Saturday, June 14, 2008

Sweden vs Spain Match Goals

1st Goal (0-1), Scored By Fernando Torres (15)

2nd Goal(1-1), Scored By Zlatan Ibrahimovic (34)

3rd Goal (1-2), Scored By David Villa (93)

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Villa Smashed Swedes

David Villa was again Spain's hero as his injury-time goal earned Luis Aragones' men a last-gasp win over Sweden in the battle between the top two teams in Group D in Innsbruck.
Fernando Torres put this week's controversies behind him to fire Spain ahead in the 15th minute but Zlatan Ibrahimovic levelled things up in the 34th minute with a goal that looked to have earned Sweden a share of the points.

Villa Scored The Killer Goal
That was until Villa, who scored a hat-trick in Spain's 4-1 win over Russia on Tuesday, struck right at the death to put his side on the brink of the quarter-finals.

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Del Piero vs Romania

Del Piero Vs Romania

Download this video to watch Del Piero's his amazing skills and nice touches when they faces romania

Press Here To Download

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Holland Vs France Match Highlights

WIth the final score reading 4 -1 it was total football from the men in orange and total embarrassment for the french....more

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Italy vs Romania Full Match Highlights Euro2008

Buffon kept Italy alive in the group of death by saving a penalty.

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Croatia stun Germany,Referee stuns Poland

This time, there was no miracle comeback for the Germans.Ivica Olic scored midway through the second half and Croatia withstood a late surge to hold on for a 2-1 upset win....Germany came back with one of their famous late goals but couldn't get the other one.

The other game saw Austria draw level with Poland after Referee Howard Webb awarded a penalty when he should have been blowing the final whistle.Ivica Vastic scored (video)and Austria is still in the competition.

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EURO 2008 Day 7 Round-up: Holland Only Survivor in Group of Death

On Friday, Holland followed in the footsteps of Portugal and Croatia to advance to the quarter-finals as group winners, however, the Dutch did it in sublime fashion.

Holland gives France a lesson in total football

Holland proved their 3-0 victory over Italy in the first round was no fluke as they cruised past France with a 4-1 thrashing.Goals from Dirk Kuyt and his replacement Robin van Persie set the pace for Holland. Thierry Henry pulled one back before Arjen Robben and Wesley Sneijder completed the rout.Earlier, world champions Italy continued to disappoint as they slipped to a 1-1 draw against Romania who wasted a chance to win the game when Adrian Mutu's 80th minute spot-kick was denied by Gianluigi Buffon.

Man of the Day: Arjen Robben
Coach Marco van Basten introduced Robben after the break with the score 1-0 for Holland. The Real Madrid winger, who was recovering from injury made all the difference for Holland. His first order of business was to set-up Van Persie for the Oranje's second. It was a swift counter attack involving Ruud van Nistelrooy and Robben who raced away from the chasing defenders before crossing low and hard for Van Persie, who had only been on the field for four minutes, to volley in.Robben was again the changing factor in the game when he responded by scoring Holland's third goal, only one minute after Henry had reduced the deficit.The former Chelsea player darted towards goal and unleashed an unstoppable drive past keeper Gregory Coupet from a very tight angle to maintain Holland's two-goal cushion.

Goal of the Day: Wesley's Sneijder's goal against France
Just when the French thought things couldn't get any worse, Sneijder put salt on their wounds with a dazzling goal deep in injury time.With the score already 3-1 and the victory only seconds away the Dutch showed no sign of slowing down. Sneijder collected the ball just outside France's box, he turned and fired a fierce shot that hit the crossbar before settling in the back of the net.

Save of the Day: Gianluigi Buffon
It's true that great sportsmen step up when their team really needs them, and things weren't any different in Buffon's case.
Mutu disappointed
The Juventus guardian took the captain's armband following Alessandro Del Piero's exit, and he demonstrated what a true leader he really is by keeping Italy in contention.With the score 1-1 in the 80th minute, Christian Panucci committed a penalty and Mutu stepped up to take the kick that could give Romania their first win at EURO 2008.Buffon made his presence felt when he got a hand to it before a fortunate ricochet off his boot carried the ball over the bar to stop Italy from suffering a humiliating first round exit, at least until they take on France.

Play of the Day: Romanian players colliding
The play of the day was quite unfortunate as Romania midfielder Mirel Radoi was taken from the field with his eye bandaged after a clash of heads with team-mate Razvan Rat, who emerged unscathed."He will require eye surgery and has a broken nose. He will not play against Holland (on Tuesday) and is unlikely to play again in the tournament," coach Victor Piturca told a news conference.

Tactic of the Day: Marco van Basten and the wingers
Just as he orchestrated the 3-0 win over Italy, Van Basten was once again in the driver's seat on Friday, calling all the plays that sunk the French ship.Van Basten started the game with a 4-5-1 formation with Van Nistelrooy as his talisman and the trio of Sneijder to the left, Van der Vaart in the middle and Kuyt to the right.Everyone expected Holland to hold back after finishing the first-half ended in a 1-0 lead. However, Van Basten opted to keep the pressure on the French and pulled out Kuyt and Engelaar and replaced them with Robben and Van Persie.By doing so, Van Basten shifted his tactic from using a playmaker- Van der Vaart- to operating with two wingers using a 4-3-3 formation.The tactical change allowed the Dutch to use the speed of Van Persie and Robben to startle the French defense while Sneijder and Van der Vaart were used as central midfielders to orchestrate the play while keeping things safe in midfield.This shift in tactics kept France under pressure and got the best of the relatively slower French defense and resulted in the wide-margin victory.

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Thursday, June 12, 2008

Quaresma Vs Czech Republic

download Amzing skills by ricardo quaresma when they faced czech in Euro2008
and here's a snapshot from the video

download from miror 1(ZShare)
miror 2 (RapidShare)
Miror 3(FileFactory)
miror 4 (
miror 5 (badongo)

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C.Ronaldo vs Czech Republic

just press at > watch the video

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Portugal vs Czech Republic Full Match Highlights

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Ronaldo price keeps on rising

Ronaldo takes Portugal to the next level<br />

Having been told earlier in the day that their manager will quit after Euro 2008 to join Chelsea, Cristiano Ronaldo and the Portugal team did a good job of looking like the most composed team in the tournament last night.

They are the first team through to the quarter-finals, the first team to lose their manager and the team in possession of the man who looks like he will be the player for whom the competition is remembered.

He is Ronaldo and if his team stay in Austria until the final on 29 June then Scolari will have 18 days to persuade the Manchester United winger that he is better off joining Real Madrid. Mischievous? It might just be the most important things Scolari does as Chelsea manager all year.

Advantage Real Madrid? The Spanish club's acquisitive executives will have been salivating as Ronaldo glided away from the Czech defence in the closing stages of the game and ran at goal with barely a defender in sight. When he squared the ball for the unmarked Ricardo Quaresma to stroke it home, Ronaldo demonstrated that he is still capable of sharing the glory among those whose make up the rest of the Portugal team – for now at least.

In those final moments before the announcement that he was to be the new Chelsea manager, Scolari gave no hint of the news he had broken to his players in the hotel hours earlier. "I am very proud of what we have done," he said. "I've never had more than three days with these players before but now I have 18 days to work and we can do something. It's like being a club coach again."

This was not as effortless for the Portuguese as the ending suggested, or as their early goal from Deco hinted at. "Can we dream of winning [Euro 2008]?," Ronaldo said afterwards. "We can all dream. We all have the right to dream, but we have passed only one stage. The way to the final is a long one but we are in a good condition."

The dream as far as Portugal's prospective opponents are concerned will be a defence that looks vulnerable to crosses played into the area – the Czechs equalised in the 17th minute with a virtually free header from Libor Sionko at a corner.

Ronaldo .. The Hottest in EURO2008

However, Ronaldo put Portugal back in front just after the hour. Quick feet carried him through the penalty area and on to the end of Deco's pass across the goal before any of the Czech defence could jab a toe at the ball.

Ronaldo was then played in to set up Quaresma's late goal. He and Quaresma were together as young players at the Sporting Lisbon academy where, at one time, they were regarded as comparable talents. Nowadays, no one is really regarded as comparable to Ronaldo and few know better what an asset the player must be to Manchester United than Scolari. The new Chelsea manager.

Man of the match: Deco.

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Switzerland VS Turkey Match Goals

The First Goal Scored By Yakin. Min 31.

2nd Goal Scored By Yakin. Min 63.

Arda Turan's heartbreaking stoppage time goal that gave Turkey a 2-1 win over the Swiss.Switzerland became the first team to be eliminated from Euro 2008 last night.....

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Swiss make early exit after Arda's late strike

Arda's clebrating

Switzerland became the first team eliminated from Euro 2008 last night, losing a half-time lead gained in a violent rainstorm to Turkey, who then won in the last minute of added time with a goal by Arda Turan. The Turks are now neck-and-neck in second place with the Czech Republic, the match between them on Sunday in Geneva deciding who goes through from Group A with Portugal. As they have identical goal-differences, a draw would mean qualificiation being decided by a penalty shoot-out on the night.

It was a commendable contest in the conditions, tense but with few echoes of the teams' infamous battle after the final whistle in Istanbul almost three years ago, which resulted in four players and two officials being suspended. A clutch of political as well as sporting dignitaries present saw nothing worse than four yellow cards in a match well handled by one of the world's best referees, Lubos Michel.

He must have wondered at one stage whether it would be necessary to abandon ship and the game.

As rain fell down almost from kick-off and the ball began to stick and splash, defenders had to clear their lines without ceremony, passes needed to be hit hard and quickly and dribbling was only worthwhile to try and win a free-kick. Set-pieces sent skidding at goal duly produced a chance at each end before the Swiss scored. Tranquillo Barnetta's free-kick was touched round a post by Volkan Demirei, who had just saved from Hakan Yakin to his other side, but the home team's Diego Benaglio was fortunate when he pushed Nihat Kahveci's free-kick straight at the onrushing Arda Turan, from where it hit a post.

In the 32nd minute, Arsenal's Philippe Senderos sensibly took the direct option with a whack downfield that held up in the puddles for Eren Derdiyok, the youngest player in the competition. He veered past the goalkeeper to cross and although the ball got stuck again, Hakan Yakin was able to stab it in. He should have done so again minutes later, but missed from two yards. The new striking partnership replacing Marco Streller, who was less than fully fit, and the unfortunate Alex Frei, meant that with Gokhan Inler in midfield Switzerland had three players of Turkish descent in the side.

Turkey made two changes for the second half, when mercifully the rain stopped, much pitch-forking during the interval having improved conditions a little. Within 12 minutes of the restart, Nihat, moving out to the wing, was able to put in a deep cross and Semih Senturk, one of the two substitutes, lost the Swiss captain Ludovic Magnin to head only his second international goal. With two strikers on, and Middlesbrough's Tuncay Sanli behind them, Turkey's efforts now carried greater conviction. They introduced Colin Kazim Richards, born in Leytonstone, for the last ten minutes and after Volkan saved superbly from Hakan Yakin, Turkey broke out and Arda's fizzing 20 yard drive broke the co-hosts' hearts.

Switzerland (4-4-1-1): Benaglio (Wolfsburg); Lichtsteiner (Lille), Mueller (Lyon), Senderos (Arsenal), Magnin (Stuttgart); Behrami (Lazio), Inler (Udinese), Fernandes (Manchester City), Barnetta (Leverkusen); Hakin Yakin (Young Boys); Derdiyok (FC Basle). Substitutes: Vonlanthen (Salzburg) for Barnetta, 65.

Turkey (4-1-4-1): Volkan (Fenerbahce); Hamit Altintop (Bayern Munich), Emre Asik, Servet Getin, Hakan (all Galatasaray); Mehmet Aurelio (Fenerbahce); Gokdeniz (Rubin Kazan), Tuncay (Middlesbrough) Tumer Metin (Fenerbahce), Arda Turan (Galatasary); Nihat (Villareal). Substitutes: Mehmet Topal (Galatasary) for Tumer, h-t; Semih Senturk (Fenerbahce) for Gokdeniz, h-t.

Referee: L Michel (Slovakia).

Booked: Switzerland Derdiyok; Turkey Tuncay, Aurelio, Hakan.

Man of the match: Volkan.

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Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Video: Villa hat trick demolishes Russian Front

David Villa's hat trick and Cesc Fabregas' first international goal tore the Russian defence apart.

1st goal by villa

and the 2nd goal by villa

and the 3rd goal , by villa :D lol

and the only goal for russia by Pavlyuchenko

and Cesc Fabregas socred the 4th goal and tore the Russian defence apart.

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Sneijder's birthday goal the greatest ever ?

Wesley Sneijder's brilliant second goal against Italy is being called one of the greatest Netherlands goals ever.As good as what Van Basten did 20 years ago....

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Nistelrooy was not offside after all

Euro2008 hot news

Premier League referees' chief Keith Hackett said that the goal Van Nistelrooy scored was okay after all.He looked a mile offside when he knocked the ball past Buffon.
But it appears he was played onside by defender Christian Panucci, who was lying off the pitch at the time.Take a look at the picture.You can see him lying there.
"The fact is the assistant was correct; the defender who slid off the field is still regarded as active," Hackett told BBC Sport.
"Christian Panucci went off through contact with his own goalkeeper.He is still considered part of the game." This apparently is the correct interpretation of the offside law - rule 11

So there it is folks.You learn something every day.

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Villa vanquishes Russians

David Villa fired a terrific hat-trick as Spain opened their Euro 2008 campaign with an eye-catching 4-1 triumph over Russia in Group D.

Euro2008 hot news
Luis Aragones, who had the luxury of leaving Cesc Fabregas on the bench, watched on as his men carved the Russians open on countless occasions via some exemplary pass-and-move football.
Villa, currently contracted to Valencia, broke the deadlock on 20 minutes, tapping into an empty net after excellent work from Fernando Torres down the left channel.
Just before the break, Spain doubled their lead as Villa latched onto Andres Iniesta's perfectly-timed through-ball to slip an effort under goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev.
Aragones' side took their foot off the gas in the early stages of the second half, but they soon upped their game with Villa completing an impressive hat-trick, bamboozling his marker to roll home in the 75th minute.
And while Roman Pavluchenko netted a late consolation for battling Russia with four minutes remaining, the night was Spain's to savour as Fabregas capped a marvellous evening with a diving header from close range.
Villa, whose position in the starting line-up was the cause of some debate in the build-up to the event, gave the Russian defence an early suggestion it could be a long evening when he had the first chance of the game.
A pinpoint cross-field pass from Sergio Ramos found Villa unmarked on the edge of the area, but after showing good chest control, the 26-year-old, under pressure from Aleksandr Aniukov, sliced his left-footed shot wide with only goalkeeper Akinfeev to beat.
Russia created their first decent opening soon after when Aniukov got in behind Spain full-back Joan Capdevila on the left, but his cross into the centre was drilled wide by Igor Semshov, who will have felt he should have done better.
Spain then took the lead with a goal from nothing. Torres picked up possession after a Russia move had broken down and the Liverpool man, having raced goalwards got a lucky break of the ball against marker Denis Kolodin, before he unselfishly passed inside to Villa to slot into an empty net after Akinfeev had come out to meet Torres.
That was a blow for the Russians, who had not scored against Spain in their three previous meetings, but Guus Hiddink's men came within inches of an immediate riposte in the 22nd minute when Konstatin Zyryanov hit the woodwork.
A low cross from Diniyar Bilyaletdinov eluded a host of players as it skidded across the area before Zyryanov sent in a shot that rebounded back off the right-hand post with Iker Casillas well beaten.
Pavluchenko also struck the Spain crossbar with a dipping volley later in the first half, but it would not have counted as referee Konrad Plautz had spotted a foul by the Spartak Moscow man.
Aside from those two efforts, it was still Spain who were running the match and Akinfeev was proving much the busier of the goalkeepers and he was called into action to palm away shots from Torres and Villa.
The Russia goalkeeper could do nothing to prevent Villa making it 2-0 in the 45th minute though, when Andres Iniesta's slide-rule pass put the Spain number seven in on goal and he coolly finished under the diving Akinfeev.
The Russians started the second half in confident fashion and Casillas was called into action to save Sergei Semak's header, although the effort was straight at the Real Madrid custodian.
Villa had the chance to complete his hat-trick just before the hour when the Russia defence opened up in front of him, but his low shot was saved by Akinfeev.
With Russia pushing forward as they needed to, Spain were beginning to find plenty of space on the counter-attack and following one breakaway, which resulted in a corner, Marcos Senna and then David Silva both drew saves out of Akinfeev.
It was no surprise to see Spain net a third goal with 15 minutes remaining, and even less surprising to see it scored by that man Villa.
A slick Spain move in midfield resulted in the ball being fed out to Fabregas on the right and he immediately picked out Villa in the middle.
There was still work for Villa to do, but he saw off the challenge of Roman Shirokov before clinically slotting low past Akinfeev and then racing off to the Spain bench where he celebrated with the substituted Torres.
Russia had battled valiantly throughout the match, and they were rewarded for their endeavours when Pavluchenko thumped home a diving header four minutes from time.
However, it was Spain who had the final word when a breakaway led by Villa resulted in Fabregas diving to head home after Akinfeev had parried Xavi's shot, making it 4-1.

