Euro 2012 – Ukraine and Poland

December 2, 2003

BBC SPORT | Football | Internationals | Euro 2004 analysis

Filed under: EURO 2004 — Ivan @ 11:44 am

The News Review:

* BBC SPORT | Football | Eriksson will welcome Euro draw
* Germans not too pleased with Euro-draw
* Marketing blitz set to envelop Euro 2004
* BBC SPORT | Football | Internationals | Euro 2004 analysis
* Chelsea deny Eriksson link
* The back pages
* All the latest talk from Sunday’s newspapers
* Wales deserve record
* SOCCER : Their enemies known, Europe coaches slyly set the traps
* BBC SPORT | Football | My Club | Man Utd | FA sets date for Rio…
* Clubs to make pay demand
* Fine start for Kerr is frustrating for Vogts
* Rugby inspiration for Beckham
* Man Utd pair fined
* Jamie not afraid to knock out old friends
* Eriksson’s England open to ridicule
* Chelsea beats Man Utd to lead Premier League
* Injury irks Schmeichel and clouds his future
* That finishing Dutch

BBC SPORT | Football | Eriksson will welcome Euro draw
BBC News – Nov 30, 2003
The first game will obviously be incredibly tough because France are a great team – but even if England come out with a draw they can go forward with renewed confidence. If they do that and then do not progress after games against Croatia and Switzerland, then they are clearly not good enough to win Euro 2004 anyway. After saying England and Eriksson will be happy with the draw, it does not mean they will simply ease their way through if they perform against the French. Switzerland and Croatia are decent sides. Switzerland have got some technically gifted and pacy players, while Croatia are good going forward even if they are not quite as impressive going in the other direction.

Germans not too pleased with Euro-draw
Expatica – Dec 1, 2003
Captain Oliver Kahn also warned the other group D team, Latvia, should not be underestimated. “This is a very, very tough group. And there is no reason to underestimate Latvia, either,” insisted goalkeeper Kahn. Coach Rudi Voeller agreed: “There is no reason to celebrate… Captain Oliver Kahn also warned the other group D team, Latvia, should not be underestimated. “This is a very, very tough group. And there is no reason to underestimate Latvia, either,” insisted goalkeeper Kahn. Coach Rudi Voeller agreed: “There is no reason to celebrate.

Marketing blitz set to envelop Euro 2004
Taipei Times – Dec 2, 2003
What about a women’s watch or a China dish set for the 2004 European Championship?
With the growing popularity of European soccer around the globe, the “official licensed products” of UEFA’s European Championship in Portugal next year is targeting a rapidly expanding market. Not only are products for the Europe-limited event now sold worldwide, marketeers also want to sell their wares to more than just the average soccer fan. It ranges from the obvious, such as soccer balls, to the surprising, such as women’s watches. They will be sold anywhere from the airport shop in Lisbon, the hub of the Euro 2004 tournament, to stores as far away as Thailand and Brazil. “It is a great marketing opportunity,” UEFA Chief Executive Gerhard Aigner said in an interview… Not only are products for the Europe-limited event now sold worldwide, marketeers also want to sell their wares to more than just the average soccer fan. It ranges from the obvious, such as soccer balls, to the surprising, such as women’s watches. They will be sold anywhere from the airport shop in Lisbon, the hub of the Euro 2004 tournament, to stores as far away as Thailand and Brazil. “It is a great marketing opportunity,” UEFA Chief Executive Gerhard Aigner said in an interview. “Around the world, people love the players who play in the European leagues. Thanks to the new media, the Internet, they can follow our games better. Yes, it is spreading across the globe.

BBC SPORT | Football | Internationals | Euro 2004 analysis
BBC News – Nov 30, 2003
If both sides can steer clear of injuries to key players, they can be regarded as potential champions. Switzerland have the brilliance of Basle’s Hakan Yakin to call on, but coach Kobi Kuhn’s side are unlikely to last beyond the first phase. Croatia needed a play-off win against Slovenia to reach Euro 2004 and the golden era of the nation’s football has passed. VERDICT: France and England to lead the way. GROUP C

Giovanni Trapattoni’s Italy will regard themselves as firm favourites to win this group and move towards their ultimate aim of wiping away the bitter memories of the Euro 2000 final defeat to France on the golden goal. Trapatonni remains one of the world’s shrewdest coaches, and despite struggling in their qualifying group, they can never be discounted and Christian Vieri remains a force. The other qualifying place is likely to develop into a Scandinavian battle between Sweden and Denmark… VERDICT: Italy and Sweden to clinch the top two places. GROUP D

Latvia may have sprung a surprise by beating Turkey in the play-offs, but they can be struck from the record as possible qualifiers from this fiercely competitive group. Old enemies Holland and Germany collide, not as the superpowers they were, but still among the favourites. Holland showed their two faces in the play-off against Scotland, dispirited in defeat at Hampden Park but devastating in a 6-0 win in Amsterdam. But those searching for dark horses are looking in the direction of the seeded Czech Republic, who flew through the qualifiers and sent Holland into the play-offs. Pavel Nedved takes his place in the elite of Europe, while Borussia Dortmund duo Tomas Rosicky and Jan Koller, plus Liverpool’s Milan Baros, provide the cutting edge. VERDICT: Holland and Germany to edge out the Czech Republic.

Chelsea deny Eriksson link
BBC News – Dec 1, 2003
“If there was anything in it, I’d know about it. “It’s just the same old story. I think it was written to tie in with the Euro 2004 draw. ”

Ranieri guided Chelsea to a 1-0 win over Manchester United on Sunday which took them to the top of the table. And Smith said that billionaire owner Roman Abramovich was delighted with the way Ranieri was managing his expensively-assembled side. “How can you criticise Claudio?” demanded Smith. “We are top of the league and through to the last 16 of the Champions League.

The back pages
BBC News – Nov 30, 2003
Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich is primed to unleash another ?18m from his seemingly bottom-less pockets to bring Eriksson to Stamford Bridge. Joe Melling writes: “Abramovich’s desire to secure Eriksson’s services now dovetails with the Swede’s determination to step down as coach of the national team. ”

The Sunday Mirror looks at the whole debacle from a completely different angle, focusing on an FA rift instead. FA chief excecutive Mark Palios reportedly faces a rift within the FA over the new contract because board members were not consulted over the new deal.

All the latest talk from Sunday’s newspapers
BBC News – Nov 30, 2003
The lure of a ?18m contract seems to have done the trick. (Mail on Sunday)

But Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich is not getting everything his own way. Bayern Munich have told Stamford Bridge officials that playmaker Michael Ballack is not for sale at any price… The lure of a ?18m contract seems to have done the trick. (Mail on Sunday)

But Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich is not getting everything his own way. Bayern Munich have told Stamford Bridge officials that playmaker Michael Ballack is not for sale at any price.

Wales deserve record
Telegraph.co.uk – Dec 2, 2003
Wales had received an unexpected bonus shortly before kick-off with the news that Serbia & Montenegro, formerly Yugoslavia, had been held to a 2-2 home draw by Azerbaijan. It was a massive boost; the Serbians had the chance with their game in hand to move to within two points of Euro 2004 Group Nine leaders Wales but the surprise draw means that the Principality still lead their qualifying group by four points, with a double header against Azerbaijan and Serbia in the spring. Hughes made two omissions, one expected, another a surprise. Ryan Giggs’s damaged calf had not healed sufficiently and the winger had returned to Manchester United for treatment… Hughes also gave Cardiff’s Rhys Weston his first start, with team-mate Robert Earnshaw effectively taking over from Giggs. Bosnia are joint bottom with Luxembourg in Euro 2004 qualifying Group Two after defeats to Romania and Norway but from the outset were no respecters of Wales’s impressive record. Weston was quickly offered a lesson in the difference between defending in the Second Division and internationals when he was outpaced by Galatasaray’s Elvir Baljic, who finished with a wonderful drive into the bottom corner. Wales equalised just three minutes later with Earnshaw, inspirational for his club this season, scoring his 28th goal of the season and his second for Wales in his fourth international. He turned superbly before finishing into the bottom corner from the edge of the area. In the 64th minute, Bosnia regained their lead when Wales’s defensive failings were again exposed.

SOCCER : Their enemies known, Europe coaches slyly set the traps
International Herald Tribune – Dec 2, 2003
This dilemma of getting leading players to the ball fit and fresh confronts most coaches; but the more gifted the players, the more they are burdened. The French wait on key players involved in clubs in England and Spain, the longest domestic leagues. Not until they report healthy in Clairefontaine for Euro 2004 preparation will Santini feel he controls the situation. But 10 days before the French travel on to Portugal, the team has an obligation to perform at Stade de France in a prestige friendly to commemorate the centenary of FIFA. France, the nation that inspired the founding of a world body, competes against Brazil, the most distinguished of world champions. Everyone, these days, competes too much, straining resources too often and too far. The French are the prime example of FIFA, UEFA and the clubs pushing their own tournaments to breaking point even before they begin.

BBC SPORT | Football | My Club | Man Utd | FA sets date for Rio…
BBC News – Dec 1, 2003

Since missing the drugs test Ferdinand has played for United in both the Premiership and the Champions League. However, he is not eligible to be selected to play for England, and missed the Euro 2004 qualifier against Turkey and the friendly against Denmark.

Clubs to make pay demand
Telegraph.co.uk – Dec 2, 2003
These have been further strengthened in the plenary meeting that has taken place in the past two days. “AC Milan organising director Umberto Gandini pointed out there was already an early start to next season. He said: “It is to the detriment of the clubs and players who have to prepare for an early start to the season because of Euro 2004 next year. We do not see any sporting reason why the competition should be played.

Fine start for Kerr is frustrating for Vogts
Telegraph.co.uk – Dec 2, 2003
Berti Vogts, as manager, clearly has much to do, not least with a tactical approach which was laboured and lack-lustre until Paul Devin led the possee of substitutes who added some spark to the display. Scotland’s Euro 2004 qualifying campaign restarts against Iceland in March. Ireland, missing their first-choice strike force of Damien Duff and Robbie Keane, had the confidence booster Kerr was looking for ahead of back-to-back Euro 2002 ties in Georgia and Albania. Steven Reid, the Millwall midfielder, was the pick of the bunch, but there were plenty of solid performances not least from Gary Breen, who had all but disappeared from the Premiership scene since joining West Ham United last summer… Berti Vogts, as manager, clearly has much to do, not least with a tactical approach which was laboured and lack-lustre until Paul Devin led the possee of substitutes who added some spark to the display. Scotland’s Euro 2004 qualifying campaign restarts against Iceland in March. Ireland, missing their first-choice strike force of Damien Duff and Robbie Keane, had the confidence booster Kerr was looking for ahead of back-to-back Euro 2002 ties in Georgia and Albania. Steven Reid, the Millwall midfielder, was the pick of the bunch, but there were plenty of solid performances not least from Gary Breen, who had all but disappeared from the Premiership scene since joining West Ham United last summer.

Rugby inspiration for Beckham
BBC News – Nov 30, 2003
“We fear no one – and we can win the tournament next summer. “We are good enough to win Euro 2004. I believe we can go all the way. We all have to believe that. “We’re not worried. I’m confident in our own ability.

