Sunday, June 24, 2012

Euro 2012 Semifinals Set

The Euro 2012 Semifinals are set with Portugal taking on Spain on Wednesday and Germany taking on Italy on Thursday. Let's take a quick look at each of the four remaining teams:

SPAIN (World Ranking - 1)
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Tourney Results:

D 1-1 vs Italy
W 4-0 vs Ireland
W 1-0 vs Croatia
W 2-0 vs France
vs Portugal

Leading Scorers - Xabi Alonso, Fernando Torres, Cesc Fábregas - 2
Assist Leader -  David Silva - 3

Worth Noting - Spain defeated Portugal 1-0 at the 2010 World Cup by a score of 1-0. While goalscorer David Villa won't be there for the rematch, much of the squad that outshot the Portuguese 19-9 and dominated the game with 60% possession is returning.

PORTUGAL (World Ranking - 10)
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Tourney Results:

L 1-0 vs Germany
W 3-2 vs Denmark
W 2-1 vs Netherlands
W 1-0 vs Czech Republic
vs Spain

Leading Scorer - Cristiano Ronaldo - 3
Assist Leaders - João Moutinho, Nani - 2

Worth Noting -  Portugal has only reached the Euro Cup Final one time back in 2004 when they were the host nation. Considered the favorites going into the Final, they were shocked 1-0 by Greece on a goal from Angelos Charisteas.

GERMANY (World Ranking - 3)
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Tourney Results:

W 1-0 vs Portugal
W 2-1 vs Netherlands
W 2-1 vs Denmark
W 4-2 vs Greece
vs Italy

Leading Scorer - Mario Gomez - 3
Assist Leader - Mesut Özil - 3

Worth Noting - Germany is now 14-0 in Euro Qualifying and Euro Cup matches during this tournament. The Germans have outscored their opponents 43-11 during that stretch and scored 3 or more goals in 9 of those matches.

ITALY (World Ranking - 12)
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Tourney Results:

D 1-1 vs Spain
D 1-1 vs Croatia
W 2-0 vs Ireland
D 0-0 vs England (won 4-2 on penalties)

Leading Scorers - Andrea Pirlo, Antonio Cassano, Antonio Di Natale, Mario Balotelli - 1
Assist Leader - Andrea Pirlo - 2

Worth Noting - Italy defeated the Germans in the semifinals of the 2006 World Cup in Germany by a score of 2-0 getting goals in the 119th and 121st minutes. That would set the stage for Italy's fourth World Cup Title which they'd claim after a shootout win against the French.

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