Euro 2012 – Ukraine and Poland

February 17, 2003

Big guns stunned on night of surprises

Filed under: EURO 2004 — Ivan @ 11:11 am

The News Review:

* Eriksson seeks extra week with his players
* Eriksson upbeat despite loss
* Soccer Shows Friendly Side on International Night
* Big guns stunned on night of surprises
* Berti left searching for answers
* Euro 2004 Group 1
* Euro 2004 Group 6
* Georgia is now on Kerr’s mind
* Eriksson’s failed experiment
* Tomas Rosicky again named Czech Footballer of the Year
* Hughes shows faith in keeper
* Chelsea keep their noses clean
* Amateurs pitch in against Vogts
* Eriksson to retain teen stars
* Roy’s redemption was always a non-runner
* Old Firm lend support to Vogts
* World club competition opposed
* UEFA EURO 2008™ – News
* England’s Upton Park shambles

Eriksson seeks extra week with his players
Telegraph.co.uk – Feb 15, 2003
His chances of persuading the leading clubs to co-operate with this proposal look to be as unpromising, however, as the summit meeting scheduled to seek a solution to the corrosive problem of releasing players for friendly internationals. For a start, bringing the 2003-04 season forward by a week is not even on the agenda for discussion next month when the England coach, together with Football Association support, is due to meet the chairman of the Premier League, Dave Richards, and the managers of the clubs who supply most of his players. And, given the complexity of an English fixture list these days, one should have thought speed was of the essence here. But Eriksson continues to live in hope. “What I’m asking for at the moment, said the England coach after… “What I want to do is qualify for Euro 2004,” he said with discernible animation, “and I’m sure we will do that. I have never had any doubts about it, even though we lost today [against Australia] and had a draw with Macedonia at home [last October]. I understand the fans are not happy losing against Australia and drawing against Macedonia. But I think when it comes to the end, England will do well. By that, I mean qualifying and doing well in the big tournaments.

Eriksson upbeat despite loss
BBC News – Feb 13, 2003
I don’t think it will affect morale at all,” he said after the disappointing loss. “I think the result was bad, but the performance was not as bad as the result showed. ”

“I think the boys did very well in the second half. You could see there was a lot of talent out there… “For the first, a free kick came in and we lost the marking and the second was a classic counter-attack – we lost the ball in midfield and the organisation was not good. ”

But Eriksson was adamant that his team’s confidence would remain undamaged, despite a poor sequence of home results that also included a draw with Macedonia. England resume their Euro 2004 campaign when they travel to Liechtenstein on 29 March and then host Group Seven leaders Turkey on 2 April. “Nobody likes to lose a football game,” said Eriksson. “But let’s see what’s happening in one and a half month’s time. I’m sure that we can do very well against Liechtenstein and Turkey.

Soccer Shows Friendly Side on International Night
This Day – This Day (subscription) – Feb 12, 2003
The most intriguing of more than 30 friendlies taking place around the globe is in Guangzhou where world champions Brazil will field a full-strength side against China in their first meeting since Brazil’s 4-0 win at the World Cup last June. But the game is not without controversy and emphasises again the difficulty of fitting high profile friendlies into the crowded soccer calendar. Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is upset his midfielder Gilberto Silva is travelling some 8,000 miles from London — although tens of thousands of Chinese fans are delighted to see him and his other high-profile team mates such as Ronaldo. Just over a year ago Wenger was also upset as his French players had to travel to Australia in mid-season for a friendly, but they do not have to travel too far this week — just 300kms to Paris to play the Czech Republic. France coach Jacques Santini said on Tuesday that goalkeeper Ulrich Rame will play after Fabian Barthez and Gregory Coupet were ruled out with injuries. It will be Rame’s first appearance for France since Santini took over… Pires, who missed the World Cup because of injury, will be playing his first international for a year and said on Tuesday: “I’m just happy to be back and aiming to be a first choice player again. ”
Captain Marcel Desailly will earn his 103rd cap equalling Didier Deschamps French record. Italy, who face Euro 2004 hosts Portugal in Genoa, will be without coach Giovanni Trapattoni’s entire first-choice frontline, with Christian Vieri, Alessandro Del Piero and Francesco Totti all missing with injuries. The losses though, allow Trapattoni to take a look at some new faces ahead of March’s Euro 2004 qualifier against Finland — Argentine-born winger Mauro Camoranesi of Juventus is set to make his debut on the right flank and Perugia’s in-form striker Fabrizio Miccoli and Lazio forward Bernardo Corradi will also be given first run-outs for the Azzurri. Euro 2004 hosts Portugal have no such concerns about qualification but the game opens a new era with Luiz Felipe Scolari, coach of the World Cup winning Brazilian side, taking charge for the first time. Scolari has lost Porto midfielder Costinha to injury but is expected to start with Real Madrid’s Luis Figo and AC Milan’s Rui Costa in midfield
Spain coach Inaki Saez wants to see a sharper edge from his attack when they take on a weakened Germany in Palma de Mallorca. Saez’s side are unbeaten in five games since the former under-21 coach stepped up to the top job following a painful World Cup defeat to South Korea — a result that denied the Spanish a date with the Germans in the semi-finals.

Big guns stunned on night of surprises
Independent Online – Feb 13, 2003
Although England coach Sven-Goran Eriksson experimented by playing two completely different line-ups in the first and second halves, Australia were better for most of the 90 minutes and thoroughly deserved their first-ever soccer victory over England. England were not the only big guns to suffer on a day of surprises in more than 30 internationals around the globe. ‘Today we showed the rest of the world that soccer can be played in Israel’Other former World Cup winners France, Argentina and Germany all lost, while current world champions Brazil were held to a 0-0 draw in China. Italy bucked the trend with a 1-0 victory over Portugal in Genoa… Italy scored a morale-boosting success over Euro 2004 hosts Portugal in Genoa with a 62nd-minute goal by debutant Bernardo Corradi while the Netherlands beat Argentina 1-0 in Amsterdam with a stunning late strike from substitute Giovanni Van Bronckhorst. Elsewhere Ireland beat Scotland 2-0 in Glasgow in their first game under new manager Brian Kerr and Switzerland were the biggest winners anywhere, crushing Slovenia 5-1 in Ljubliana. There were different degrees of success too for Azerbaijan, Israel, and Tunisia. In the night’s only Euro 2004 qualifier, Azerbaijan picked up the first point of their Group Nine qualifying campaign with a 2-2 draw against Serbia and Montenegro, playing under their new name for the first time since dropping their old identity of Yugoslavia. Israel, playing at home for the first time since October 2001 because of restrictions imposed by Uefa in view of the political tension in the Middle East, beat Armenia 2-0 in a Tel Aviv friendly.

Berti left searching for answers
Edinburgh Evening News – Feb 13, 2003
Vogts has admitted in the past that Ferguson and Lambert have failed to produce the goods, on this occasion he was reduced to mumbling something about “special training” ahead of the crunch Euro 2004 qualifier with Iceland next month. Having directed a much-publicised spat at new Dundee United boss Ian McCall for choosing Alan Combe ahead of Gallacher, Vogts’ own decision to pick Sullivan, who hasn’t played for his club this season because of a broken thumb, also came into question. Sullivan’s lack of activity showed, not only with that poor punch but a sliced clearance, all-in-all he had a pretty miserable 45 minutes on the pitch before the pre-arranged switch with Gallacher was completed. Vogts, though, refused to blame Sullivan. He said: “We lost the team together, Neil is a good goalkeeper and it was not his fault we lost the game. ” Similarly, Vogts refused to blame the atrocious Hampden pitch – it was so bad Stevie Crawford continually lost his footing as he attempted to free himself of the shackles put on him by Gary Breen and John O’Shea. So what was to blame? Vogts said: “Ireland played like they were the home team with a lot of confidence.

Euro 2004 Group 1
BBC News – Feb 13, 2003
They also qualified for this year’s World Cup finals as champions but failed to qualify from their group and subsequently asked their coach Roger Lemerre. Jacques Santini is the new man in charge. Despite winning Euro 2000, France did not have an easy job of progressing to the finals in Belgium and Holland. Indeed les bleus had to wait until the final day of the qualifying group stage to make sure of their presence as they struggled to beat Iceland at home 3-2. Group 1 fixtures

2002

Sept 7: Slovenia v Malta, Cyprus v France

Oct 12: France v Slovenia, Malta v Israel

Oct 16: Israel v Cyprus, Malta v France

Nov 20: Cyprus v Malta

2003

Mar 29: Cyprus v Israel, France v Malta

Apr 2: Slovenia v Cyprus, Israel v France

Apr 30: Malta v Slovenia

June 7: Israel v Slovenia, Malta v Cyprus

Sept 6: France v Cyprus, Slovenia v Israel

Sept 10: Israel v Malta, Slovenia v France

Oct 11: Cyprus v Slovenia, France v Israel

The nucleus of the side which won France ’98 and Euro 2000 remains in place, with Arsenal midfielder Patrick Viera’s worldwide reputation growing daily and club team-mate Thierry Henry in devastating form in attack. Slovenia
Coach: Bojan Prasnikar
Former Sampdoria midfielder Srecko Katanec guided his nation to three successive major tournaments during his four-year reign in charge. But he decided to step down from his role following a public falling out with Slovenian playmaker Zlatko Zahovic during the World Cup.

Euro 2004 Group 6
BBC News – Feb 13, 2003
Spain
Coach: Inaki Saez
Famed for under-achieving, Spain will be hoping to finally shine in Portugal. Surprisingly beaten to the hosting vote by their near-neighbours, Spain will want to make sure they do not miss out on qualifying. But then, qualifying has never been their problem. Group 6 fixtures

2002

Sept 7: Greece v Spain, Armenia v Ukraine

Oct 12: Spain v N Ireland, Ukraine v Greece

Oct 16: Greece v Armenia, N Ireland v Ukraine

2003

Mar 29: Armenia v N Ireland, Ukraine v Spain

Apr 2: N Ireland v Greece, Spain v Armenia

June 7: Spain v Greece, Ukraine v Armenia

June 11: N Ireland v Spain, Greece v Ukraine

Sept 6: Armenia v Greece, Ukraine v N Ireland

Sept 10: N Ireland v Armenia, Spain v Ukraine

Oct 11: Greece v N Ireland, Armenia v Spain

Camacho undoubtedly has one of Europe’s most talented squads at his disposal but failed to get the required results at the World Cup and has since resigned. Newly appointed coach Inaki Saez will be looking to the likes of Raul and Luis Enrique to help bring home Spain’s first major honour since they won the European Nations Cup in 1968. Ukraine
Coach: Leonid Buryak
After three consecutive play-off heartbreaks, Ukraine are looking for a change of luck this time round.

Georgia is now on Kerr’s mind
Telegraph.co.uk – Feb 13, 2003
He is enjoying the adulation coming his way after a satisfying few days in Scotland although the suspicion is that the size of the job has now come home to him, not least the huge media demands. While not wishing to pour cold water on Kerr’s promising start, the reality is that he picked the same team McCarthy would probably have chosen had he not been hounded out of office by Keane sympathisers who are now turning on the player they believed more crucial to Ireland than the former manager. McCarthy was constantly criticised for standing by Kevin Kilbane and the irony of the Sunderland winger scoring the first goal of the Kerr era would not have been lost on his predecessor. “The Roy Keane issue is behind us now,” said Kerr… He is enjoying the adulation coming his way after a satisfying few days in Scotland although the suspicion is that the size of the job has now come home to him, not least the huge media demands. While not wishing to pour cold water on Kerr’s promising start, the reality is that he picked the same team McCarthy would probably have chosen had he not been hounded out of office by Keane sympathisers who are now turning on the player they believed more crucial to Ireland than the former manager. McCarthy was constantly criticised for standing by Kevin Kilbane and the irony of the Sunderland winger scoring the first goal of the Kerr era would not have been lost on his predecessor. “The Roy Keane issue is behind us now,” said Kerr. “It’s early days yet but this is a good result in the build-up to the two big games ahead. ” Kerr, it seems, now has Georgia rather than Keane on his mind.

Eriksson’s failed experiment
BBC News – Feb 12, 2003
Everton’s brilliant teenager can hold his head up high, as can Jenas and Jeffers. They all made a case for further inclusion – but what of the forgotten men of the Eriksson experiment?

Will Scott Parker, Sean Davis and Matthew Upson ever grace an England squad again?