Man Utd pair fined
BBC News – Dec 1, 2003
“Ryan Giggs for one has an exemplary disciplinary record. In 11 years in the Premiership, he has never been sent off, never been the subject of any disciplinary hearing and received only 16 yellow cards. “He would not get into any situation like that lightly. ”

Arsenal’s Lauren, Martin Keown and Ray Parlour all received bans and fines for their involvement in ugly scenes after the final whistle at Old Trafford. Ashley Cole was also fined, while Vieira was suspended and fined after being sent off for two yellow cards in the game. Giggs also faces a Uefa inquiry on 4 December into alleged use of an elbow during Wales’ Euro 2004 play-off with Russia in Moscow on 15 November… ”

Arsenal’s Lauren, Martin Keown and Ray Parlour all received bans and fines for their involvement in ugly scenes after the final whistle at Old Trafford. Ashley Cole was also fined, while Vieira was suspended and fined after being sent off for two yellow cards in the game. Giggs also faces a Uefa inquiry on 4 December into alleged use of an elbow during Wales’ Euro 2004 play-off with Russia in Moscow on 15 November.

Jamie not afraid to knock out old friends
Edinburgh Evening News – Dec 2, 2003
Tonight’s game will be played to a finish and, with a place in the semi-finals at stake, the 25-year-old wants the Lions to up the ante. He continued: “I wouldn’t say we’re going through a bad patch just now but equally we’re not playing too well either. “We’re not getting beat which is good from a defensive point of view but we’re not winning an awful lot either. “There’s a real incentive to beat Aberdeen, though, because we have the chance to get to the last four. “If we win it will keep our season going right through to February and give us something to look forward to. ” McAllister returned to the Livingston line-up for Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Dundee after a month on the sidelines with an ankle injury. His form before he picked up the knock had been steadily improving and he turned in another creditable display against the Dens Park side… ” McAllister returned to the Livingston line-up for Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Dundee after a month on the sidelines with an ankle injury. His form before he picked up the knock had been steadily improving and he turned in another creditable display against the Dens Park side. Scotland coach Berti Vogts has been keeping tabs on his form and an impressive performance for the Future Team against Germany put him in line for a place on the standby list for the Euro 2004 play-off against Holland. The injury denied him that opportunity but he retains ambitions of pulling on a Dark Blue jersey in the future and was yesterday named in the latest Future squad to face Turkey. He added: “I thought I was playing well before I got the injury and in terms of the Scotland thing it couldn’t have come at a worse time. “Fortunately, the way the fixtures worked out I only missed three games but it was pretty frustrating nevertheless. “I feel as if I played okay against Dundee, although I did tire a bit towards the end, so fingers crossed I can continue in the sort of form I was showing before I got injured.

Eriksson’s England open to ridicule
Telegraph.co.uk – Dec 2, 2003
Against Macedonia last October the normally military lines of Eriksson’s conservative formation dissolved into a comedy of troop displacement. What shocked the most seasoned observers was not David Seaman’s howler, but the shapelessness and confusion of a supposedly major power facing a minor eastern European republic at home. But back to that statistic: five wins in 17. Eriksson’s refusal to stand his ground in the face of over-protective club managers has come at a real and increasing cost. England have lost the winning mentality they acquired during the Swede’s first half-dozen games in charge. England get-togethers now resembled vast conventions of the young and extravagantly paid… Out came the young Turks, to warm up. The old Turks – the ones at the top of England’s Euro 2004 qualifying group – must have been splitting their sides down in Istanbul. Lest we forget, England face Turkey in Sunderland on April 2, after Liechtenstein five days earlier. If they lose on Wearside, England can start planning for the play-offs: that old anxiety of the English, back to haunt them just four games in. In that context, it beggars belief to see Eriksson treating his one and only preparatory match so casually. The fewer friendlies England play, the more important it becomes to foster the kind of aggression and confidence that seems to be sewn into Australian DNA.

Chelsea beats Man Utd to lead Premier League
SI.com – Nov 30, 2003
" Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson disputed the penalty call, saying Cole didn’t have possession and Keane touched the ball. "We feel we were a bit unlucky," Ferguson said. "You’ve not got a top referee today so these things can happen. " Ferguson dismissed being four points behind after only 14 of 38 games. "It’s always too early to tell at this stage. Once you get into February, March and April the games are really meaningful then. If we had lost this game in March, it would have been a major result for Chelsea… Eriksson dismisses latest Chelsea link; declines talk on England offer LISBON, Portugal (AP) — England coach Sven-Goran Eriksson on Sunday dismissed a report he had been offered an 18-million pound (US$29 million) four-year deal to take over at Chelsea. He also declined to talk about an extension to his current England contract. In Lisbon to discover that England had been drawn in the same Euro 2004 group as defending champion France, Eriksson joked about the latest report linking him with Chelsea. "How much? I think I should sign at once," the Swede said when he was told about the story. "No, I have not heard anything about that. " Eriksson, whose contract with England goes until the 2006 World Cup, has been linked with the job at Stamford Bridge since he had lunch with new Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich and the Russian’s agent three months ago. The former Benfica, Sampdoria and Lazio coach has also said he would like to return to club management when he ends his involvement with England.

Injury irks Schmeichel and clouds his future
Telegraph.co.uk – Dec 2, 2003
“Ireland coach Brian Kerr was very impressed in his talk with Roy Keane,” Ferguson said. “Roy is very disappointed with the decision he’s had to make and is disappointed not to be playing under Brian Kerr for the Republic of Ireland. “This is not a football decision but a medical issue. “After much deliberation, Roy has acted on medical advice from Manchester United to end his international career. “New coach Kerr believed Keane would resume his Ireland career following the player’s World Cup bust-up with Kerr’s predecessor, Mick McCarthy. However, Keane’s decision means that Kerr will be without the country’s best player as Ireland try to recover from their poor start to qualifying for Euro 2004. Ireland are second from bottom in Group 10 having lost their opening two games against Russia and Switzerland… “After much deliberation, Roy has acted on medical advice from Manchester United to end his international career. “New coach Kerr believed Keane would resume his Ireland career following the player’s World Cup bust-up with Kerr’s predecessor, Mick McCarthy. However, Keane’s decision means that Kerr will be without the country’s best player as Ireland try to recover from their poor start to qualifying for Euro 2004. Ireland are second from bottom in Group 10 having lost their opening two games against Russia and Switzerland. Their next matches are against Georgia on March 29 and Albania on April 2, both away from home. Ireland’s loss, though, is very much United’s gain as they seek an unprecedented quadruple bid for the Premiership title, FA Cup, Worthington Cup and Champions League this season. Keane follows the example of Newcastle United’s English striker Alan Shearer and Arsenal’s Dutchman Dennis Bergkamp in quitting the international scene early in order to prolong their club careers.

That finishing Dutch
The Observer – Nov 30, 2003
‘ The anecdote may have a fanciful ring, but there is little doubt that, slowly and carefully, Van Nistelrooy has matured into the most prolific goalscorer in Europe. What makes his progress so intriguing is that goalscoring is the neglected art of football. Not since Gary Lineker ruminated on ‘attacking the space’ has anyone in the game spoken up for the secret craft of putting the ball in the net. When I met him in October, Van Nistelrooy was also reluctant to discuss the issue. ‘When I score, it’s happened,’ he explained with faultless logic. ‘It’s not that you think I’m going to do this. You see the goalkeeper there, the defender there, then bang, that’s it… Until he scored against Rangers, in the Champions League on 4 November, he went over nine hours without finding the net in open play – his longest goalless period in England. It followed a strange September. At the beginning of the month he was substituted in Holland’s crucial Euro 2004 qualifier against the Czech Republic. He kicked a water bottle in protest and called Advocaat lafaard , Dutch for ‘coward’. It was an uncharacteristic outburst from a player known in his homeland for his quiet good manners. Van Nistelrooy apologised afterwards, but the damage was done. A few days later, he scored a brace against Charlton.

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