Euro 2012 Semi Final preview

27 06 2012

Well that is that then, the quarter finals are now over and it is time to look on towards the next round of the competition.

From my point of view things went pretty much as expected…

Sadly France didn’t manage to overcome Spain, no surprise really when you see how much discord there is in the squad.

If the French ever want to get back to winning ways then something needs to change. Lets face it they have the talent, there are some very good players in the side, what they seem to lack is any sort of cohesion and desire to do well for each other.

Let’s look at chinless twat Samir Nasri as an example. He is a gifted player, as much as it pains me to say it, but as an example of a hard working team member he leaves a lot to be desired. When coming on as a sub the other night his whole attitude just screamed apathy.
Fair enough he thought he should have started, well you didn’t Samir old chum, deal with it, get over and show the bosswhy you should be the first name on the team sheet.

France aren’t alone in this, you only have to take a look at Holland’s tournament to see what disharmony in the squad can do to you!

The Czech side set out their stall to frustrate and that’s really what they did for long periods of a game that seemed even longer.
Still it had to happen sooner or later, CR7 did what he does best and grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck and bang Portugal are through and the Czechs go home. I’m just glad we didn’t have to watch another 40 fucking minutes of that shit

Germany Vs Greece delivered exactly what I expected. A boring, dirty, stampy sort of a  match from the Greece countered by sheer dominance from Ze Germans. Can’t help but expect more of the same come the Italy game.
Swapping the front three round worked out well and rested a few tired legs ahead of a stiffer test later this week.

England Vs Italy also didn’t contain any real surprises. Balotelli should have killed the game but didn’t and my long awaited penalties finally arrived as of course did the obligatory England collapse… in a tale of two Ashleys both Cole (Twat)  and Young (talentless twat) made a hash of it that sends their country home… again.

So we move on to the penultimate stage of the competition, for me if I look at the groupings I would have to expect Germany to have too much for Italy and would expect that Spain will make easy enough work of Ronaldo and friends.

That said I wouldn’t mind if the obnoxious one did manage to pull something out of his bag of tricks to steer the Portugese through. Would serve Spain right for trying to bore their way to victory!

Advertisements




Euro 2012 Quarterfinals

21 06 2012

Well from tonight onwards we enter the fun stage of Euro 2012.

The group stages were wrapped up on Tuesday evening with England topping their group and France coming through as runners up.

So after a night off we get stuck right in with the first clash taking place in Warsaw tonight

Czech Republic Vs. Portugal

As much as I would love to see a Czech victory here I just can’t overlook the quality that Portugal have available to them with Nani, Veloso, Pepe, Coentrao and of course a certain Cristiano Ronaldo.

That isn’t to say that the Czech’s are toothless, far from it, but talismanic goal scorer Milan Baros has failed to spark so far this tournament and Tomas Rosicky is still carrying a bit of a knock. That said Petr Jiracek has been one of the top performers in the tournament so far, grabbing 2 goals in the opening 3 matches.

Tomorrow night sees the action resume in Gdansk;

Germany Vs. Greece

The second of our quarter finals presents a bit of a “David and Goliath” situation. However on this occasion I am putting my money squarely on Goliath.

Germany were one of my hot favourites before the tournament started and three games in I haven’t seen much to make me alter my views.
Germany are the only team to have picked up all 9 points from the group stage and the Holland match aside, have done so without really having to break a sweat.

Mario Gomez has been in superb form thus far with 3 goals to his name already, 2 of which against Holland were absolute crackers.

I just don’t see the Greeks having the quality to go up against Die Mannschaft in any area of the park. They were lucky in a lot of ways to get out of their group especially as they probably played the worst football out of any of the four teams.

The third quarterfinal takes place on Saturday in Donetsk

Spain Vs. France

Well, well, well isn’t this going to be a veritable feast of football.

In a lot of other years this is a match which could have graced a final, instead we see two of the heavyweights of World and European football going toe to toe in the first of the knock out stages.

I know that you can never base anything on form, particularly in cup football but if we were looking just at the group stages then you would have to say that this is a tough one to call.

Personally I haven’t really fancied Spain, even before the tournament started. There is just something about the way they are playing football at the moment which doesn’t fill me with that sense of awe that has been present in the past when watching them.

Yes Spain have the better players on paper, yes they are current World and European champions and yes they are more than capable of playing some very good football but I can see France tipping it.

Our last installment of  quarterfinal fun comes on Sunday in Kyiv

England Vs. Italy

Not quite the pairing that it might have been in prior years, neither team is what you would think of as a “vintage” side , indeed a lot of people have been saying that this is the worst England side for a number of years and plays a very negative style of football, personally I disagree but I will come to that later.

If I had to choose a word to sum up Italy for me it would be a toss up between dull and mediocre. They have some talented players in the side – Di Natale, Balotelli and Pirlo spring to mind but they made really hard work of their group and were far less value for money than the very unlucky, very spirited Croatians.

As if to prove my point only 1 of Italy’s goals in the group stages actually came about from open play.

As for England, well I am finding it more difficult than usual to dislike the side this year. Sure a few of the old annoyances linger on like Cole, Terry and Gerrard (all good players but just scum) But Hodgson hasn’t been afraid to give time to the likes of Welbeck and Oxlaide -Chamberlain, both of whom have impressed so far.

Whilst it isn’t the flashiest England team of recent years it it probably the most hard working and they look well set up to counter with pace via Young, Walcott and the aforementioned Chamberlain.

With Wayne Rooney back in the side and looking to make up for lost time I could see the Azzurri stumbling in this one.

 





Pitta-Gyros Recipe

1 10 2010

I recently posted my recipe for healthy, tasty, homemade flatbreads and mentioned at the time that I had been seriously craving some pitta-gyros like I used to have back home.

Well we have two options in life, light a candle or curse the darkness or in my case bitch and moan or get cooking…

So here is what to do if like me you fancy a delicious and surprisingly healthy taste of Greece:

Pitta-Gyros

Approx 1 kg of pork loin – you can use shoulder or most other cuts but loin is what I had to hand

Dried Oregano

Sweet Paprika

Coarse Sea Salt

Black Pepper

1tsp Dried Chili Flakes

Olive Oil

To Serve:

8-10 Flatbreads – Click here for the recipe

1 carrot peeled and shredded

2 or 3 tomatoes finely sliced

1 large red onion finely sliced

Tzatziki

Using a sharp knife cut thin slices from your piece of pork and then pound them flat (a cleaver works well)

place the pork into a large bowl and add in  plenty of the dried oregano (I use roughly 1  1/2 tablespoons but adjust to suit your tastes) a good 2 tsp of paprika, the dried chili flakes, a generous pinch of sea salt and the same of black pepper.

Mix everything together with your hands so that all of the meat is covered with the herbs and spices, pour in enough olive oil that all of the meat is coated. Cover with cling film and leave in the fridge for at least an hour, the longer the better.

When you are ready to cook and eat your Pitta Gyros take your meat out of the fridge and cut it into strips, fry in a dry pan until the edges just start to blacken and the pork is cooked through – please ensure that the pork is cooked for the sake of your health!

Pop the pork in an oven proof dish, cover with some tinfoil and place in  a low oven to keep warm.

At this point make your flatbreads and then serve with the shredded onion, carrot, tomatoes and tzatziki and a little extra paprika on top.

Delicious!








%d bloggers like this: