Euro 2012 – Ukraine and Poland

February 12, 2007

N Ireland face home game dilemma

Filed under: EURO 2008 — Ivan @ 12:24 pm

The News Review:

* THURAM COULD KEEP GOING FOR LES BLEUS
* England return still unlikely for Beckham despite comeback goal for…
* McClaren – under fire. UNDER-FIRE McCLAREN GETS BACKING
* N Ireland face home game dilemma
* SCOTS AWAIT BARI FINAL VERDICT
* The Sunday Herald – Scotland’s award-winning independent newspaper
* BENCH DUTY FOR HUNGARIAN PAIR | Southampton v Barnsley : Barnsley…
* McSHANE DESERVES HIS CHANCE – STAN
* Maybe England can be beaten
* PAGE ENDS WALES CAREER
* PATIENCE THE KEY WORD FOR COLLINS
* Sporting Life – Football | Bolton v Arsenal Live, Football Scores,…
* HARGREAVES GETS FANS’ VOTE
* TORRES RETURNS FOR SPAIN
* MORE TO MONDAY THAN McLEISH
* Sporting Life – Football | Bolton v Arsenal Live, Football Scores,…
* National team coach Rehhagel to stay on for 2 years

THURAM COULD KEEP GOING FOR LES BLEUS
Sportinglife.com – Feb 12, 2007
usVeteran defender Lilian Thuram has again hinted he could keep on playing for France until Euro 2008. The 34-year-old retired from international football after France were knocked out in the quarter-finals of Euro 2004, but was persuaded to return in August 2005 to help Les Bleus qualify for this summer’s World Cup. After reaching the final in Germany – only to lose 5-3 on penalties to Italy – Thuram had been tipped to retire for good but he remains undecided on his future. “I experienced strong emotions during the World Cup and I don’t want them to stop,” Thuram told cultural magazine Les Inrockuptibles.

England return still unlikely for Beckham despite comeback goal for…
SportingNews.com – SportingNews.com (subscription) – Feb 12, 2007
McClaren has also been at pains to create his own team rather than the one handed down by Eriksson, who regarded Beckham as his trusted captain. Capello now says that Beckham is well integrated to the Madrid lineup and he is happy with him. But Beckham would have to virtually play every game for the Spanish club between now and March 24 and score or create several more goals if he were to stand any chance to get back in the England lineup for the Euro 2008 qualifying games against Israel and Andorra. Even if he did play all those game and score those goals, that still might not satisfy McClaren. Copyright 2007 Associated Press. All rights reserved.

McClaren – under fire. UNDER-FIRE McCLAREN GETS BACKING
Sportinglife.com – Feb 12, 2007
McClaren has been slated for his side’s performance as they prepare for vital Euro 2008 qualifiers against Israel and Andorra next month. Boro chairman Steve Gibson backed McClaren and accused some of the country’s top clubs – Arsenal and Liverpool in particular – of failing to bring home-grown talent through. And Roeder, who was a member of Glenn Hoddle’s coaching staff during his time as national manager, also leapt to the under-fire McClaren’s defence. Roeder said: “Steve needs all the support he can get.

N Ireland face home game dilemma
BBC News – Feb 12, 2007
Irish Football Association president Jim Boyce said the organisation did not have the estimated ?325,000 needed to replace the roof on the North Stand. Boyce said that without assistance there was a “serious possibility” home games would move from Windsor Park. But March’s Euro 2008 qualifier with Sweden will go ahead at the stadium. However, a safety certificate issued before last week’s friendly with Wales in Belfast will not be given again after the Euro qualifier against the Swedes on 28 March. The North Stand roof was damaged in storms over the Christmas period and early January. “We have been told a decision will have to be made after the Sweden match to either replace the roof of the North Stand or just take it off,” Boyce told the Belfast Telegraph.

SCOTS AWAIT BARI FINAL VERDICT
Sportinglife.com – Feb 12, 2007
usScotland’s Euro 2008 qualifier against Italy may have to be moved away from Bari after the San Nicola stadium was closed to supporters. No firm decision has yet been taken on whether to find a new venue for the Group B clash on March 28. However Bari’s stadium is one of the venues which will not be open to spectators this weekend because it is considered to have safety inadequacies. Only six stadia will be opened to supporters this weekend because they are deemed to have met the security criteria which are now being enforced following the events in Catania that led to the death of policeman Filippo Raciti last Friday.