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Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Holland vs Italy , Match GOALS

here's the first goal by Van Nistelrooy at 26

and Wesley Sneijder amzaing goal made it 2-0 at 30

the 3rd goal by Van Bronckhorst

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Euro2008 hot news

Lyon forward Karim Benzema has added to Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson's woes by admitting he would prefer a move to Real Madrid over Old Trafford.
The Ligue 1 player of the year, who is currently with the France squad at Euro 2008, has long been linked to the Red Devils, who are currently trying to stave off attempts to lure winger Cristiano Ronaldo to the Bernabeu.
Benzema, 20, has repeatedly stressed that he wants to remain in France for the time being in order to gain more experience.
But he told Spanish newspaper Marca that a move to Madrid is something that would interest him in the future.
He said: "I like Real Madrid, but I think that I'm still too young to sign for a club like that.
"I think that I need to get more experience and I'd like to help Lyon be a European champion.
"Then, in the future, we'll see what happens."
In March Benzema signed a contract extension to keep him at the club until 2013, with an option of increasing the deal for a further year.

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Tottenham's hopes of signing Samuel Eto'o have
been dashed after the Barcelona striker admitted
he is looking for a bigger challenge.

Eto'o insists he is happy to see out the remaining two years on his Barcelona contract, but he is expected to leave the Camp Nou this summer as new manager Pep Guardiola makes his mark on his inherited squad.

Tottenham are understood to have an interest in Eto'o as boss Juande Ramos prepares for the possible exit of star asset Dimitar Berbatov.

However, Cameroon international Eto'o - who was on target for his country in their 2010 World Cup qualifying victory over Mauritius on Sunday - has ruled out the possibility of moving to White Hart Line.

"Tottenham, and I hope the English fans will forgive me, are a club in mid-table and I need more," Eto'o told CRTV.

"I insist that I have a contract with Barcelona until 2010 and I feel great at the club."

However, Eto'o has hinted that he would be keen to join Jose Mourinho's revolution at Internazionale.

Mourinho is ready to ring the changes at the Giuseppe Meazza this summer and, having attempted to sign Eto'o while in charge at Chelsea, the Portuguese could renew his interest.

"I cannot exclude the option of Inter, but I want to repeat that I still feel I am a Barcelona and that I feel under no pressure," Eto'o concluded.

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Dutch stars excel against Italy

Euro2008 hot news Holland produced an outstanding counter-attacking display to beat Italy, with Real Madrid's Wesley Sneijder and Hamburg's Rafael van der Vaart at the heart of much of the side's good work in the first half.

The duo attacked with verve, showing quick feet and causing frequent problems for the Italians, who are without key defender Fabio Cannavaro for the tournament.
On this showing, it appears certain a European giant will move for Van der Vaart after the tournament, with Chelsea already having shown interest in February.
But the industry of Feyenoord's Giovanni van Bronckhorst at left-back and Liverpool's Dirk Kuyt on the right wing was just as crucial to this victory.
Both players were committed in defence and relentless in supporting the attack, and they got their just reward as Van Bronckhorst played a major role in the second goal before scoring the third and Kuyt provided the assists for both.

A trio of Premier League players also helped the Dutch to keep a clean sheet, with Manchester United keeper Edwin van der Sar looking solid throughout and, when called upon to make a spectacular save late on, proved to be ready and able.
In defence, Blackburn's Andre Ooijer - who recently signalled his intention to use the tournament to find a new club - proved solid throughout, and the new manager at Ewood Park may look to give the player the first-team opportunities he craves if he maintains his form.
Khalid Boulahrouz, too, looked assured at the highest level and the new Chelsea boss may consider giving 'The Cannibal' a second chance.
The 26-year-old spent last season on loan at Sevilla but found his opportunities restricted by injury, yet he appeared to have grown in stature since his debut season at Chelsea, where Ronaldinho memorably exposed him time and again when the Blues played Barcelona in the UEFA Champions League.
There was positive news for Arsenal fans, too, as Robin van Persie made his comeback from injury and looked to have lost none of his fast-paced trickery. A late shot after a fine piece of skill could have added to Italy's woes, and the player is likely to improve as he regains his fitness.

For Italy, only reported Chelsea target Andrea Pirlo truly stood out. The Milan midfielder looked assured, spraying long passes around the pitch, and he could have brought his side back into it with a clever free-kick while the score was at 2-0.
Gennaro Gattuso - who has now committed his future to Milan after suggestions he would welcome a move to the Premier League - also put in a typically solid display, but he was unable to stamp his authority on the game as Holland found success on the break.

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French flair nowhere to be seen

Euro2008 hot news
Well the much fancied France will have done nothing to inspire confidence for those who have backed them as they limped their way through their opening Group C clash with Romania.

Group C has been labelled the 'Group of Death' but on the evidence of what was dished up in the dire goalless draw in Zurich - neither Holland or Italy have much to worry about.
The main issue for France was their creativity and that was highlighted by Claude Makelele's display in the famed 'water carrier' role in the French line-up.
The Chelsea man did his job without question, but there was just no outlet for him. It is his job to get the ball to those who can do the damage - but there was nobody in a blue shirt wanting to take the ball off him, let alone take on the responsibility of creating.
More often than not Makelele was left with the task of producing himself and even in his hey-day that would have proved difficult.
The one time he did launch a beautiful ball over the top, club-mate Florent Malouda gave chase and looked set to get to it - but he caught sight of Romanian goalkeeper Bogdan Lobant and that was enough for him to inexplicably hit the breaks!
That summed up Malouda's display as he showed as much for in this game as he did for most of the season with Chelsea.
There was one glimmer of hope as he burst into the box midway in the second-half - but the finish was disappointing, which takes us on nicely to the third of the Cheslea triumvirate - Nicolas Anelka.
And unfortunately for him he did not fare any better than his team-mates, he missed a good chance in the first-half as he headed over from ten-yards when unmarked.

