Since day one the 2008 European Championship has been filled with surprises as we have witnessed how many of the favorite teams to be part of the second round have been left out or are still struggling to keep alive. A clear example is the Azzuri or the Italian team which was one of the strongest groups to take to Cup home but the real story was different. Since their first match against the Netherlands; the Italians had a tough time and they ended losing 3 to 0; a much unexpected first match that we could hardly believe. Then Italy played its second rival Romania last June 13th where we saw a more aggressive team but unfortunately for the Azzuri their first goal was eliminated and the game finished in a draw.
On the other hand; we have Le Blue squad or the French which was another disappointment as they also drew and lost to the group leader – The Netherlands – with a final score of 4 to 1. Now; the French and the Italians will be facing each other for the second spot which will secure a place in the quarter finals. As for Romania; the team has drew in their two previous games and they have not really shown much to deserve to go forward in the tournament; however they have accumulated a total of 2 points with two goals against so it is very possible that either the French or the Italians will take the second spot.
As far as Group D is concerned; the Greek team was expected to take at least the second spot but they did not managed to win any of the games played so far. On the contrary; Spain is the current team leader and it has accumulated a total of 6 points by winning against Russia and Sweden. Both Russia and Sweden have the same amount of points and will play each other in the first round final game; therefore; if Sweden wins they will classify for the second spot to move into the quarter finals…a very similar situation for the Russian if they are the winners instead.
Additionally, we have Group A which is currently led by Portugal and Turkey with a total of 6 points each; the other two teams the Czech Republic and Switzerland which were expected to show a bit more of potential and football spirit have fallen behind and have been already left out of the next round.
Finally; we have Group B where Croatia has become the absolute leader; certainly a very nice surprise as the team won all three games against Austria, Germany and Poland. Croatia now moves into the quarter finals with the German team as their captain Michael Ballack was able to push his team through by scoring his first goal of the tournament against Austria winning the game 1 – 0 for a total amount of 6 points in the scoreboard.
Hopefully; this year Euro Champion will be also a surprise as the teams will continue to show their utmost potential in the weeks to come.