Euro 2012: Group C, Day 2: Will Ireland Be Stout?

Group D gave us a very fun Italy vs. Spain match on Sunday, while Ireland was their own worst enemy against Croatia.

Today, the Table Cloths go up against the Stallions, while it’s Guinness vs. Sangria. Check out our group predictions here

Either of these guys below start? …make a difference?

48 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Jared on 2012/06/14 at 9:38 AM

    Pletikosa with a couple of big saves just by staying on his feet (pay attention Steklenburg).


  2. Posted by dth on 2012/06/14 at 9:48 AM

    Can Italy win this thing?


    • Posted by Jared on 2012/06/14 at 10:05 AM

      Never bet against the Italians when they enter a tournament under a cloud of a betting scandal.


    • Posted by matthewsf on 2012/06/14 at 10:10 AM

      Just asked myself the same question. Could balance and a wide array of ways they can play. Defense still is strong.


    • Posted by mbw on 2012/06/14 at 10:35 AM

      I liked ’em as a dark horse coming in, given how stout their defense was all through qualifying, the fact that their core plays together for club, etc. But you’d have to think Germany would be a much tougher matchup for them than Spain was.


  3. Posted by matthewsf on 2012/06/14 at 10:08 AM

    Fernando Torres starting for Spain.


  4. Posted by matthewsf on 2012/06/14 at 10:09 AM

    James McClean not starting for Ireland. Cox and Keane up top.


  5. Posted by Jared on 2012/06/14 at 10:33 AM

    And things are level. I thought I heard one of the studio guys at halftime say that the Croatians had to whip in crosses from the wing. Not sure if it was Ballack or Lalas but it was a good point either way for two guys that have gotten a lot of criticism.


  6. People are saying that fans were chanting racist things at Balotelli when he left the field… yes? no?

    Sky news twitter feed says:

    UEFA to investigate allegations of racist chanting directed at Mario Balotelli during Sunday’s Euro 2012 draw between Italy and Spain


    • Posted by Nelsonaoatl on 2012/06/14 at 11:08 AM

      so stupid…Spain’s best player in 08 to me was Marcos Senna as a beast at DMF. I guess hooligans do anything to irk a player. I love that the Danes chanted Messi when Ronaldo got the ball.


      • Posted by Jared on 2012/06/14 at 11:50 AM

        It was probably not the Spanish chanting at Balotelli. There were reports before the tournament of Italians going to the games to abuse Balotelli because they don’t consider him an Italian.


        • Posted by KickinNames... on 2012/06/14 at 1:05 PM

          I have family in Italy who are Roma fans. The most common opposing team chant towards him was roughly translated…”there’s no such thing as a black Italian…” That’s the nation he pulls the shirt on for.


          • FWIW: From the telegraph

            Thomas Herzog, a spokesman for the Football Supporters Europe Fans’ Embassy team for Spanish supporters, says that around “200 supporters started monkey chants when the Italian player Mario Balotelli touched the ball.

            “We’re glad to report that the majority of Spanish supporters reacted in a very positive way, because many of them tried to intervene very quickly and stop the fans in question from singing,” Herzog said.

            “We are angry about this small section of Spanish supporters showing this kind of racist behaviour. But we have to stress that most of the Spanish supporters were very aware of this issue and tried their best to intervene.”


          • Posted by Nelson on 2012/06/14 at 3:03 PM

            so what about darker Sicilians?..Jesus, they’re just a short sail from Africa.


            • Posted by Jared on 2012/06/14 at 6:23 PM

              If you asked a northern Italian they may not see much of a difference between a Sicilian and someone from Africa. Very weird North-South divide in that country.

  7. Posted by KickinNames... on 2012/06/14 at 11:09 AM

    I think racist behavior of any kind is reprehensible. But this constant state of alert picking up on everyt negative noise or implied action is just getting a bit tiresome TBH…lots of people just despise Balotelli because he’s an immature, self absored ass of a human being…that ought to be considered in the discussion.


    • People yelling “asshole” because they think he is an asshole is one thing, people telling me that monkey chants/sounds were audible when he touched the ball is another.


