Hello and welcome to the first of Back Page Football’s live Euro 2012 coverage!
The time is nigh. We’ve waited patiently, but Euro 2012 finally upon us. Months of qualifying, a controversy or two and it all boils down to three weeks of non-stop footballing action featuring sixteen of the best nations in European football. And it’s all a bit sweeter that our own Trap’s Army is one of those teams. That’s not ’til Sunday though, so put your green and gold inflatable hammers away.
Kicking things off tonight are co-hosts Poland and 2004 champions Greece. Poland come with a healthy record in recent times having qualified automatically and with a squad capable of impressing on home turf. Greece, on the other hand, are heading in on similar form after an impressive qualifying campaign which included taking four points off of Croatia. Little has changed since their unlikey 2004 victory; it’s still very much defend first, ask questions later. On paper we may not be about to watch a ‘great advertisement’ for football, but who cares – let’s get Euro 2012 started!
But Kevin, I’m new to all this! Read our Group A preview to get up-to-date with everything Group A before the kick-off.
Poland: Szczesny; Piszczek, Wasilewski, Perquis, Boenisch; Polanski, Murawski; Blaszczykowski, Obraniak, Rybus; Lewandowski
Greece: Chalkias; Torosidis, Papastathopoulos, Avraam, Holebas; Maniatis, Katsouranis, Karagounis; Ninis, Gekas, Samaras
Who to watch out for
Polish striker Robert Lewandowski has been sensational in Bundesliga, scoring 30 goals in all competitions last season. He’s many punter’s outside bet to be crowned top scorer at the tournament. Also keep an eye out for his Borussia Dortmund team mate Jakub Blaszczykowski, the man who’ll be leading his country out in only their second international tournament. On the other side of the ball, Sotiris Ninis is sure to impress. He’s small, fast and very tricky.
Poland to get off to a fantastic start in their home tournament, but to be frustrated by much of the 90 by a defensively solid Greek side – 1-0 Poland win.
There’s a lovely little chatbox over on the right, if you have a Facebook page then you’re good to know. Don’t forget to untick the ‘Post to Facebook’ box to prevent pestering your non-football friends with nonsense. If you don’t see it hit your refresh button. If you still don’t see it, hit us a few tweets and any good ones will get featured here.