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European Championship Play-Offs


BrazilBlue
Eton Blue at the Chelsea Megastore

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Looking at how the European qualifying groups are finishing up this week. The teams who look like finishing 2nd in each group are

Group A Turkey

Group B Ireland/Armenia

(Ireland play Armenia in a last day decider to finish 2nd behind Russia. A draw will be enough for Ireland and they should win on home ground. Most likely Ireland will get 2nd.

Group C Serbia

Group D Bosnia

Group E Sweden

Group F Croatia

Group G Montenegro

Group H Portugal/ Denmark/ Norway

(This group is still wide open going into the last game. Portugal and Denmark are level on points at the top and play against each other in an exciting final day group decider. However Norway are currently 3 points behind the top two and if they beat Cyrpus on the last day they can still finish 2nd. but only if Denmark beat Portugal. This makes the game between Portugal and Denmark very interesting)

Group I Czech Rep/Scotland*

(Czech Rep play Lithuaina on the last day and if the Czech win this game, Scotland will have to beat Spain to finish 2nd. So most likely Czech will get the 2nd spot in this group)

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These teams will go into an unseeded draw to decide the final 4 team for next years EURO 2012.

But before this draw takes place. There will be one more automatic qualification given to the team with the highest points total of all 2nd place teams. This will most likely be Croatia provided they win their last game against Georgia, which on paper shouldn't be a problem

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I'm looking forward to tomorrow. Sweden against Holland. If we win we will become the best runner up and move on to EURO 2012. A draw could do it as well if Portugal beats Denmark (I think). If we lose we'll have to play against another 2nd placed team. Hopefully we'll get some easier opponent. Norway or Denmark perhaps.

There might be some very interesting match ups in the qualifications between the 2nd placed teams. Scotland against Ireland (not likely since Scotland has to beat Spain), Sweden against Denmark (or Norway). And what about Serbia, Bosnia and Montenegro.

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I'm looking forward to tomorrow. Sweden against Holland. If we win we will become the best runner up and move on to EURO 2012. A draw could do it as well if Portugal beats Denmark (I think). If we lose we'll have to play against another 2nd placed team. Hopefully we'll get some easier opponent. Norway or Denmark perhaps.

There might be some very interesting match ups in the qualifications between the 2nd placed teams. Scotland against Ireland (not likely since Scotland has to beat Spain), Sweden against Denmark (or Norway). And what about Serbia, Bosnia and Montenegro.

I don't think Sweden will win or draw to Holland unless Holland play a weaker team. Croatia should beat Georgia and get the last automatic qualification

Ireland should finish 2nd in their group. But I don't think Scotland will get in.

Serbia V Montenegro would be a good rivalry game.

No team will want to get Ireland in the draw. They are the most dangerous team that every team will want to avoid

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Scotland are f**ked. And to rub salt in the wounds, they announced that Torres will probably be back as a starternfor this game. So he will be trying to prove he deserves to be in the national team again, even if it is against lesser opposition

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Scotland are f**ked. And to rub salt in the wounds, they announced that Torres will probably be back as a starternfor this game. So he will be trying to prove he deserves to be in the national team again, even if it is against lesser opposition

It will take more then a good performance against Scotland for Torres to break into that Villa/Pedro partnership. Even Llorente is considered ahead of torres
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I'll be very interested to see how Scotland do tonight. Depends on the lineup that Spain put out, but they won't be pushovers I don't think.

Either way I think it's been a good start under Levein. I am a big fan of Barry Bannan for example and it's good to see him get a bit of a go. Steven Naismith has all of a sudden become the player he was at Kilmarnock and if Danny Wilson had stayed away from Liverpool he'd be in the team in my view as well.

I reckon they're a good show to keep improving and perhaps even come close to qualifying for Brazil in 2014.

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Belgium are out. Trying to spin this as a positive for us, since we already have 2 Belgians, have been strongly linked with De Bruyne, and you never know who else we might go after (Hazard, Mertens). No fatigue or injuries for Lukaku or Courtois next summer.

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Almost over. Here are teams in so far

Group A Turkey

Group B Ireland

Group C Estonia

Group D Bosnia / France

Group E Sweden (Automatic Qualification)

Group F Croatia

Group G Montenegro

Group H Portugal

Group I Czech Rep

Edited by BrazilBlue
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wxwax I think the teams BB has been posting have been the ones to go into the playoffs, which would be Portugal.

Shame to see Scotland miss out. They just aren't at the level to be competing with Spain. But as you say mad_mac, Levein must stay.

Also ace you may well be right about Belgium missing out being a blessing. It'll certainly stop Hazard/Mertens/De Bruyne's price from sky rocketing if they have a good tournament. Not that we'll get either of the first two, it'll be De Bruyne who is most likely.

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The Draw as just been Made. Here is how it looks.

Turkey V Croatia

Should be a very close game. Croatia have some great players but Turkey are a very difficult team to beat, especially at home where there fans create a hostile athmosphere and Croatia will have to play very well. Croatia show win her home game. I think Croatia will come through by a narrow margin.

Estonia V Ireland

Ireland will win this one over the two games. I predict they will play very defensively in the away leg, like they did against Russia. Estonia are the worst team in the draw and they won't be able to break down the Irish defense. Ireland could sneak the away goal. Ireland will win the home leg and go through

Montenegro V Czech Rep

This is the most even game of the draw. Very difficult to separate them. Maybe Montenegro have a slightly better team but It's too close to call for me. Whoever brings their 'A' game will win

Bosnia V Portugal

Portugal will be favorites but they haven't been playing well recently. If Portugal put on a good performance. They should win with players like Ronaldo and Nani in their team. However if they continue to play badly. Bosnia can pull of a surprise.They have good player also. But I'll go for Portugal.

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Is it just me or does Portugal almost never reach their potential? They have some really good players and should be better than they are.

Anyway, I will be keeping my fingers crossed for these to go through:

Turkey - I've liked Croatia since '98 when they had some really nice players, but since Hiddink is in charge of Turkey I will have to cheer for them.

Ireland - Nice team, but the main reason I hope they make it is because of that goal France scored against them.

Czech Rep. - Cech.

Bosnia - No offense to our portuguese players but I've never liked portugal and it would be nice if Bosnia got to play in EURO 2012.

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Why is it that the teams I want to make the tournament are all pitted against each other?

Good news for Ireland though, that should ease the pain from the weekend.

As for the winners:

Turkey v Croatia is a crapshoot, both are inconsistent as all hell. Do the first teams listed have the first leg of the tie?

Ireland

Czech v Montenegro is another tough one. Depends on the fitness of key men on both teams

Finally Portugal who if organised correctly over two legs should deal well enough with Pjanic, Dzeko, Misimovic and co. Of course if Riccy were there I'd say it was a lock, it's not that but they should qualify.

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