      • Posted by KickinNames... on 2012/06/14 at 12:48 PM

        Exactly. But EVERY noise or disagreement is immediately translated as a racist attack by the covering media. It’s the sexy story of this cup.


  8. Posted by Crow on 2012/06/14 at 11:33 AM

    I’ve been saying it for awhile but Italian football is dying. After the refs gave them the 2006 World Cup it has been a slow and steady decline. The domestic league continues to decline and the national team is growing more unimpressive by each major tournament.

    I feel even stronger after talking to several Italians while I was abroad. Its amazing the HATRED many have for the sport. Some were never fans- some used to be fans. The closest comparison I can get is the feelings that some have over the NFL now here in the United States with the cheating/dirty play/concusssions, etc. But it was much stronger than that… many of the Italians I talked to hate soccer like some people hate religion or politics.

    The incessant racism, cheating scandals, and violence is destroying the sport.


  9. Posted by Jared on 2012/06/14 at 11:52 AM

    Well the Ireland-Spain game is over. I guess I’ll be productive this afternoon.


  10. Posted by KickinNames... on 2012/06/14 at 12:56 PM

    Dunne got done! Had to say it. El Nino is in the forecast….


  11. Posted by Crow on 2012/06/14 at 12:57 PM

    I almost feel bad for this Irish keeper.


    • Posted by KickinNames... on 2012/06/14 at 1:01 PM

      Yeah that was pretty pathetic defending on Silvas. Incredible save on Xavi.


  12. Posted by Jared on 2012/06/14 at 1:16 PM

    Ian Darke just did the English pronunciation of Martinez, Martin followed by ez. How hard is it to pronounce it correctly?


    • Posted by Mrs. Gomez on 2012/06/15 at 3:21 PM

      Ian Darke as a commentator leaves a lot to be desired. Not to my taste. Boring. I prefer Andres Cantor.


      • Posted by Antonio Henry on 2012/06/16 at 10:09 AM

        hard to really enjoy listening to any English commentator, no matter how good they are, when you’ve been listening to Spanish commentators forever. The excitement is unrivaled


    • Posted by Antonio Henry on 2012/06/16 at 10:07 AM

      Maybe he spent to much time in Augusta


  13. Posted by kaya on 2012/06/14 at 2:33 PM

    The Irish are stout, if you’re referring to the fans!


  14. Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/06/14 at 3:04 PM

    One of the main reasons Thierry Henry loves Arsenal was started because of a racist incident during the CL vs Lazio (?) in Rome. Every time he touch the ball, their Ultras started to make money noises. The travelling Arsenal fans heard this and chanted his name for the rest of the game in an effort to drown out this vile verbal abuse.

    People point the finger at Eastern Europe, but there are many countries in the West where is still exists, esecially Spain and Italy. And I am not just talking about the uneducated underclass of each society… and I include England, experienced plenty of racism firsthand, on the field and terraces.


    • Posted by Crow on 2012/06/14 at 3:18 PM

      I agree-I always thought growing up that the rural part of USA I am from was the most racist place on Earth but then I went to Europe. I’ve heard Russia and parts of Asia are worse although I haven’t been to either. Probably the biggest tragedy of the sport and world society in general. A real shame.


  15. Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/06/14 at 3:12 PM

    A colleague and I were looking at the Irish and Spanish benches, and the teams that the subs play for. Ridiculous amount of talent that would walk into most teams. Same with Germany, slightly lesser extent with Netherlands.


    • Posted by Crow on 2012/06/14 at 3:20 PM

      I’m sure you remember the whole Mikel Arteta for England 2010 campaign. I think that is one of the best examples there is.


      • Posted by Nelson on 2012/06/14 at 4:05 PM

        he is exactly what they need


      • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/06/14 at 7:29 PM

        That was always a non-starter. Started by people who don’t understand Article 18.1a…

        Arteta doesn’t start at Arsenal when Wilshere is fit.


        • Posted by Nelsonaoatl on 2012/06/14 at 8:58 PM

          @george wilshire can be amazing, but he’s not fit, right?

          did anyone see that bad offsides call against Italy?


