain. Euro 2008
So let's start with countries that I'm supporting for this Euro 2012. As usual, I'm supporting England! I've been supporting them since World Cup 1998. That time, there were the likes of Michael Owen (my first football idol), Beckham, Shearer, Seaman, Anderton, Le Saux, Ince, Southghate, Scholes, Sheringham and others in the England squad. So this year, captain fantastic from Liverpool, Steven Gerrard (also my football idol) is leading the team. After failing to qualify for Euro 2008 & a disappointing World Cup 2010 campaign, England come to this tournament as an underdog. There are no longer high expectations from the fans, media & football analysts. Honestly, I'm also not expecting much from current England squad. The new manager, Roy Hodgson was appointed just about a month ago. Too many injuries in the team and backup players had to be called up. Looking at England's game play, in short, they will play this defensive and boring football. They will employ a counter-attack tactic & direct movement, where Carroll could be a crucial player in the team that would act as a target man. They won't play beautiful football like Spain, Germany, & Holland. Instead, they will set up a very rigid & solid defensive department at the back and try to counter whenever they have a chance. They could win a match by 1-0, 2-1 or any scoreline with one goal deficit (two goals at most). It's boring but can be very effective. I think they will qualify to the play-off round. That's my only expectation. But that's what my head says. What my heart says is that they can go all the way to the final with 1-0 wins. Haha. Sounds not quite realistic. But I don't know, I just hope they can do that. Who knows, right? Personally I'm very happy with the fact that 6 Liverpool players are in the England squad - Gerrard, Carroll, Downing, Johnson, Henderson, & Kelly. Barring Gerrard & Johnson, all of them are average players. But they do have the certain quality & good discipline that suit for England team. I'm actually sick & tired with people bashing these Liverpool players just because Liverpool had a terrible season in the league. Come on, let's not forget what happened to Lampard (Chelsea) & Rooney (Man Utd) in the World Cup 2006 & World Cup 2010 respectively. Both had a great season for the club before the World Cup and yet the were like 'invisible' during the tournaments matches. Both failed to register even a single goal. As an England supporter, I support England players all the way regardless from which club they come from. But what can I say, most of the people who criticize those players are not even supporting England. Typical ignorant football fans perhaps. England are in the group D with France, Ukraine, & Sweden. Ok, to sum up, I hope England will do well in the tournament. Qualify to the play-off round at the very least. All the best The Three Lions!

England

Liverpool players in England Euro 2012 team
Gerrard - Downing
Henderson  - Carroll
Johnson - Kelly
Now, what the other team I'm supporting for this Euro2012? Well, it's Ireland! Haha. Nothing really interesting about the Irish squad actually. But they are like the 'good guys' in the tournament. I always like Ireland and it's people (even though I haven't met any of them! Haha). I don't know, maybe because of they have nice cities (Dublin & Sligo) & Westilfe (the Irish band) seems like a bunch of nice fellas. Maybe those two things influence me to have this positive perception towards them. Coincidentally, from what I know, Liverpool fans in Liverpool are also supporting Ireland.  From BBC website: "Liverpool has a long standing public image as an Irish city, so much so that it is often jokingly referred to as the ‘Capital of Ireland". Aha, very interesting. Anyway, Ireland do have good players at the moment. Not world-class, but quality enough to play in this tournament. They have Keane, Doyle, Duff, O'shea, Dunne, Given, and others. And of course, they have their two important players from WBA team; Long & Cox (and why are you smiling? Haha). I don't actually know how they play, but I hope they can get something from this tournament. They have been drawn in the group C with tough opponents; Spain, Italy, & Croatia. So, good luck Ireland!

Ireland
Now let's talk about which country that I think could win Euro 2012. But bear in mind that I don't necessarily want them to win, it's merely my prediction. My first choice is Holland. Why? Holland play great football, they have great on-form players, they work very well as a team (except Robben!), & they want to redeem that lost in the World Cup 2010 to Spain. I saw them playing few times before the tournament & they were great - despite one loss in recent friendly. By the time I'm writing this, it's already the second day of the tournament. And Holland, surprisingly lost to Denmark by 1-0 in their first match. They are in the group of death with Portugal, Denmark & Germany. But I still believe they can qualify to the play-off round and go all the way to the final.

Holland
The second team that I believe could win is Germany. Obviously they are the favorite. So many people say that this is their time to win European Cup. And they are rightly so. The German play great football and they have so many world-class players. And most of them are still quite young. I saw their first match against Portugal, they won 1-0. Germany have organized & solid defenders. But I don't pick them as my the first choice because they always have this bad luck in major tournaments. Since 2000, they lost in 2 finals (World  Cup 2002 & Euro 2008), they lost 2 semi-finals (World Cup 2006 & World Cup 2010), & failed to qualify to the play-off round in Euro 2000 & Euro 2004. Plus, their biggest football club Bayern Munich, lost two UEFA Champions League Finals in space of 2 years (2010, 2012). Pity them. So, I guess the won't win this tournament too? Haha. But realistically, they are up there among Holland & Spain as favorites.

Germany
My third choice is France. Yes, it's not Spain. Like Germany & Holland, France play nice football & look well-prepared for this tournament. Benzema, Ribery, M'Vila, Nasri, and other players are in very good form. I pick them as a 'surprise' winner. There are always surprise teams in big tournaments, right? This time I believe it will be France. But I don't really hope they win it because I don't want to see Evra lifting the trophy. I hate that player! Hahaha.

France
Why don't I pick Spain? Well, clearly Spain are the favorite. But I just have this feeling that it won't be their year. I don't believe they (in fact, any team) can win 3 major trophy in a row (after World Cup 2010 & Euro 2008). Besides, they have a slight striker issue. Villa is not in the team due to injury & Torres is not at his best. It's hard to say whether Llorente & Negredo can fill Villa's absence because Villa is a world-class striker. It's hard to find striker like his quality. Another thing is, their inspirational centre-back, Puyol is not in team because of injury. Pique needs to adapt playing with a new partner, Ramos. I'm not a fan of Ramos. Sure, he is great player, very athletic. But he does like to do weird thing and often lose concentration. He also has annoying attitude. Pique & Ramos partnership could be a  problem for Spain. However, Spain are great team. They play terrific football & work wonderfully well together. They could prove my prediction wrong. But it's my prediction, I have my reasons and I'm sticking to it. As for the other countries, I believe they are good, but not great enough to win the tournament.

Spain
So, there you go. That's my predictions for this Euro 2012. I'm sure everyone has different opinions. Share with me if you like. Leave your opinion or a link to your article on the comment section. Lastly, I really hope England win this Euro 2012. It's a huge task but it's possible. And I also hope all Liverpool players will perform well in the tournament.

That's all for now. Thanks for reading!

Comments

  1. kenape xpilih itali?oh man!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Jarang tgk Italy main. So, tak berani nak predict diorang menang. Tp mestila diorang ada chance. Semi-final mungkin?

    ReplyDelete

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