On this evidence, they may not care. Eriksson needs big wins quickly in the forthcoming Euro 2004 qualifiers against Liechtenstein and Turkey. It was an ominous signal that the odds on Eriksson not being in his job at the end of this year were cut from to 3-1 to 2-1 as the final whistle blew. Eriksson’s next move needs to be more successful than this ill-fated manouevre. Otherwise he may be seen in Spain more than Soho Square in the not too distant future… They all made a case for further inclusion – but what of the forgotten men of the Eriksson experiment?

Will Scott Parker, Sean Davis and Matthew Upson ever grace an England squad again?

On this evidence, they may not care. Eriksson needs big wins quickly in the forthcoming Euro 2004 qualifiers against Liechtenstein and Turkey. It was an ominous signal that the odds on Eriksson not being in his job at the end of this year were cut from to 3-1 to 2-1 as the final whistle blew. Eriksson’s next move needs to be more successful than this ill-fated manouevre. Otherwise he may be seen in Spain more than Soho Square in the not too distant future.

Tomas Rosicky again named Czech Footballer of the Year
radio.cz – Feb 13, 2003
National team coach KarelBrueckner was again named Manager of the Year, Sparta’s Tomas Huebschmannwas Best Young Player and former international captain Jiri Nemec, who isnow 36, was named Personality of the League. Getting back to boy-wonderTomas Rosicky, he had this to say when asked what he wished for Czechfootball. "Well, I’ve really got my fingers crossed for us in the Euro 2004qualifiers, because we have a really good team and it’d be a pity if wehad to watch the championships on television. " Night to remember as Czechs beat France 2:0 in away friendly… Fingers crossed theycan maintain that form in the Euro qualifiers. Czech football league resumes this weekend after winter breakThe Czech domestic league kicks off again after the winter break thiscoming weekend, when the biggest tie will be third-placed Teplice againstleaders Sparta Prague. 2004 ice hockey World Championships can be held in Pardubice, says FaselThe dispute over the building of a new arena in Prague for the 2004 WorldChampionships may not mean disaster for the Czech organisers after all. The head of the International Ice Hockey Federation Rene Fasel said onTuesday that if the worst came to the worst the arena in Pardubice couldbe used instead. Extraliga leaders Pardubice deprived of three points for drug useExtraliga leaders Pardubice have been deprived of three points afterdefender Michael Vyhlidal was found to have taken performance-enhancingdrugs before a game against Slavia. Pardubice still have a 10-point lead,however. Zahrobska comes in top ten in world skiing event day before 18thbirthdayThe great hope of Czech downhill skiing Sarka Zahrobska came ninth in thecombination at the world alpine skiing championships in St Moritz onMonday, one day before her 18th birthday.

Hughes shows faith in keeper
BBC News – Feb 13, 2003
The Southampton player has not appeared in the Premiership since October after the signing of Finnish international Antti Niemi. That has left Jones with worries about his Wales future, as they approach next month’s friendly with Bosnia and the crunch Euro 2004 qualifiers against Azerbaijan and Yugoslavia in March… The Southampton player has not appeared in the Premiership since October after the signing of Finnish international Antti Niemi. That has left Jones with worries about his Wales future, as they approach next month’s friendly with Bosnia and the crunch Euro 2004 qualifiers against Azerbaijan and Yugoslavia in March. Now Hughes, after naming a 28-man squad for the 12 February clash with Bosnia in Cardiff, said: “Paul understands it would be better for him, and for me, if he was playing first-team football.

Chelsea keep their noses clean
Telegraph.co.uk – Feb 12, 2003
Through the physical nature of their trade, centre-halves like Gallas and Terry are liable to picking up bookings. Gallas’s immaculate interceptions, using his pace to get him out of trouble, and sangfroid with opponents and officials alike means the French international has yet to be cautioned in 14 games this term. Terry, who tends to slide into tackles more and so risks catching a flying forward, has four yellows in 18 games – nearly seven hours elapse between Terry’s bookings… Through the physical nature of their trade, centre-halves like Gallas and Terry are liable to picking up bookings. Gallas’s immaculate interceptions, using his pace to get him out of trouble, and sangfroid with opponents and officials alike means the French international has yet to be cautioned in 14 games this term. Terry, who tends to slide into tackles more and so risks catching a flying forward, has four yellows in 18 games – nearly seven hours elapse between Terry’s bookings. At left-back, the cocky Wayne Bridge may be unpopular with the media but referees love him and he has yet to be booked in 18 appearances. Duff has still to have his name taken, Cole had not erred until Sunday while Lampard has been booked only twice in 21 games, impressive for such a tireless toiler in the boiler-room. Even Makelele, described by Lampard as Chelsea’s “insurance policy” in front of the back-four, has only two bookings in 16 appearances.

