Thursday, June 14, 2012

Euro 2012 Update*

Germany continues to roll, Portugal got a win, and Russia was fined $150k for the violence of their fans at the tournament.

Whether they advance or not, the Danes are putting on one hell of a show. They beat the Netherlands, and were tied 2-2 with Portugal until the 87th minute. The Danish play the Germans next, and they're probably going to be the toughest test for Germany so far. But give credit to Portugal for getting a big goal and a big win when they really needed one.

I picked the Dutch to win this tournament because of their talent up front. But their lack of talent and experience in the back is really showing. Mario Gomez took full advantage of the Netherlands' defensive weaknesses, scoring his 2nd and 3rd goals of the tournament. The Dutch left Bastian Schweinsteiger uncovered, and that's like allowing Rajon Rondo to pass to whoever he wants. Only Schweinsteiger's name is much more fun to say than Rondo's. The German defenders don't look very sharp, though, and that might be what prevents the team from winning the tournament.

UEFA fined the Russian soccer association $150,000 because Russian fans attacked stadium staff after Russia's win over the Czech Republic. Here's a clip of the incident in question:

In soccer, the team is punished for actions of the fans. Essentially, the actions of the fans involved in this incident have cost their soccer federation $150,000. UEFA also issued a suspended punishment for future violations. If Russian fans cause any more trouble in this tournament, the team will be deducted 6 points (they have 4 now), and will likely not advance to the next round.

Hopefully it will be an effective deterrent to prevent any further trouble.

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