New Drogba?
The second-half and Anelka did not improve and he was hauled off on 70 minutes as Bafetimbi Gomis came on - the man labelled the new Didier Drogba and strongly linked with a move to England.
He did not have long to make an impact and well, he didn't and showed very little of his undoubted promise which has had the likes of Newcastle and Arsenal sitting up and taking notice.
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger was commentating on the match and his eye would no doubt, as with most of the Gunners faithful, have turned to Samri Nasri as he came on with ten minutes to go, but like with Gomis he had little time to make an impact and didn't!
Also on show was Arsenal's William Gallas in central defence and he did what was expected helping Les Bleus to a clean-sheet but his attacking compatriots had little to smile about.
On this performance Arsenal legend Thierry Henry - who missed the game through injury - will surely be risked next time out as there was little on show.
Indeed the much heralded Karim Benzema, linked with just about every team in Europe including Manchester United, did little to enhance his burgeoning reputation with a fairly stale display.

Romanian game-plan
In contrast to France, Romania's game-plan went to plan as they claimed the point they wanted with relative ease.
From a British point of view there was not much on show for Romania until a few minutes from time when Inverness striker Marius Niculae was given a run-out.
He didn't have much chance to get involved but it would have been a major boost to him and Caley Thistle to see him play in the finals.
Former Chelsea striker Adrian Mutu showed some fine touches and was a glimpse of the talent which he wasted during his time in London.
West Brom fans will also have seen with interest the performance of their former man Cosmin Contra - who did very well at right back.

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C.Ronaldo Vs Turkey

this clips shows that C.Roandlo is one of the best players in the world right now
he's talent , Speedy , Header , Both foot , and 4 sure AMAZING SKILLS

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Monday, June 9, 2008

The A to Z

A for Austria: There is no shortage of information on the co-host nation on the site. With weather and maps, information from Alfred Adler to Anton Zeilinger, you can find it here. A is also for avatar – you can choose a face from EUROs past or present to be your presence on the site.

B for Ball. There would be no game without it, and you can find out everything you ever wanted to know about the humble ball and the UEFA European Championship right here with our nifty graphic guide.

C for Champions. There have been 12 previous winners of the competition. See the key players as you have never seen them before with our ingenious caricatures. C is also for Carlsberg Classics. Get the lowdown on EURO classic matches, players and a video guide to each winner complete with 3D animations.

D for Dream team. Pick your own with the web's best fantasy game, McDonald's Fantasy Football. The official UEFA EURO 2008™ fantasy game had attracted almost 250,000 teams by the eve of the tournament with a JVC Home Cinema system up for grabs for the winner. D is also for desktop alerts – keep up to date here.

E for Email. You can email any news article on the site – you can see the most emailed articles here – and you can also download the fixtures to your Outlook calendar.

F for Fans. Fans can get our guide to the city Fan Zones in Austria and Switzerland and get involved around the site. Sign up and you can choose to show your team on the top header and you can even use the My Page feature to display all your favourite content as well as headlines from elsewhere on the web. Fans can also get involved in our matchday chats both throughout the day and on MatchCentre, as well as having their say on our team blogs and fan view articles on each match. F is also for Fan Foto – view the fantastic fan photography here and upload your own images at Canon Fan Foto.

G for Games. There is no shortage of fun and games on the site. We have already mentioned McDonald's Fantasy Football. Why not play for your country with the dangerously addictive Fan Challenge? Win your game and you score points for your EURO country. Vote for your favourite goal in the Carlsberg Goal of the Day and predict the scores and win with JVC Predictor. And why not test your brain cells with our Memory Game?

H for History. Every match report, interviews with all the key figures, past player profiles and graphical guides, it is all here in our exhaustive History section.

I for International. is nothing if not international and is available in ten languages.

J for John Jensen, Johan Vonlanthen and Just Fontaine. Read about their part in EUROs past in our History section.

K for Kits. From woollen jerseys to moisture-wicking materials, discover the story of football kits past and present with the kit guide.

L for Live. will bring you every kick, tackle and shot – all live. Follow the action with our MatchCentre, which features chat, commentary, expert comments, live statistics and image feed. Of course, you can also watch each match live on the site. Price and availability varies per country but in at least one of the host nations, Switzerland, you can watch every game free.

M for Mobile. Follow UEFA EURO 2008™ on the move. Our mobile portal offers latest news, match previews, results, match reports, standings and more on a free-to-browse basis (data charges from your operator may apply). M is also for Music – listen to the official tournament tune, Can You Hear Me? by Spanish sensation Enrique Iglesias, and the catchy collabaration between reggae star Shaggy and UEFA EURO 2008™ mascots Trix and Flix entitled Like A Superstar.

N for News. There's no shortage of news stories on With reporters based with each team and in each host city and offices in Basel and Vienna, the site is the place to find all the latest news on the tournament.

O for Organisation. Find out what it takes to organise and run one of the world's biggest sport events in the organisation section. And watch out for our behind-the-scenes reports through the tournament.

P for Players. Each of the 368 players has their own page on the site complete with profile, photo gallery, statistics and daily updates. P is also for Photos and capture all the images from Austrian and Switzerland with the Photo section.

Q for Quiz. Test your football knowledge and take on our expert in the fiendish Continental Video Quiz.

R for Replay. Get access to our overflowing archive of classic and nearly-new video in the Replay section from as little as €1.99 a match and €19.99 for the tournament.

S for Statistics. We'll bring you the most extensive statistics ever at a final tournament with detailed breakdowns per player, team and match and extensive analysis in the Castrol Statistics section. S is also for screensavers and our exclusive dynamic screensaver brings UEFA EURO 2008™ straight to your screen – even when you're away from your desk. S is also for Store where you can pick up all the official adidas gear like balls and shirts as well as souvenirs.

T for Teams. Each of the 16 teams has their own bespoke index page on the site, with latest news, squad lists and profiles, fixtures, blog, daily player updates, photo gallery and statistics.

U is for unprecedented. With live updates on almost every player every day, player movement analysis and live photo updates, the depth of coverage for this UEFA European Championship is indeed without precedent.

V for Video. is replete with exclusive video from the tournament. You can follow the games live, relive past classics in Replay and get video direct from the teams in the Magazine section. Updated twice daily, the completely free video and text Magazine goes to the heart of the tournament with interviews with some of the biggest names in the game.

W for Widgets. A widget is a small piece of content that you can export across the web. When you register, go to MyPage and you can choose from the many widgets there. These cool chunks of content allow you to see all the latest news and photos or all the information you need on your favourite team. And you can take them with you. Simply press the Add Widget button and you can take them to your own site or blog or favourite social networking site such as Facebook, MySpace or Bebo.

X for Xpect Emotions. You'll be able to show your support and upload your fan videos on with Xpect Emotions coming soon.

Y is You. We want you to feel part of UEFA EURO 2008™ on You can mould the site to your own taste when you sign in. Select an avatar, enjoy your own team news in the page header and piece together your very own page on the site.

Z for Zurich. The largest Swiss city hosts three matches including the mouth-watering France v Italy clash on 17 June. Find out all you need to know with our city guide.

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Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand believes Cristiano Ronaldo will stay at Old Trafford next season.
The England defender's comments come amid increasing speculation that the Portuguese winger could be leaving Old Trafford for Real Madrid after the Euro 2008 finals.
But Ferdinand hopes the player - whom he described as the best in the world for the past 18 months - will stay at the Red Devils and help to create history.
But, ultimately, he will back boss Sir Alex Ferguson's decision on the matter.
Speaking in a Sky Sports News exclusive from a charity visit to Nigeria, he said he would love to see Ronaldo repeat what he has done this season next term.
Asked if he was worried that Ronaldo might leave, he replied: "Not really - I don't think Manchester United are noted as a selling club really.
"I saw an interview with the manager the other day and I think we only really sell players that we want to sell and I wouldn't put Ronnie in that category.
"At the end of the day he is a Man United player and long may that continue," he said, adding he thought it was imperative that the club keeps him.
"I want him to be my team-mate because he is a fantastic footballer and that means we are going to be that bit more successful if we have got him in our ranks.
"As I said, I would love him to stay but I am not the man who makes the decisions at the club.
"So we are just like the fans really, we read the papers and listen to the TV and stuff and we'll watch this space but I'm sure he will be a Man United player next season."
After winning the Premier League and UEFA Champions League double last season, Ferdinand added: "You want to be part of history, especially at this club. To be part of a team that goes on to be successful and wins trophy after trophy would be fantastic and that is the aim - every footballer wants to be successful and win trophies, so me personally on that level, I wouldn't want to leave a winning formula."
He conceded that "Ronnie's his own man", but added: "The lads at the club really enjoy playing with him and having him around the squad - so long may that continue."
Whatever the outcome, Ferdinand said the players would be 100 per cent behind boss Ferguson.
He said: "The manager is first-class in these situations and he's had massive decisions to make in the past.
"I'll be honest with you, whatever the manager goes with I think the players will be standing 100 per cent behind him because his experience is telling obviously and when he makes a decision, invariably they are on the button so whatever he makes his mind up with, we are there behind him."

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Manchester City have made Ronaldinho an offer that would see the Brazilian become the highest-paid footballer in the world if he agreed to move to the club.

A delegation of City representatives travelled to Brazil on Saturday to formally confirm they would be willing to pay the Barcelona forward around £200,000 a week.
'The discussions were mainly with Ronaldinho's brother, Roberto de Assis, who is acting as his agent. However, Ronaldinho briefly put in an appearance, too, and there will be more talks over the next two days. City's owner, Thaksin Shinawatra, has left the matter to his right-hand man, Pairoj Piempongsant, who is reporting back to Cook and the new manager, Mark Hughes,' reports The Guardian.
Ronaldinho has yet to give the club an answer and has been left to mull over their offer.
"Barcelona have given us the clearance to talk to Ronaldinho and we've had people in Brazil over the weekend," confirmed City's executive chairman Garry Cook.
"We have a long, long list of things we need to get done because it's a very complex issue, with the type of player that he is. But when you are ambitious as we are, you just keep ticking the boxes and we're moving forward.
"We are nowhere near complete, but the most important thing is that he wants to get back to playing football and show the world again that he is the greatest footballer."

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Chelsea have been warned they'll have to pay a British record transfer fee to sign Franck Ribery from Bayern Munich.
The French midfielder has emerged as one of the club's top transfer targets this summer but owner Roman Abramovich will have to part with £31million to prise him from the Bundesliga champions, according to the Daily Mail.
Chelsea chief executive Peter Kenyon is believed to have already made contact with Bayern although a decision over Ribery's proposed switch to Stamford Bridge but a decision won't be made until France's participation at Euro 2008 is over.
Jurgen Klinsmann, the new coach at the Allianz Arena, is desperate to keep German football's Player of the Year at the club for their assault on European success next season but the lure of the Premier League could be too great.
Ribery, who has a pivotal role to play for France in Austria and Switzerland right now, moved to Bayern last summer for £16m from Marseille but now his value has doubled after his superb displays for both club and country.
Chelsea will now need to pay just over the £30.8m they spent on Andriy Shevchenko two seasons ago, but it's understood they are prepared to do it.

want to read more about transfers in EPL press at the link below

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The Very Early Gossip (Transfer Gossip)

Manchester City have made Ronaldinho an offer that would see the Brazilian become the highest-paid footballer in the world if he agreed to move to the club. A delegation of City representatives travelled to Brazil on Saturday to formally confirm they would be willing to pay the Barcelona forward around £200,000 a week.