Amateurs pitch in against Vogts
BBC News – Feb 13, 2003
Vogts is concerned about the state of the Hampden Park pitch ahead of next
month’s Euro 2004 qualifier with Iceland. Vogts would love the Spiders to relocate elsewhere, but club secretary Alister
Mackay insisted that would not happen… Vogts would love the Spiders to relocate elsewhere, but club secretary Alister
Mackay insisted that would not happen. Vogts became the latest to add his voice to the growing chorus of criticism concerning the pitch as he prepared for Wednesday’s friendly against Republic of Ireland.

Eriksson to retain teen stars
The Age – Feb 15, 2003
Rooney, 17, and Jenas, 19, made their England debuts in the second half of England’s 3-1 loss to Australia in Wednesday night’s friendly at Upton Park. Manager Sven-Goran Eriksson, who brought on a completely new team in the second half against Australia, said the pair would be part of the squad for England’s Euro 2004 qualifiers against Liechtenstein and Turkey next month. Eriksson said Rooney was the most mature 17-year-old player he had coached – including Roberto Baggio and Rui Costa. Admitting that he is now under pressure to pick the Everton striker again, the Swede said: “I’m not sure whether he’s ready or not, but you couldn’t see it was his first international game. “Should his age go against him for a qualifying game? If his behaviour is always like this, then no. He’s much more mature than that and doesn’t seem to be worried about what is going on around him… It’s difficult to make that kind of comparison but Rooney’s first touch is top-class. “To come into a club is one thing, to come into a national team is much bigger. ” Eriksson insisted he would not rethink his policy of asking England players to play for no more than 45 minutes in friendlies. The English Football Association is attempting to broker a resolution to resolve the club-country row. Acting FA chief executive David Davies will chair a meeting next month with Eriksson, leading club managers and the Premier League to look for some sort of compromise.

Roy’s redemption was always a non-runner
Irish Independent – Feb 16, 2003
Even with a seat in Super Executive Class and all the extras. Even on his own private plane. And he wouldn’t be human at all if he didn’t want the sort of redemption that was still available to him until last Tuesday: a possible Champions League final at Old Trafford in May, to make up for the one he missed; and half-a-dozen matches in which he might have driven Ireland to Euro 2004, and left the stage not just gracefully, but a god. It was a comic-book fantasy and it was there for him. In the last frame, Roy saves the world. But there is too much light and joy in that ending, it wouldn’t be right for this tale of madness and blackguardism.

Old Firm lend support to Vogts
Telegraph.co.uk – Feb 14, 2003
Alex McLeish, the Rangers manager, said: “It is a difficult job for Berti Vogts at the moment because Scotland are in transition. The time to judge is when the final places are known in the Euro 2004 qualifying section. “McLeish’s comments were echoed by Martin O’Neill of Celtic, who said: “It’s a building process and I don’t think that Berti Vogts for a moment thought this would be an easy job – if he did, somebody misinformed him. Be that as it may, there was another irony for Vogts to ponder yesterday as Barry Ferguson collected his player of the month award for January in recognition of his productive form for Rangers, as opposed to his almost anonymous appearance in the Scottish midfield at Hampden… However, O’Neill was happy to testify yesterday that there was no feud between him and the forward. How should I describe him? Well, he’s not the first player to have made his point of view known in my time as a manager, but what’s done is done and we have to get on with the job,” O’Neill said. Rangers also have a first choice absentee in Neil McCann, who picked up an injury playing for Scotland but Peter Lovenkrands and Steven Thompson have both been judged fit to make their comebacks against Hearts, for whom Steven Pressley will feature, having overcome the stomach bug which kept him out of the Scotland side. Stephane Mahe, too, may return, despite recent ankle ligament damage but Phil Stamp is definitely out with of a damaged shoulder. Aberdeen, who sustained another alarming defeat by Partick Thistle at Pittodrie last week, will attempt to redeem themselves at home against Dundee United, who have become a lively commodity under Ian McCall. As Steve Paterson shuffles his Aberdeen pack there will be starts for Leigh Hinds and Michael Hart, while Eric Delomeaux is fit again and will also be in at the kick off, although Jamie McAllister is out through suspension.

