Reuters Soccer Blog
World Soccer views and news
Germany made it into the final of Euro 2008 despite playing some truly awful football against Turkey.
The question now is can anything stop them winning their fourth European Championship in Sunday’s final in Vienna?
Fans back home in Germany missed some of the second half after a storm in Vienna caused a problem with the TV signal. That was a shame, because it was only in the last few minutes in Basel that Germany actually started playing the way they should have done all along.
In the first half they were far too careless with the ball, seemed to underestimate how dangerous Turkey could be and deservedly fell behind to a goal from Ugur Boral.
On Sept. 8 2007, Turkey slumped to a 2-2 draw with minnows Malta in Euro qualifying.
The Turkish fans who made the journey to Ta’Qali would never have believed their Euro 2008 journey would take them to a first European Championship semi-final against Germany.
Wow, Donald Sutherland seems very upset by that penalty decision!
A lot of people in football look like a lot of other people but more people in Euro 2008 seem to have doubles than in any other tournament.
It’s well known by now of course that Portugal and soon to be Chelsea boss Luiz Felipe Scolari is the spitting image of Hollywood actor Gene Hackman.
The Bundesliga gets a bad rap at times. German clubs have for the most part failed to reach the latter stages of the Champions League in recent years, matches can sometimes seem to move in slow-motion and the officiating can be uneven or even downright scandalous (see Hoyzer, Robert).
But despite all that, Bundesliga players have been sparkling in Euro 2008. And with players from the German league on 15 of the 16 teams no league is more widely represented.
There have been players from the German domestic league in the starting line-ups of almost all the teams that have played of the tournament. Only Spain have no Bundesliga players in their squad.
The book, available in Turkish and English, is a collection of letters written by players and coaching staff in their own handwriting and detailing their thoughts about the tournament and the national team.
Chatting to some Turkish soccer journalists on Wednesday before the news conference with Nihat Kahveci and Hakan Balta, I got the sense they felt Turkey had some fine young attacking players and a lot of potential but could be fatally weakened at Euro 2008 by a dodgy back line.
“I’m a realist,” said Mutluhan Suner from the Kanalturk private television broadcaster.