Euro 2012 – Ukraine and Poland

September 3, 2006

BBC SPORT | Football | Internationals | Evans receives N Ireland call…

Filed under: EURO 2008 — Ivan @ 11:44 am

The News Review:

* Struggling Italy goes to France for repeat of World Cup final matchup
* BBC SPORT | Football | Internationals | Sanchez expects better NI…
* France won’t be playing for revenge when it faces Italy in Euro…
* BBC SPORT | Football | Internationals | Evans receives N Ireland call…
* Scotland kick-off Euro 2008 with Faore Islands
* Ballack happy with opening win
* Soccer gets nothing from lopsided matchups
* Colautti lifts Israel over Estonia
* Beckham can still return – Hoddle
* Staunton ready to accept touchline ban
* Scotland crush minnows | FOOTBALL | SPORT | tvnz.co.nz

Struggling Italy goes to France for repeat of World Cup final matchup
International Herald Tribune – Sep 3, 2006
Otherwise it may not make it to Euro 2008. Otherwise it may not make it to Euro 2008.

BBC SPORT | Football | Internationals | Sanchez expects better NI…
BBC News – Sep 3, 2006
Sanchez saw his team slump to a 3-0 defeat at home to Iceland in their opening Euro 2008 on Saturday. “We will be okay because it is a game we are not expected to get anything from,” said Sanchez. “We froze on Saturday and did not do the job required. Now we have got to lift ourselves again. ”

Sanchez admitted his players had to raise their game.

France won’t be playing for revenge when it faces Italy in Euro…
International Herald Tribune – Sep 3, 2006
The World Cup runners-up will instead be playing for three points. “It’s not revenge because it’s not like a boxing match where you can win the belt back,” France striker Thierry Henry said Sunday. “If we win, it will be three points. but it won’t give us the World Cup… “But winning on Wednesday won’t change anything for us. It won’t make us champions. ” France and Italy began their Euro 2008 qualifying campaigns on Saturday. The French beat host Georgia 3-0 while Italy was held to a 1-1 by visiting Lithuania. “I think, maybe subconsciously, a team that wins the World Cup relaxes a little bit,” Thuram said. “That only means they will want to make up for it against us. ” Thuram, who joined FC Barcelona from Juventus, has been exchanging views with Italy defender Gianluca Zambrotta, who made the same move.

BBC SPORT | Football | Internationals | Evans receives N Ireland call…
BBC News – Sep 3, 2006
Evans, currently on loan with Royal Antwerp in Belgium, has won three caps at Under-21 level. Now manager Lawrie Sanchez, stung by the defensive lapses against Iceland, has summoned the 18-year-old from Newtownabbey into the senior squad. Sanchez is waiting for an update on the head injury sustained by Aaron Hughes. The Northern Ireland skipper needed six stitches in a gash above his eye and there are concerns his ability to head the ball might be affected.

Scotland kick-off Euro 2008 with Faore Islands
Telegraph.co.uk – Sep 3, 2006
Scotland were initially set to open their campaign against group favourites France and Italy, but Ukraine were not happy with their own fixture schedule. Walter Smith’s team will now finish their campaign with a visit from Italy on Nov 17, 2007, and all their home matches will be on a Saturday… Scotland were initially set to open their campaign against group favourites France and Italy, but Ukraine were not happy with their own fixture schedule. Walter Smith’s team will now finish their campaign with a visit from Italy on Nov 17, 2007, and all their home matches will be on a Saturday. Scottish Football Association chief executive David Taylor said: “We went into this process with some trepidation but I think we have come out of the draw fairly well. “The games against the major countries are reasonably well spread out, as we negotiated at the original fixture planning meeting, and it is a big bonus for the fans that all our home games are on Saturdays. “However, Scotland will probably struggle to qualify with France, Italy and Ukraine the three teams likely to battle it out for the two available spots for the tournament finals in Austria and Switzerland.

Ballack happy with opening win
rte.ie – Sep 3, 2006
The three-time World Cup winners needed a deflected free-kick from Lukas Podolski to break the deadlock for the game’s only goal in the 57th minute. Ballack claimed the goal was ‘lucky’ – just as Germany were ‘fortunate’ not to find themselves behind when Robbie Keane headed only inches past the right post early in the match. The Germany captain said: ‘They are a very good team and they were very strong, especially at the beginning. We did not start well and were lucky not to fall behind early… Ballack claimed the goal was ‘lucky’ – just as Germany were ‘fortunate’ not to find themselves behind when Robbie Keane headed only inches past the right post early in the match. The Germany captain said: ‘They are a very good team and they were very strong, especially at the beginning. We did not start well and were lucky not to fall behind early. But after a while we also carved out a few opportunities so we simply had to stay patient. ‘
Ireland survived a German onslaught midway through the first period when Miroslav Klose, Ballack and Podolski all threatened from promising positions. The Germans created only a handful of chances in the second half but remained firmly on the front foot throughout. Ballack said: ‘At some point the ball just hits the back of the net and you get rewarded.

