Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Portugal-Finland, Euro 2008: Another Elimination Game

Is Portugal primed for a major upset and an exit visa right out of Euro 2008? The team hosts Finland today. A tie gets them in behind Poland. A loss and a Serbia loss by a bunch to Poland and Finland has a puncher's chance of getting in.
Finland, however, cannot score goals despite Jari Litmanen and Sami Hyypiä prominent on the field for the Finns. Finland tied Portugal 1-1 in their first meeting during qualification. Most recently, the Finns beat Azerbaijan 2-1 after three straight 0-0 ties.
Portugal, meanwhile, has won three straight after a rough patch of draws, a loss to Poland and the suspension of coach Luis Filipe Scolari after taking a punch at a Serbian player during a 1-1 tie in July.
Portugal's success has been in spite of a rash of injuries, especially on the back line, to Ricardo Carvalho, Miguel and Paolo Ferreira.
Finland coach Roy Hodgson told
"We will try to defend well and score when we have a chance. I know this sounds dull but that's the best answer I have. I am very confident that we are capable of fighting for a win and will not be nervous. The task is tough but I believe in my team. They are up to it."

No comments: