It’s almost time for the prestigious European Championships 2012 in Poland/Ukraine, and I can’t wait. Even though I’m welsh and without a team to back (although I have adopted Germany!) it is still a proper spectacle and it’s always good to have something other than Tennis in between Premier League seasons!
I’m not going to make a long drawn out blog here, just a run down of the groups and some favourites and a team to watch.
Poland, Greece, Russia, Czech Republic.
What an easy group! However with no ‘top’ team here it’s up for grabs for all 4 I reckon.
Prediction: 1. Russia, 2. Czech Republic, 3. Poland, 4. Greece
Netherlands, Denmark, Germany, Portugal
This tournaments group of death. Netherlands and Germany looking strong this year, Portugal a but behind and then the unlucky Denmark. Taking nothing from Denmark and Portugal, they are top sides, but they just don’t have enough quality to escape from this group I think.
1. Germany, 2. Netherlands, 3. Portugal, 4. Denmark
If B was the group of death then this one is the group of severe pain, if you’re Ireland anyway. Spain should be a given, the interesting scrap here will be with Croatia and Italy. The Italy of old would be through no problem, but with their average squad and the recent scandal I wouldn’t put it past Croatia to sneak through. Ireland will be fodder though.
1. Spain, 2. Croatia, 3. Italy, 4. Republic of Ireland
Not a tough group per se, but tough because the 4 teams are close in terms of quality. I think it’ll be between England and France, with Sweden knocking on the door, not that Ukraine are pushovers.
1. England, 2. France, 3. Sweden, 4. Ukraine.
Germany. I think they have the right quality and players at peak to make it there year. Spain, close second.
Russia. Always a surprise to watch and entertaining, with an easy route out of the group you never know how far they can actually get with a favourable second round.