Euro 2012 – Ukraine and Poland

April 4, 2005

World Cup 2006 | Barthez in midst of Israeli storm |

Filed under: EURO 2008 — Ivan @ 2:11 pm

The News Review:

* Tough task for returning Toshack
* BBC SPORT | Football | Internationals | Toshack stock rises despite…
* Croke Park at the crossroads
* World Cup 2006 | Barthez in midst of Israeli storm |
* BBC SPORT | Football | Internationals | Speed resisting Wales…
* SOCCER: Sanchez demands strong finish
* UEFA European U-17 C’Ship: Confident Austria aiming high

Tough task for returning Toshack – Mar 27, 2005
Now, with the greatest respect, he has at his disposal Carl Fletcher, Sam Ricketts and Danny Gabbidon. Toshack has been away such a long time that when trying to express himself in English, he has to say “in this country you say…” At times one expects him to speak Euskara – the ancient language of the Basques – but his roots are betrayed by an accent that remains richly South Wales. He is determined to qualify Wales for either Euro 2008 or the 2010 World Cup finals but, on Saturday, the few promising signs were hardly strong enough to hint at any success. Wales had defended resiliently but after a substitution that Toshack later accepted was a mistake, with Robert Earnshaw replacing the influential Simon Davies, they crumbled. The change seemed to suck the lifeblood out of Wales and two goals in the final eight minutes, aided by individual errors, earned the Austrians the win they just about deserved. After Ryan Giggs, captain on his 50th appearance, lost the ball, Ivica Vastic scored the first and then after Gabbidon and Robert Page failed to clear, Martin Stranzl added a second. As Toshack flies to Vienna today, for the Wednesday return fixture, he is considering changes… From start to finish, if we are honest with ourselves, I feel they were probably a little bit stronger than us. “I’ll accept a large percentage of responsibility for the result,” added Toshack. “The substitution was maybe not very intelligent, with all due respect to the people involved. Very often you go to try and win it and what in theory looks right is not right.

BBC SPORT | Football | Internationals | Toshack stock rises despite…
BBC News – Mar 31, 2005
“I saw some real, real exciting performances from some of the Wales players in Vienna. ”

With qualification gone, the remaining World Cup group games will now be used as preparation for the Euro 2008 campaign. It remains certain that only a win will prove that real progress is being made – and quieten Toshack’s doubters for at least a while. But the next competitive match is September’s home tie with England and it is almost a grace game for Toshack. No one will expect Wales to win; anything better than the strangely anaemic performance in last October’s 2-0 loss at Old Trafford will be viewed as a positive step; victory might even see Toshack deified.

Croke Park at the crossroads – Mar 30, 2005
” There may be no strings attached but the GAA president, who is in favour of Rule 42 being deleted, is realistic enough to know there will have to be a compromise for further government funding. Kelly said: “If the Irish teams play abroad and then we go to the government looking for money, what reaction do you think there will be?” If the Football Association of Ireland and the Irish Rugby Football Union have to play home games in England the loss of revenue to Ireland will run into millions of pounds plus the disadvantage of playing on neutral territory. The FAI would look at Anfield or Celtic Park for their Euro 2008 qualifying ties but would face fixture complications as they would not be able to play such games when England or Scotland are also at home.

