This opening picture is the only good thing I will like about the Italian National Team during this tourney!!
Man what a great tournament so far, almost every game has been watchable big time for me and thanks to a new hard drive in my DVR i'll have them saved for a while. The coverage on ESPN has been very respectable, i wish they would get rid of that damn ticker at the bottom of the screen, but they have to let us know the NBA Finals are on tonight as if the whole USA does not know about The Lakers vs Celtics (watching as I type this and the Celtics have cut the Lakers big lead in the game to 2 points 73-75).
So far my thoughts of some of the best games. I totally loved and dug the Netherlands vs Italy. As my adapted country for this tournament I was shocked at how many people had not given much props to the Netherlands. I have a thing against the Italian National team that dates all the way dating back to the 2006 World Cup as I was at the USA vs Italy game. I have never seen a team dive so much, cry in pain, get carried off on stretchers so much in my whole life of 1 previous live game before that game. I don't know more than 5 players on Italy yet I do know they are old and play a slow defensive football and love nothing more than a 0-0 tie and taking it penalties. So when the Dutch came out, attacked, pressed and played Total Football I was very happy.
The best overall game of the Tourney probably has been Turkey vs Swizterland, where the host country went up a quick 1-0, the home nation fans were going crazy in the rain and Turkey was looking at their tournament being over with losses in the first 2 games. But they managed to come back and win the game in late stoppage time. With Portugal already having won earlier in the day Turkey knew they needed a win to keep hopes alive of advancing.
Today's game between Croatia and Germany was also a great match. Germany being the betting favorites of everyone before the tournament and opening the first game with a 2-0 steamrolling of Poland it was looking good. Croatia came out soft in their first game against an Austrian team that their own country did not even want to participate and while Croatia escaped with 3 points it was not a display of an up and coming young team. Well in today's game vs Germany it was alright as they played an amazing game, exposed the German flaws and won 2-1 to move to top of the group and basically win the group. Thus setting up a most likely quarterfinal game between Portugal and Germany.
Naturally i'm looking forward greatly to the Netherlands vs France. France has not looked good, and Anelka and Benizema probably will be replace by Henry and someone else. I love me some Thierry but his damn injuries have plagued him for years and we will see if he can suck it up to keep France alive. I know i'll be wearing my 70 Euro (damn those europeans must all be rich!!) KNVB Dutch Oranje jersey and going to the bar in NYC Tonic with all the crazy Dutch fans, just check out this video I found on the web of the fans and this is DURING THE NATIONAL ANTHEM.
Ok lets see what the rest of Game Day 2 hold for us, but this is captive viewing for sure. I wish I was able to go, but looking at how small the stadiums are, it would have been totally disappointing to be there and have no shot at tickets at all, especially with a dollar worth only 63 euro cents these days.