Soccer gets nothing from lopsided matchups
SportingNews.com – SportingNews.com (subscription) – Sep 3, 2006
The losers get another heavy defeat on their record while the winners, going into the games fearing an embarrassing defeat, ultimately get little credit for scoring four of five goals against semiprofessional players. These games also clog up an already busy international schedule. Qualifying for Euro 2008 involves 50 teams who are striving to join co-hosts Austria and Switzerland, who automatically get places. Because they all play each other twice — home and home — that means cramming 14 rounds of games into a schedule already crowded with domestic and European club games. Coaches complain that the schedule is already too strenuous, and that is why the players are worn out long before the end of the season or pick up injuries they might have avoided if given time to rest. Cut the likes of Liechtenstein, San Marino, Faeroe Islands, Kazakhstan, Andorra, Malta, Luxembourg and Azerbaijan from the list and that eases the situation. Let them have their own group with the winner advancing to the main qualifying competition… England’s lopsided victory over Andorra, which has won only one of 41 competitive games, led to muted celebrations in Sunday’s newspapers. Patrick Collins in the Mail On Sunday described the game as “a vaguely distressing farce” and a “pointless way of spending a Saturday evening. ” In his column in the Sunday People, Portsmouth manager Harry Redknapp said Andorra was not strong enough to get a place in England’s semipro Nationwide Conference. That’s, in effect, the fifth league in the English soccer pyramid. The likes of Andorra deserve to chase places in soccer’s major championships even though they stand little chance of getting there. They may even consider Lithuania’s tie with Italy something worth trying to emulate. But they will improve only if they gain the confidence that comes with winning.

Colautti lifts Israel over Estonia
Jerusalem Post – Sep 3, 2006
Photo: AP

The only goal of the match was scored after seven minutes by Roberto Colautti, who only got approval from European soccer’s governing body to play for Israel three days prior to the match. The Argentinian forward had been waiting for UEFA to approve his Israeli residency status paperwork for the last few months and thanks to last minute efforts by the Israel Football Association was available for the match… Photo: AP

The only goal of the match was scored after seven minutes by Roberto Colautti, who only got approval from European soccer’s governing body to play for Israel three days prior to the match. The Argentinian forward had been waiting for UEFA to approve his Israeli residency status paperwork for the last few months and thanks to last minute efforts by the Israel Football Association was available for the match. Despite winning his first official match in charge, Israel coach Dror Kashtan will not be pleased with the form he saw from his team. Israel was dominated by the Estonians for most of the match and was never really close to doubling its lead. Israel next plays Andorra in a “home” match in Nijmegen, Netherlands, on Wednesday night and will have to win to maintain any hopes of qualifying for Euro 2008. The two top teams in the group, which also includes England, Russia, Croatia and Macedonia, will advance automatically to the European Championships. Israel got off to a positive start thanks to ever dependent playmaker Yossi Benayoun.

Beckham can still return – Hoddle
BBC News – Sep 3, 2006
The 31-year-old Real Madrid quit as England captain after the World Cup and has since been left out of new boss Steve McClaren’s two squads. Hoddle told BBC Five Live: “Steve is correct in saying the door is not shut. “If we had a really difficult group where I could see us getting on a sticky wicket, I think David would be brought back straight away. ”

McClaren has refused to rule out recalling Beckham in the future but the former Manchester United star’s non-selection for the opening Euro 2008 qualifiers appears to suggest his international days are at an end. "It might be in the centre of the pitch, if Beckham does come back at all. I think that’s where Steve will use him" Glenn Hoddle McClaren’s reign as England boss continued on Saturday, with England following up last month’s 4-0 friendly win over Greece with a 5-0 victory against Andorra in a Euro 2008 qualifier… Hoddle told BBC Five Live: “Steve is correct in saying the door is not shut. “If we had a really difficult group where I could see us getting on a sticky wicket, I think David would be brought back straight away. ”

McClaren has refused to rule out recalling Beckham in the future but the former Manchester United star’s non-selection for the opening Euro 2008 qualifiers appears to suggest his international days are at an end. "It might be in the centre of the pitch, if Beckham does come back at all. I think that’s where Steve will use him" Glenn Hoddle McClaren’s reign as England boss continued on Saturday, with England following up last month’s 4-0 friendly win over Greece with a 5-0 victory against Andorra in a Euro 2008 qualifier. But Hoddle, who managed England between 1996-1999, believes Beckham could still return, although he thinks he would have trouble reclaiming his old position in right midfield. “Obviously Steven Gerrard can play there and he put a wonderful cross in for the Defoe goal,” added Hoddle.

Staunton ready to accept touchline ban
Irish Times – Sep 3, 2006
Staunton could be forced to watch Ireland’s next qualifying game against Cyprus from the stands after he was dismissed by Spanish referee Luis Medina Cantalejo for dissent with 15 minutes remaining in the game. Depending on the outcome of the Spaniard’s match report European football’s governing body Uefa could impose an even stiffer penalty. “I am not concerned about anything that might happen,” Staunton, who watched the rest of the game from the tunnel, told reporters. “I kick every ball and head every ball during the game and this time I just kicked a bottle, it’s as simple as that.

Scotland crush minnows | FOOTBALL | SPORT | tvnz.co.nz
TVNZ – Sep 3, 2006
Boyd made it 5-0 after 38 minutes as he raced onto a finethrough pass by Fletcher to beat the offside trap. Keeper Mikkelsenblocked his 12 metre shot, but Boyd collected the rebound to slotthe ball into an unguarded net from six metres. Scotland keeper Craig Gordon did not have to make a save of noteuntil the 71st minute by leaping backwards to tip a deep free-kickfrom Danielsen over his crossbar. Boyd came close on two occasions to scoring a hat-trick with a20 metre free-kick after 59 minutes that Mikkelsen brilliantlyturned around the left post for a corner and the keeper did wellagain after 80 minutes to flick away the Rangers striker’s downwardheader from seven metres. However, sub Garry O’Connor did make it 6-0 with four minutesleft as he cracked a low shot from McFadden’s pass into the box andthe ball slid under the despairing keeper. Faroes manager Jogvan Martin Olsen, who has now seen his sidebeaten 6-0 by Georgia and Scotland, said: “We were very bad in thefirst half and we were under lots of pressure. “It was a tough match for us.

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