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My colleague Saj Chowdhury has done a bit of a straw poll in the office and here is our(unofficial) team of Euro 2008.

You can see how it compares to the official team here.

Fernando Torres was your star of the final in Player Rater and deservedly so after winning the cup for Spain.

But his two goals in the tournament weren't enough to get him into our overall team. Have we got it right or have we dropped the ball?

Continue reading "Team of the tournament"

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Whenever someone mentions the word "statistics" I can't help but think of past Miss World competitions. And in case my wife is reading this, the last one I watched must have been at least 20 years ago. Yep, that's long before we met, my love.

Anyway, the BBC Sport website's Player Rater has thrown up some interesting numbers following the completion of the group games at Euro 2008...

Continue reading "Lies, damned lies and statistics"

Liverpool, England

There has been much speculation about my underpants during our Euro 2008 road trip and whether, with 18 days to the end of the quarter-finals, I would have enough pairs to see me through without having to resort to hand washing in the hotel basin.

Thankfully, the potential crisis was over before it even began. Not only did I bring the requisite figure, I also managed to do so without resorting to the couple of pairs I normally wear just before going on holiday or the bri-nylon brown and orange y-fronts I last wore in 1978.

Continue reading "Game, set and match in Liverpool"


Spain passed a big test by beating the Swedes and booking their passage to the quarter-finals of Euro 2008 in the process. After ripping apart Russia in their opening game, Fernando Torres and co were made to work really hard for their second win in Group D.

We always recognised that the Spaniards possessed bags of flair and talent. What we didn't know was if they had the steely resolve that is also needed if you are to win a major tournament. I think we have the answer now.

Continue reading "Spain are the complete package"


It looks as though the winner of Euro 2008 will be a team that plays expansive, attack-minded football rather than one that places a great deal of emphasis on defence and grinding the opposition down.

That's what I hope will happen anyway. Portugal, Germany, Netherlands and Spain have all impressed with their style of play in the opening round of group games.

Continue reading "Dutch delight but don't write off Italy"


I've taken a bit of a shine to Switzerland coach Kobi Kuhn. He makes me think of a favourite old uncle; welcoming, with a nice line in presents at Christmas and a stoic desire to shield the young ones from bad news.

In the dressing room after his team's deflating defeat to the Czech Republic, he told his players to forget all about the loss, rather like, I imagine, the way my very own favourite uncle would convince me grades did not matter after I'd received yet another disappointing end of term report.

Continue reading "Keep believing, Kobi"


It's Saturday morning at Television Centre and just minutes to go before I set off on the first leg of my BBC Radio 5 Live Euro 2008 Road Trip...

What I'll be doing over the next three weeks is discovering a bit more about the 16 nations taking part in Euro 2008 by meeting the far-flung ex-pat communities dotted all over the UK.

Today I'm heading for Norfolk, where I hope to meet up with a load of Portuguese. Apparently, over the past decade, 50,000 of them have settled there.

Continue reading "Clem hits the road - UK look out"


I was interested to read in the local Geneva newspaper this morning that Fernando Torres and Cristiano Ronaldo are joint favourites to finish Euro 2008 as top scorer.

They are fairly obvious picks having scored so many goals in the Premier League last season. It's also likely that both countries will fancy their chances of a long run in the tournament.

You probably remember that last time the Golden Boot went to Milan Baros, which surprised everyone, so I got to wondering who the other candidates might be this time around.

Continue reading "Who will have the golden touch?"

Football Focus needs YOU! With Euro 2008 about to kick off in just a few days, we've decided to take on a tricky challenge that I'm sure you'll have an opinion on... which is the best goal ever scored at the tournament.

Actually, scrap that, we all know it was Marco van Basten's wonder volley for Holland against the Soviet Union in the 1988 final. So how about we launch a new honour? What about 'The Marco van Basten Award for the Second Best Goal in Euro History'? I think it sounds rather catchy.

Continue reading "Which is the best Euro goal ever?"

Welcome to BBC Sport's Euro 2008 blog.

Yep, the champagne may still be flowing in Manchester and Glasgow, not to mention Hull, Doncaster, Stockport and other footballing hotbeds around Europe, but already the focus is shifting towards the international arena.

In little over a week, the European Championships will kick off in Austria and Switzerland as 16 countries begin their quest for the Henri Delaunay Trophy.

For some fans, most notably those with an English, Irish, Scottish or Welsh bent, Euro 2008 will have about as much appeal as a wet weekend in Wolverhampton.

Continue reading "Domestic matters settled, now for the Euros"

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