World Cup 2006 | Barthez in midst of Israeli storm | – Mar 30, 2005

Barthez in midst of Israeli storm
March 30, 2005
Fabien Barthez, the veteran France goalkeeper, has found himself at the centre of a storm in Israel after expressing fears over his safety before departing for Tel-Aviv last week. The political situation in the Middle East has led to heightened tensions between Israel and France, who oppose the United States? favourable policy towards Israel. Against that backdrop, Barthez had declared that France should not have to visit Israel because of the security situation, and voiced concern over the safety of the players on their voyage to Tel-Aviv. Referring to Israel?s actions in the Palestinian region, the 73-times-capped former Manchester United man said last week: ?When I see all the suffering in the world, I don?t understand why they would want to play in Israel. I don?t like it at all. I am speaking as a father and not as a soccer player. ?
His words have led to suggestions that the Israeli crowd will protest during the playing of the French national anthem, ?La Marseillaise?, before the game this evening… Referring to Israel?s actions in the Palestinian region, the 73-times-capped former Manchester United man said last week: ?When I see all the suffering in the world, I don?t understand why they would want to play in Israel. I don?t like it at all. I am speaking as a father and not as a soccer player. ?
His words have led to suggestions that the Israeli crowd will protest during the playing of the French national anthem, ?La Marseillaise?, before the game this evening. Barthez, 33, is no stranger to controversy, but even by his standards the past few weeks have been incredibly contentious. He was criticised by the French sports minister Jean-Francois Lamour after denouncing the ailing state of the game in the modern era, and ? as if to underline his analysis ? faces a lengthy ban when he comes in front of a disciplinary committee next month, charged with spitting at a referee during a recent game between Olympique Marseilles and Moroccan team Wydad Casdablanca. Other World Cup headlines from March 30, 2005:.

BBC SPORT | Football | Internationals | Speed resisting Wales…
BBC News – Apr 4, 2005
Wales assistant coach Roy Evans has said that there was “two or three other players we’d like back”. However, even if Evans was referring to Speed, it appears the Bolton man is determined to keep his energies for the Reebok Stadium. Wales lost both last week’s World Cup qualifying matches against Austria and boss John Toshack is now targeting the build-up for the Euro 2008 qualifying campaign.

SOCCER: Sanchez demands strong finish
U.TV – UTV – Mar 31, 2005
Northern Ireland boss Sanchez said: “Glorious failures are not what I want. They don`t interest me. “My aim is for Northern Ireland to have a really good chance of qualifying for a major final and to do that we need to get good results. “We won`t finish in the top two in the group now and even third is a big ask. “So we must target fourth and finish ahead of Wales and Azerbaijan… They then welcome Wales to Belfast on October 8 before wrapping up the campaign four days later against Austria. Sanchez said: “We will be going all out to beat Azerbaijan and Wales. “We must finish as high up the table as possible to improve our chances of getting good draws in Euro 2008 qualifiers. “Northern Ireland defended stoutly against Poland but a goal from Maciej Zurawski three minutes from time gave the home side the points. It meant the Irish were still hunting for a first competitive victory since October 2001 when they beat Malta. But Sanchez was particularly hurt to lose in Warsaw. “This was the hardest defeat I have suffered in my career,” he said.

UEFA European U-17 C’Ship: Confident Austria aiming high – Mar 26, 2005
“We are used to this now and we expect this again, maybe even a little more. There are some players who could very soon be in Austria’s senior team. ”

Kovlac impresses
Indeed, those that impress could yet play in UEFA EURO 2008? on home soil, including 16-year-old Veli Kovlac, who scored twice for SK Rapid Wien in January’s prestigious indoor Hallencup. “He is one of the best midfield players for his age with an eye for goal,” Gligorski said. Friendly defeat
Other prospects are defender Michael Madl, a veteran of last season’s team, and striker Marc Sand, 16, compared by the coach to “a young Toni Polster”. Despite a 3-1 defeat by the Netherlands in a recent friendly, Gligorski warned: “I am sure we will do better in the mini-tournament… Bebars Natcho and centre-back Gil Kain are also singled out as players to watch. Greek ambition
Last season, Greece – who open their campaign against Austria in Leoben – missed out on the U17 finals by a single goal in a tight three-way tie with Portugal and Wales, but coach Georgios Semertzidis is determined to reverse that this time around. “Greek football has not been represented in the U17 finals in recent years,” he said. “If we perform as we can do in Austria, then we have nothing to fear. ”

Denmark win
Having qualified unbeaten from a group involving Finland, Georgia and F.

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