        • Posted by matthewsf on 2012/06/14 at 9:03 PM

          I’d like to see Wilshere fit. He’s like a Rosicky to me right now with perhaps better defensive chops and a worse shot. Very brittle.

          The US has a player like that who is arguably better in Stu Holden. Need to stay healthy.


          • Posted by Nelsonaoatl on 2012/06/14 at 9:24 PM

            Goku Stu! I never watched Dragon Ball Z but he definitely looks like it with his hair.

            I regret that I didn’t go to Houston when Stu and Dero played there. Is Holden staying with Bolton?


          • The reason i think Wilshere walks into the Arsenal team is because he is such a good as a one-touch player, and has this calmness in possession. He is still very young, and is hardly Scholes, so perhaps I should pipe down until he’s played more games!


    • Posted by Jared on 2012/06/14 at 6:38 PM

      There was more talent on the Spanish bench than there was on the Irish first 11. This was probably the biggest mismatch you’ll see in the current 16 team Euros. It will get uglier as they expand to 24 in 2016. The 24 team Euros are a terrible idea and will ruin what is currently the best soccer tournament in the world. If it was 24 this year we would have to watch some combination Estonia, Turkey, Armenia, Serbia, Romania, Hungary, Israel, Montenegro, Norway and Scotland (those were either the teams that finished second and lost in playoffs or finished third). Is anyone actually excited (outside of people from those countries or with a familial connection) to see them added to the tournament?

      Copa America could take over as the best tournament if US Soccer would stop being stupid and treat the tournament with respect. If the US and Mexico entered every time instead of it being Mexico and some bizarre combo of the Costa Rican Olympic team/USMNT C team then it would be better than a 24 team Euro.


      • Posted by Ufficio on 2012/06/15 at 4:56 AM

        Well, this Pan American Cup thing could be great if: a) it actually happens and b) everyone takes it seriously.


      • Posted by dth on 2012/06/15 at 7:41 AM

        It’s not a question of US Soccer being stupid, it’s a question of FIFA rules and regulations.

        The Pan American Cup, or whatever it’s called, is pretty much inevitable. Too much money to be made, really.


        • Posted by Mrs. Gomez on 2012/06/15 at 3:25 PM

          I agree with Jared. However, when USMNT sends their A team to Copa America, we will get smoked by Brasil, Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, Chile, and most likely Mexico, too. It would be a great tournament though.

          Its a good thing that USMNT does not have to qualify facing the South American teams or else we would never make it to the World Cup.


          • Posted by dth on 2012/06/15 at 6:10 PM

            I don’t see how there’s a plausible way to agree with Jared’s thesis. The response to any call-up from a European team to a Copa America is “LOL NO.”

            It’s like what happened with Mexico. Earlier they were like, “We’re taking Chicharito to the Olympics.” One talking-to with Ferguson later, and that idea was abandoned.

            So it has nothing to do with US Soccer, however much people would love to have someone to blame. It’s all FIFA rules.


  16. Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/06/14 at 7:35 PM

    Going to be very hard to keep a straight face when I see my Irish colleagues tomorrow, and not mention their elimination from the Euros – just hope it’s not another 24 years before they qualify again. Ha!!


    • Posted by Crow on 2012/06/15 at 5:45 AM

      I wouldn’t gloat too much yet. If England doesn’t advance I think it is worse not getting out of a group with France, Sweden, and Ukraine than it is one with Spain, Italy, and Croatia.


      • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/06/15 at 6:26 AM

        I will not gloat just yet, will wait until the third group game. But there’s a lot of banter going around my office, much of it with a strong anti-England sentiment. So of course I cannot wait to give a little back (with interest!).

        Keep Calm & Carry On.


  17. Posted by GeorgeCross on 2012/06/15 at 7:31 AM

    So a 2-2 draw between Spain and Croatia will see both teams qualify no matter what the result is between Italy and Ireland. Hearing the Italians bleat about match fixing has a perfect symmetry about it, and is highly amusing. How do you say “Pot & Kettle” in Italian?


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