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Surviving the Group of Death

Odds & News | AL ( Mon 18th, June 2012 )

As one of the most important tournaments in the Soccer universe, the European Championship

Brings exciting matches between all the big teams around the continent. This time, the Euro 2012 is held at Poland-Ukraine, and it promises a huge amount of entertainment and masterly soccer. The teams are divided in four groups of four, each one giving the best as they climb to reach the finals and prove which one has the best soccer of Europe. This year, the group B is particularly interesting, and is also known as the "Group of Death" due to the teams that content inside of it.

Powerhouses as Germany, Netherland, Denmark and Portugal battle in this group, at the moment, the lead has been taken by the Germans who play a clean and mindful game, focused on the task more than the flashy performances made by Portugal. Denmark is tough and has proven to be a rough contender for the other teams as they already has beaten Netherlands and almost take down Portugal. Right now, Netherlands is taking the pounding, and has become the weak team of the group B, even if they are still in the fight, almost only a miracle can save the Clockwork Orange. Since the beginning of the tournament the group almost was unpredictable; right now with the current results you may pick the top team, however each team still can make it to the final phases.

Germany clearly had the upper hand on this group, they still had the steel and wits to make it to the finals, and they have the fuel to claim championship. They have won the first two matches, but they still need one more victory to secure their standings at the top of the group. It takes too much effort to defeat the German Squad, so I think this would be an easy goal to achieve; they have proven to be the strongest contender through two games with just tripped little against Netherlands thanks to Robin van Persie right foot. Their defense is strong, as they didn't let Portugal do their damage.

Denmark take down Netherlands on the starter game, the Danes have some hidden potential as they made 2 goals against Portugal, however their defense clearly have some gaps as they lose 3-2 and barely held against a team who could have done more damage if Cristiano Ronaldo weren't so poor on his performance. Denmark offensive is strong and capable but if they want to keep in the game they must improve their defense; however, they will have a rough ride against Germany.

Portugal has a big problem; it seems that the team depends too much on Cristiano Ronaldo for their strategy; which make it easier for Germany to realize that if they wanted to win, it was as simple as blocking Ronaldo. The lesson was a hard hit, but Portugal learned to trust in the other talents on their roster as was proven in the game against Denmark, in which they get three goals and none were made by Ronaldo but by other players as Helder Postiga, Pepe and Silvestre Varela. Still, Portugal has a big chance to head into the final game of the group stages, and if Ronaldo reach his full potential, then it will become a tough team to deal with.

Netherlands are in bad shape right now; they haven't shown a full force in the previous games and will require a great effort by their offensive players to make their team climb to the group stage finals. Even with the help of Arjen Robben, Wesley Sneijder and Robin van Persie, the "Het Nederlands Elftal" is missing that spice they had on 2010 world cup. Maybe is a lack of coordination, or missing chemistry among their roster, they are still alive, and they are capable to beat Portugal that is almost "weaker" than the expected; but you can't count them as finishers if they don't win against Portugal by two goals, which is their only hope to not be sent home earlier.

In fact is quite more complex, but in resume, Nehterlands must beat Portugal by two goals, and Denmark has to lose against Germany, then the "Oranje" will advance because they will be the only team with a plus-one differential goal in the matches between the other three teams and will fire up a tiebreaker. If Netherlands win by only one game, then they will be eliminated, and then the other teams will be measured by the higher number of goals scored in the matches among the teams left... and simply get even more complex afterwards.

...Sorry, but trying to survive doesn't mean that they will make it.

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