The Sunday Herald – Scotland’s award-winning independent newspaper
Sunday Herald – Feb 12, 2007
Hamish Husband, spokesman for the Association of Tartan Army Clubs (ATAC), said it “wasn’t possible” to juggle both jobs at the same time. As revealed in today’s Sunday Herald, Rangers will confirm Smith as their manager later this week. advertisement
It is understood Rangers chairman David Murray is happy for Smith to carry on as Scotland coach until their Euro 2008 campaign ends – whether that be in the qualifiers or at next summer’s finals. However, Smith’s national team commitments would be carried out on a part-time basis, with the Rangers job occupying him full-time. However, Husband said yesterday there would be now be “pressure” on the SFA to dump Smith. He said: “I don’t think it’s possible for Walter to take on the Rangers job and the Scotland job.

BENCH DUTY FOR HUNGARIAN PAIR | Southampton v Barnsley : Barnsley…
Sportinglife.com – Feb 12, 2007
Tykes manager Simon Davey has no new injury or suspension problems to deal with as his side resume their bid to climb away from relegation trouble. Midfielder Grant McCann came through unscathed after starring for Northern Ireland in their goalless friendly with Wales in midweek. Goalkeeper Nick Colgan was an unused substitute for the Republic of Ireland in their narrow Euro 2008 qualifying win in San Marino. Richard Garcia remains Colchester’s only injury doubt ahead of their long trip to Barnsley. The Australian forward has missed the last two games with a thigh strain and is unlikely to be risked, so Johnnie Jackson should keep his place on the wing. Centre-half Pat Baldwin is available after sitting out the last three games as he struggled with the after-effects of a virus.

McSHANE DESERVES HIS CHANCE – STAN
Sportinglife.com – Feb 12, 2007
After last month’s embarrassing 5-2 defeat to Cyprus, Staunton threw McShane in at the deep end a few days later against the Czech Republic with Richard Dunne suspended and a number of players out injured. Facing Jan Koller and Milan Baros, the 20-year-old centre-back produced an outstanding performance in the 1-1 draw and has deservedly kept his place for the Euro 2008 qualifier against San Marino at Lansdowne Road. “He has impressed me since I saw him in the Under-21s after I took over the job,” Staunton said. “I knew about him before then, and I’ve seen him play on numerous occasions. It was just a matter of time that he would get his chance.

Maybe England can be beaten
Jerusalem Post – Feb 12, 2007
12, 2007International friendlies have often been criticized as a waste of time which can put players at risk of injury for no obvious benefit. But last week’s fixtures were an important last opportunity for European teams to prepare for the upcoming crucial round of Euro 2008 qualifying matches. With about a month and a half to go until the highly anticipated Israel vs England game at National Stadium in Ramat Gan, things are looking up for the Israelis and maybe, just maybe, there’s a chance that Dror Kashtan’s troops can turn over the mighty England on March 24. While England appeared less-than-interested in its game with Spain at Old Trafford on Wednesday, Israel’s 1-1 draw with Ukraine was an interesting eye opener, not least because of the inclusion of Chelsea youngster Ben Sahar in the starting lineup. England looked tired and bereft of ideas and fully deserved to get beaten by a far superior Spanish squad.

PAGE ENDS WALES CAREER
Sportinglife.com – Feb 12, 2007
The 32-year-old Coventry defender had been recalled by Toshack for the matches in Cardiff against Slovakia and Cyprus on October 7 and 11 due to an injury crisis, with defenders Mark Delaney and Sam Ricketts ruled out of the double-header. Page last played for his country against Cyprus in a friendly in Limassol last November, and has since been sidelined for long spells through injury. He made his Wales debut 10 years ago against Turkey and has won 41 caps after being one of the defensive mainstays under former Wales boss Mark Hughes.

PATIENCE THE KEY WORD FOR COLLINS
Sportinglife.com – Feb 12, 2007
The central defensive pair are now firmly established in the Wales side but, at West Ham, Collins has to sit and wait for opportunities to impress because of Anton Ferdinand’s outstanding form as Gabbidon’s partner. Collins has had only one taste of first-team football this term with the east Londoners, and then only when boss Alan Pardew wanted to play with three centre-backs to counter Watford earlier in the month. But former Cardiff duo Collins and Gabbidon will be back in harness when the Euro 2008 qualifiers start for Wales in the Czech Republic on Saturday. Collins is philosophical about the problem, saying: “My aims are to get into the West Ham team, stay in and take the club further. We are all geared to winning something this season with a young and exciting squad. We are all determined to have a good season.

