The 2012 UEFA European Football Championship, commonly referred to as Euro 2012, start yesterday evening in Warsaw Poland and I will be writing a daily blog article with the salient features of all the games. Please send us your thoughts and comments on the form below. – Filip v d Plas-
Spanish refs are known for wanting to put their imprint on the game – they are almost all universally bad and everyone sighs when they are assigned to any game where ‘their team’ is involved.
This 41-year-old Spanish referee will be remembered for his negative impact on the game – two wrongful yellow cards to a Greek player Sokratis Papastathopoulos sent off with a cumulative 2 yellows+ red - and in the second half he gave the Polish goalie Wojciech Szczesny direct red.
As the Guardians Kevin McCarraw put it best– “The Spanish official had been within his rights to take such action, but perhaps, too, he felt the urge to show Uefa that he is not a waverer. There was no indication that he felt any interest in employing his own powers of discretion with an act of clemency.” http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/2012/jun/08/euro-2012-poland-greece-match-report
Having said all of that he was equally bad for both sides – so at least as arbiter he was fair. But this was a very bad representative for football refereeing in Europe. Inspite of this negative referee, what an exciting and great game Poland / Greece ended up being! The game had everything – including a missed penalty.
The penalty was amazingly saved by 2nd choice goalkeeper Przemyslaw Tyton, – remember that name…well okay remember at least the last name which is easier. His first touch of the ball almost certainly and single-handedly salvaged one point for the Poles in their Group A.
Poland controlled the first 45 min of play and taking the lead in the 17th minute with a brilliant goal by Robert Lewandowski – who could be player of the tournament – if his team mates are able to help him keep Poland in. They showed little signs of this unfortunately and the Polish coach will have many questions to ask about why the team failed to take advantage of its many created opportunities.
If we exclude the brave Greeks – playing with one man less for good part of the game – the Poles should have put the game away and didn’t. Poland had a win in their hands but could not finish. Greece showed their experience and did what they had to do to survive the first game.
RUSSIA-Czech Republic 4-1
Russia vs. Czech provided more goals and was just as exciting and the refereeing was excellent.
The 21-year-old Alan Dzagoev produced two great clinical finishes to give Russia the lead and restore a two-goal cushion and was dangerous every time he had the ball. A lot was expected from this player and he exceeded all his positive reviews. He reacted with unusual and refreshing modesty, surely the sign of a future great player -http://indrus.in/articles/2012/06/09/dont_overestimate_my_achievements_dzagoev_15953.html
Andrei Arshavin – who seems to be a new player since his loan from Arsenal to Zenit St Petersburg – was at the centre of every Russian attack and moved with elegance and full of confidence – a site that Arsenal fans will have to think …why can he not do that for us!?
Number 11, Aleksandr Kerzhakov, had a really horrible night – a Gomez type of jinx where every shot goes array and hitting the post and completely a waste of space and wasteful in front of goal. It took Advocaat what seemed like about 5 years to figure this out, when he was eventually replaced by Pavlyuchenko.
When Roman Pavlyuchenko did come off the bench he immediately assisted Dzagoev for his 2nd goal of and produced the most brilliant goal of the tournament thus far. He ran with of power and fragility through countless Czech defenders using sublime technique and then quickly and forcefully shot into the left corner – no chance for goalie Cech, who did manage a touch on the ball.
Poland and Russia will survive the group.
In Berlin there are many places to watch the games – one is ARENA – http://www.arena-berlin.de/event.aspx?eventId=392832
Filip v d P
And from the BBC who know a lot about football if not a lot about politics – http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/18091750
and from the US ………a very educated article from ESPN – http://espn.go.com/sports/soccer/news/_/id/7306134/euro-2012-draw-favorites-underdogs-long
This blog is brought to you by …..OTA-Berlin Constituency Blog’ is part of OTA-Berlin ‘……the intelligent Apartment-Alternative to Hotels in Berlin’. The views of the article are those of the writer Mr Filip v d Plas and not necessarily those of OTA-Berlin.
EURO 2012 – Daily Report – DAY 1 – Bad Spanish referee & Great Russian Team …first days highlights – report on Poland vs Greece & Russia vs Czech Republic – Later Today Denmark/Holland + Germany/Portugal – by contributor Mr Filip van der Plas from OTA Berlin is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Germany License. If you use this article or parts of it, please refer to http://www.ota-berlin.de.
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