World club competition opposed
uefa.comUEFA.com – Feb 12, 2003
Nyon meetingThe clubs voiced their opinion at a two-day plenary meeting in Nyon, western Switzerland, of the European Club Forum, a 102-club body set up to reinforce dialogue between UEFA and European clubs on issues of mutual benefit. Unacceptable burden”Virtually everyone is 100 per cent of the opinion that there should not be a future for the club world championship and the Confederations’ Cup,” said Arsenal FC vice-chairman David Dein, who added that such competitions placed an unacceptable burden on players, and that clubs might even withhold players from the Confederations’ Cup in France this summer. Feelings strengthened”The clubs have independently let [FIFA] know their feelings,” said Manchester United FC chief executive Peter Kenyon. “And these [feelings] have been further strengthened in the plenary meeting that has taken place in the past two days. ” Gruelling seasonSpeaking about this year’s Confederations’ Cup in June, which involves national teams that have excelled in world and continental championships, Dein said: “At the end of the season after the players have had a gruelling domestic championship and European competitions, [Arsenal] could have our Brazilian and French players going to France from approximately 8 June to 29 June. Time to recover”Pre-season training commences on 7 July,” he continued… “It gives the players no chance to recover – they are not wind-up toys, they are professional, finely-tuned athletes. They need time to recover. ” No sporting reasonAC Milan organising director Umberto Gandini added: “It is to the detriment of the clubs and players who have to prepare for an early start to the season because of [UEFA] EURO 2004 next year. We do not see any sporting reason why the competition should be played. ” Club compensationThe topic of compensation for clubs for their players’ national-team duty was also discussed in Nyon. The clubs say that they will approach both UEFA and FIFA about the possibility of clubs being reimbursed for their players’ salaries during the final stages of international tournaments, and will raise the question of associations insuring players on national-team duty. ‘Silver Goal’A proposal has been made to introduce the so-called ‘silver goal’ rule in the knockout stages of all UEFA competitions from next season.

UEFA EURO 2008™ – News
uefa.comUEFA.com – Feb 12, 2003
The Czechs took this match like a qualifying game and gave everything. We were not able to face up to such a challenge. ©Reuters 1998-2006. All rights reserved.

England’s Upton Park shambles
go.com – Feb 13, 2003
only to discover that the barman was a deservedly gloating Aussie. England had thrown two different sides at Australia, who therefore had a ready made excuse in case of defeat, and not even the faint silver-plated lining of Rooney and Jenas’ debut performances could hide England’s glaringly obvious deficiencies. It may have been 119 days since England’s previous match but it was Australia’s first full match for 15 months, when they lost a World Cup qualifying play-off against Uruguay. The shambolic defeat casts a lingering gloom over England’s preparations for the Euro 2004 qualifying double bill, on March 29 and April 2, and leaves more questions than answers. The match can be dismissed as a friendly, with two separate teams playing in either half, but since England’s World Cup quarter-final exit at the hands of Brazil the teams’ results have been in steady decline. A less than convincing 2-1 Euro 2004 qualifying win away to Slovakia was followed by a shock 2-2 draw with lowly Macedonia, ranked 86th in the world, at Southampton’s St Mary’s Stadium and that dire result was superceded by Wednesday’s debacle – both the result and the ‘shame of two halves’ experiment… The shambolic defeat casts a lingering gloom over England’s preparations for the Euro 2004 qualifying double bill, on March 29 and April 2, and leaves more questions than answers. The match can be dismissed as a friendly, with two separate teams playing in either half, but since England’s World Cup quarter-final exit at the hands of Brazil the teams’ results have been in steady decline. A less than convincing 2-1 Euro 2004 qualifying win away to Slovakia was followed by a shock 2-2 draw with lowly Macedonia, ranked 86th in the world, at Southampton’s St Mary’s Stadium and that dire result was superceded by Wednesday’s debacle – both the result and the ‘shame of two halves’ experiment. It’s a sad day for English football. The tired old excuses of ‘we didn’t play as well as we know we can’ or ‘we know we can play better’ are wearing thin. Time to prove those claims. Oh, and congratulations to Australia, a team that did their country proud.

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