Sporting Life – Football | Bolton v Arsenal Live, Football Scores,…
Sportinglife.com – Feb 12, 2007
usBelarus picked up their first victory in Euro 2008 Qualifying Group G after a thrilling win over Slovenia in Minsk. Denis Kovba had given the hosts the lead, before goals from defender Bostjan Cesar and Klemen Lavric gave the visitors a half-time advantage. However, a second half brace from Sergey Kornilenko and a further goal from substitute Vladimir Korytko wrapped up a memorable comeback for the home side. Belarus coach Yuri Puntus recalled Kovba and Vyacheslav Hleb for the injured pair Dmitri Lentsevich and Aleksandr Yurevich while Slovenia made just one change to the side that beat Luxembourg at the weekend, Anton Zlogar replacing Nastja Ceh in midfield.

HARGREAVES GETS FANS’ VOTE
Sportinglife.com – Feb 12, 2007
The midfielder, who looks increasingly likely to remain at Bayern Munich for the rest of the season despite much-publicised interest from Manchester United, had already been voted best England player at the World Cup. Now the 26-year-old has scooped a second individual award after receiving 29% of the vote in a fans’ poll conducted on the official Football Association website, beating off competition from Steven Gerrard (18%) and Peter Crouch (15%). Hargreaves, who won 14 caps during 2006, is currently in the final stages of his recovery from a broken leg and hopes to be fit for the Euro 2008 qualifying double-header against Israel and Andorra at the end of March. “Any time you can receive the support of the fans is very special,” Hargreaves told www.

TORRES RETURNS FOR SPAIN
Sportinglife.com – Feb 12, 2007
Real Madrid striker Raul is omitted although the player is carrying an injury, while coach Luis Aragones keeps faith with Sevilla defender Javi Navarro. Carles Puyol and Sergio Ramos will both play even though they will miss the forthcoming Euro 2008 qualifier with Denmark through suspension. Squad: Jose Maria Reina (Liverpool), Iker Casillas (Real Madrid); Antonio Lopez, Pablo Ibanez (both Atletico Madrid), Carles Puyol (Barcelona), Joan Capdevila (Deportivo La Coruna), Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid), Javi Navarro (Sevilla); Cesc Fabregas (Arsenal), Andres Iniesta, Xavi Hernandez (both Barcelona), Angel Lopez (Celta Vigo), Xabi Alonso (Liverpool), David Albelda, David Silva (both Valencia); Fernando Torres (Atletico Madrid), Javier Arizmendi (Deportivo La Coruna), Miguel Angulo, Fernando Morientes, David Villa (all Valencia).

MORE TO MONDAY THAN McLEISH
Sportinglife.com – Feb 12, 2007
There are suggestions the SFA were seeking to attach terms equating to a player’s buy-out clause, to ensure they cannot be stung in the same way they were by Smith’s departure. Meanwhile, the new manager will inherit a squad of players who have been much in demand this month. Since the Euro 2008 qualifiers against France and Ukraine in October, defenders Steven Pressley and David Weir have joined Celtic and Rangers respectively, while midfielders Nigel Quashie and Gary Teale have found new clubs at West Ham and Wigan. The Hearts trio of Craig Gordon, Robbie Neilson and Paul Hartley are the subject of ongoing interest from clubs ahead of the transfer window closing on Wednesday night, while Hibernian’s Scott Brown could be Celtic-bound and Wigan’s Lee McCulloch is a confirmed Rangers target.

Sporting Life – Football | Bolton v Arsenal Live, Football Scores,…
Sportinglife.com – Feb 12, 2007
usItaly capped a very good week in Euro 2008 qualifying by beating 10-man Georgia in Tbilisi. Daniele De Rossi struck first for Italy before defender Georgi Shashiashvili equalised before half-time. After the dismissal of midfielder Java Kankava on the hour mark, Mauro Camoranesi put the Italians ahead before Simone Perrotta added the third. The Azzurri won the World Cup this summer in Germany but following the resignation of coach Marcello Lippi, the team took just one point from qualifiers against Lithuania and France with Roberto Donadoni in charge.

National team coach Rehhagel to stay on for 2 years
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“Never before in my career have the fans and players wanted me to stay on after a team of mine was eliminated. We talked a great deal to the players, and all of the team members asked me to stay. We owe the European championship to the players, and I need to give something back to them; to stay on and continue,” Rehhagel said, while adding that the team’s target is now Euro 2008.

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