The case for backing Germany to fail miserably at Euro 2012
Don’t write off the concept of writing off the Germans…
Germany, Holland or Portugal? At least one of them will be following Sol Campbell’s advice to get out of Ukraine as fast as possible, but who?
The general assumption is that Portugal are the most vulnerable, but never in European Championship history have the striker-dodging Iberians conceded defeat after three games.
They are also “group of death” veterans, surviving Brazil and the ooh ah Cote d’Ivoire at the World Cup and Germany and England at Euro 2000.
Holland are skilled group-stage negotiators too, last heading home from a tournament that swiftly at Euro 1980, a bygone era in which Belgium showcased final-reaching ability.
They can point to the dismissal of World Cup finalists Italy and France at Euro 2008, Argentina and the ooh ah Cote d’Ivoire at World Cup 2006 and Germany and the then-decent Czech Rep at Euro 2004 as evidence of their own immortality when flung in so-called groups of death.
Germany by contrast have fallen foul of the European Championship group stage three times despite being the tournament’s most successful ever team, including on two of the last three occasions that they had made it to the final of the previous edition.
So be warned Germany backers: possible best full back in the world aside, your defence isn’t all that, the heroic Miroslav Klose has been struggling with injuries, you haven’t won or even drawn a match yet in 2012 and half the starting line up have nailed the act of falling by skimpy margins this season.