Daily Archives: June 19, 2012

Spain 1-0 Croatia: Navas snatches late winner

“Spain played an extremely cautious game, but won after Croatia pushed forward. Vicente Del Bosque kept the same starting XI, meaning Fernando Torres again spearheaded the attack. Slaven Bilic made various changes, effectively using a version of the 4-2-3-1 system he finished the Italy game with. Domagoj Vida started at right-back, pushing Darijo Srna forward to the right of midfield. Danijel Pranjic started on the left, with Luka Modric as the number ten. Nikica Jelavic and Ivan Perisic were only substitutes.” Zonal Marking

Spain still uncertain, even in win
“Spain progressed into the elimination stage after a slender 1-0 victory in a game which veered from the sterile to the dramatic. As the score in the Italy versus Ireland match heightened the suspense, both Spain and Croatia knew a single goal could carry them through at their opponent’s expense. Croatia’s passionate football may not have caused Spanish fans’ hearts to enter their mouths, but they were made to beat with an irregular rhythm like their team’s strangely out-of-sorts midfield.” ESPN

Navas scores late to secure Spain’s Group C win at Euro 2012
“Jesus Navas scored a late goal Monday to give Spain a 1-0 win over Croatia and a spot in the European Championship quarterfinals. Andres Iniesta passed to Navas inside the area after Spain broke through an offside trap, and the substitute forward kicked the ball into an empty net in the 88th minute.” SI

Proud night for Italy

“The ghosts of 2004 can now be laid to rest. Italy was made to work hard in its Group C finale with Ireland, but in the end, the Azzurri got the result they needed, prevailing 2-0 on goals by Antonio Cassano and substitute Mario Balotelli. A 2-2 draw in the other match between Spain and Croatia would have still seen Italy eliminated, but La Roja came through with a 1-0 victory, and the Italians were left to celebrate their progression to the quarterfinals.” ESPN (Video)

Cassano, Balotelli guide Italy to quarter with 2-0 win over Ireland
“Italy qualified for the quarterfinals of the European Championship after Antonio Cassano and Mario Balotelli scored in each half in a tense 2-0 victory over Ireland on Monday. Cassano headed in with his back to the goal by the near post following a corner kick in the 35th minute on a warm and muggy night at the Municipal Stadium Poznan.” SI

Euro 2012: Free Mario Balotelli!

“Or at least let him speak his mind! On Monday, the Italian striker scored his second-ever goal for Italy, roasting Ireland defender John O’Shea with a volleyed hit to put Italy up, 2-0, on Ireland, in stoppage time, and secure their passage to the Euro 2012 quarterfinals out of Group C. The above image is of Italy defender Leonardo Bonucci supressing Mario’s right to free speech, covering the Manchester City madman’s mouth with his hand to stop him from getting in some kind or all kinds of trouble.” Grantland (Video)