Euro Cup 2016 The Road So Far}
Euro Cup 2016 – The road so far
Fraught with drama, both on and off the field, the recent edition of the euro cup has been exciting to say the least. The recently concluded group stages have brought to light a lot of glaring shortcomings as well as prodigies to the limelight while cementing the place of top performers in the world.
The tournament was shrouded in terrorism scares and rampant hooliganism between rival supporter and led to multiple clashes in Marseilles. People were jailed, deported and hospitalized. But all this this never took away from the game, its ability to enchant and charm us all the same.
Nail biting finishes:
France had some pretty tight saves in Their games of group A even against much lesser ranked teams like Romania , Minnows like Albania and of course Switzerland, while world conquerors Germany were held to a single goal in stark contrast to their rampaging score lines in the last international event that the took part in.
Suspense has been the flavour of the tournament, with several late goals deciding the fate of many qualifications. According to statistics, 17 goals have been scored in the 84th minute or even later, with Iceland’s deciding match against having their crucial strike in the 94th minute.
Portugal’s 3-3 against Hungary was another action packed performance that would have eliminated them from the Cup if not for Ronaldo’s late game heroics.
The not so exciting ones:
Other teams like England had trouble breaking through defences in their matches, with Roy hodgson lamenting that people dint play to win but only defend. However his frustration maybe attributed to their goal drought even against lesser opponents, making this their lowest ever scoring performance since 1968.
Individual performances have also not been upto par with greats like Ibrahimovic and Lewandoski failing to bring about any modicum of impact in their games. Considering this was going to be Ibrahimovic’s last game in the Swedish shirt he would be extremely disappointed.
Captain of Turkey Arda Turan also failed to live up to his potential with him being heavily booed and jeered by his own supporters.
Format- Legit or not?
The uncertainty of the format has also caused some concerns. Even the decision of the final games having to be played simultaneously since this did not include all the groups at the same time. As aresult of this teams like Northern Ireland and Portugal were able to use this to their advantage, lessening pressure on them.
So, what’s next?
The teams who made it through will be facing off against each other over a period of 3 days starting off with Switzerland vs. Poland, Croatia vs. Portugal, Wales vs. Northern Ireland, Hungary vs. Belgium on the first day (June 25). The next day, will be the dreaded side of the bracket kicking off with Germany vs. Slovaia, Italy vs. Spain, France vs. Ireland. The round of sixteen will conclude the next day with the final match being England vs. Iceland.
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