Chelsea hope to raise up to £30m when they sell Didier Drogba to AC Milan. Having grown tired of the African's histrionics, Chelsea have effectively put Drogba up for sale. Milan vice-chairman Adriano Galliani announced at the weekend that they had been given permission to open talks with the player and according to The Daily Telegraph, 'Although formal permission has not been granted for Milan to negotiate directly with Drogba, Chelsea are not disputing Galliani's claims and do not want to worsen relations between the clubs in the wake of their attempts to attract Milan manager Carlo Ancelotti to Stamford Bridge.' But those relations may be strained by the small matter of Drogba's fee. The Times reports: 'Milan sources said yesterday that the clubs had agreed a fee for the Ivory Coast striker, based on an initial down payment of £10 million, rising to £18 million during a three-year contract, but such claims brought an angry denial from Stamford Bridge. Chelsea value Drogba at £30 million and insist that they will hold out for such a fee, particularly because he has three years remaining on a contract that was signed midway through last season.

It also remains to be seen whether Andrei Shevchenko will be making a return to Milan. While Galliano remarked that "Chelsea consider Andrei unsellable", it appears that Milan don't actually consider him worth buying. According to The Times, Milan proposed 'to take him on loan for a season and pay a proportion of his £130,000-a-week wages. Chelsea used a similar deal to get the high-earning Hernan Crespo and Juan Sebastian Veron off the wage bill in the past (Crespo went on loan to Milan then Inter, Veron also went to Inter), but they are adamant that Shevchenko will not leave for nothing.'

It wouldn't be right to go a whole Gossip Column without giving you a little nugget of Chelsea manager speculation and nonsense, so here we go. The Sun this morning claims that both Frank Rijkaard and Roberto Mancini will be 'interviewed' on Roman Abramovich's yacht in the south of France this week. All of that sounds very lovely, although The Gossip Column can't be the only one thinking that if Roman doesn't like what he sees, he'll tip the losing candidate overboard in a Bond-villain style display of unhappiness. No? Just us? Anyway, in the same story they find room to speculate that Chelsea are duking it out with their old friend Jose for Samuel Eto'o, who will cost either them or Inter something like £22million.

Here's one of those stories that makes you go "Eh?" The Daily Star (yeah yeah) 'reports' that Portsmouth want to sign Patrick Vieira from Inter Milan. Apparently Jose Mourinho has told the Frenchman that he is surplus to requirements at the San Siro, so naturally the Star makes the connection between the World Cup, European Championship, three-time Premier League and three-time Serie A winner Vieira and Harry Redknapp. Makes perfect sense, don't it? Anyway, they claim that Pompey will give Inter £4million for Vieira, and pay the man himself £100,000-a-week.

It's decision time for Cardiff City's in-demand youngster Aaron Ramsey. The 17-year-old is expected to make a decision on his future in the next forty-eight hours after holding talks with Manchester United, Arsenal and Everton over the weekend - all of whom have agreed a £5m fee with Cardiff. Ramsey was given a tour of United's training ground on Friday and then spoke on the telephone to Sir Alex Ferguson. The Premiership champions have been depicted as being in pole position to sign Ramsey on account of their offer to loan back Ramsey to Cadiff next season. However, The Guardian describes the player as 'keen on establishing himself at a new club, rather than returning to Cardiff' - a wish that increases the prospect of him joining Everton given that David Moyes can offer the youngster the chance to enjoy first-team football next term, something neither Ferguson nor Arsene Wenger could guarantee. Arsenal's attempt to sign Ramsey concluded with the club chartering a private jet to fly him out to Switzerland in order to hold face-to-face talks with Wenger. And as The Guardian notes, 'With Ramsey's best friend in football, Tottenham's Chris Gunter, also based in north London, Wenger has good cause to be optimistic.'

Middlesbrough boss Gareth Southgate is closing in on a £3million deal for USA international Michael Bradley...Birmingham boss Alex McLeish is chasing Celtic defender Bobo Balde...Steve Sidwell wants a £3million golden handshake from Chelsea before he moves to Aston Villa or Middlesbrough...Steven Davis is expected to complete a permanent move from Fulham to Rangers after his loan there last season...Wolves manager Mick McCarthy has made a bid worth £3.5million for Burnley's Northern Ireland striker Kyle Lafferty...Goalkeeper Jussi Jaaskelainen has snubbed Aston Villa and has agreed to stay with Bolton...Blackburn defender Christopher Samba has attracted the interest of Primera Liga side Sevilla...Middlesbrough are closing in on a deal to sign Portsmouth midfielder Sean Davis...Wayne Bridge is set to sign a new four-year del at Chelsea despite failing to dislodge Ashley Cole from the left-back position.

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Fabio Capello has announced his plans to name his permanent England captain in August.
The Italian is expected to reveal his first choice skipper before England face the Czech Republic in a friendly on August 20.

So far Capello has tried out Steven Gerrard, Rio Ferdinand, John Terry, David Beckham and Gareth Barry as captains and has not yet reached his final decision.
He told Sky Sports: "I have more days more to think. I have two candidates to be captain.
"I think (I will decide) in August, 10 days before the start of the new season."
Capello is preparing for the World Cup qualifiers which begin in September by following the progress of group opponents Croatia at Euro 2008.
He was in Vienna to see them beat co-hosts Austria yesterday and said: "Croatia are a very strong team because they play together a lot.
"I have to know everything about them, all their secrets. I am watching their style, the set-pieces and also the movement of the team when they have the ball and when they don't."

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Dutch midfielder Wesley Sneijder has played down a training ground incident with compatriot Robin van Persie which left him needing a hospital visit.
Sources within the Dutch camp say Real Madrid's Sneijder and Arsenal striker Van Persie are barely on speaking terms.
The situation can not have been improved after Van Persie hurt Sneijder's ankle in training before Holland's opening Euro 2008 game against Italy on Monday.
But the midfielder has since had the all clear for the Italy game, although Van Persie, who has himself been returning from injury, has been ruled out.
Dutch boss Marco van Basten originally denied the clash had taken place, while Sneijder has since played down the incident, saying he does not blame Van Persie.
Sneijder told the Daily Express: "There was an unfortunate incident. Van Persie landed hard on my ankle.
"I was in a lot of pain at first, but after a precautionary visit to the hospital it turns out it's not as bad as it looked.
"It was a scare, and I'm now going to have a rest. I don't blame Robin. Everyone is trying their best to win a place in the starting line-up."

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Sunday, June 8, 2008

Modric penalty downs hosts

Croatia survived a stern test as they kicked off their Euro 2008 campaign with a 1-0 victory over co-hosts Austria in Group B.

Tottenham new boy Luka Modric put Croatia ahead with a penalty in only the fourth minute after Ivica Olic had been brought down by Rene Aufhauser.
Austria, the lowest ranked team in the tournament, overcame a slow start to put Croatia under some pressure as half-time approached, but they missed a number of opportunities to draw level.
The momentum stayed with Austria after the break and continued to build as, roared on by their home crowd in Vienna, they pinned Croatia back.
Stipe Pletikosa parried away Umit Korkmaz's effort moments from the end as Croatia clung on to pick up three points and leave Austria with an uphill task to reach the quarter-finals.

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Portugal ease to opening win

Portugal opened their Euro 2008 account with a comfortable 2-0 victory over Turkey in Geneva.

Cristiano Ronaldo - who hit the post with a sensational free-kick early on - inspired his side to victory as they scored two second half goals to kill of a Turkish threat which never materialised.
After having a first-half effort disallowed, Pepe made no mistake on the hour as he gave Portugal the lead with a stunning individual effort.
Nuno Gomes hit post and crossbar before the second goal arrived in stoppage time when substitute Raul Meireles finished off a fine counter-attack.
Portugal now sit on top of Group A after Czech Republic's 1-0 win over Switzerland earlier on Saturday.
The first 45 minutes in Geneva were an open affair but, apart from Ronaldo's set-piece, neither goalkeepers were unduly troubled.
Jose Bosingwa struck a low cross into the side-netting in the second minute following a promising move down the right.
Chelsea's new signing then provided Ronaldo with his first sight of goal, the 23-year-old cutting in from the right but blazing a left-footed shot high over the crossbar in the sixth minute.
Turkey appealed for a penalty seven minutes later when Tuncay Sanli went down under the challenge of Bosingwa but German referee Herbert Fandel waved away their claims.
Real Madrid defender Pepe thought he had put the Euro 2004 finalists ahead in the 17th minute when he headed home following Simao Sabrosa's corner but his celebrations were cut short by an offside flag.
Nihat Kahveci saw his free-kick from just outside the area deflected narrowly wide as the game continued to flow from end to end.
Ronaldo almost conjured up a moment of magic on the half-hour, weaving his way past four players only to drag his right-footed effort wide.
Fenerbahce goalkeeper Volkan then stepped up to keep out Ronaldo's blistering free-kick and Joao Moutinho lashed over from 10 yards, but the deadlock was not to be broken in the first half.

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Sverkos sinks Swiss

Czech Republic opened Euro 2008 with three points as they defeated co-hosts Switzerland 1-0 at St Jakob-Park.

Second-half substitute Vaclav Sverkos scored the only goal of the game on 70 minutes to settle an underwhelming curtain-raiser in Basel.
The first half was a tight affair, but it was Switzerland who created the best opportunity midway through the opening period as record scorer and captain Alexander Frei was denied by Czech goalkeeper Petr Cech from close range.
However, that was to be Frei's last contribution as the striker limped off in tears on the stroke of half-time with a serious knee injury which could well have ended the Borussia Dortmund star's tournament.
The Czechs lacked a cutting edge in the first 45 minutes and that bluntness continued after the interval to bring about the introduction of Sverkos in place of the ineffective Jan Koller.
And Sverkos made an almost immediate impact upon the game as he broke the Switzerland offside trap to poke in his first international goal after latching onto a long Tomas Galasek header.
Switzerland could have snatched a point in Group A with 10 minutes remaining as Cech palmed out a Tranquillo Barnetta drive, but substitute Johan Vonlanthen could only rattle the rebound against the crossbar.
What the defeat, and more importantly Frei's injury, will do to the Swiss remains to be seen, but they already face an uphill struggle to qualify from a group that also includes Turkey and Portugal.

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A study of Nicknames - to while away the time..

Most people know that Torres' nickname is 'El Nino' and that Cristiano Ronaldo hasn't got one.Here are a few more.Greece's Euro 2004 goalkeeping hero Antonis Nikopolidis is 'Clooney' because of his premature grey hair.Okay so maybe he does look a bit like Clooney - if the light is not too strong and you're not wearing your spectacles..!Still on hair - Spaniard Sergio Ramos is 'Tarzan' because of his long hair. France's Karim Benzema is 'BigBenz'.Sweden's Henrik Larsson is called 'The Gold Pearl'.Spanish 'keeper Iker Casillas is 'Saint Iker' for all the fabulous saves he has pulled off.Rumanian's Adrian Mutu and Marius Niculae are called 'dynamite and 'the arrow' respectively.Marco Materazzi - whose picture does not feature above is called 'Matrix' by his fans and Macellazi' by his detractors [ mostly Frenchmen..!] which apparently is a play on the word macellaio , meaning 'The butcher'.

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