Euro Quarterfinals Game Thread

Zomp

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Today: Portugal v Poland 3pm Eastern
Friday: Wales v Belgium 3pm Eastern
Saturday: Italy vs Germany 3pm Eastern
Sunday: France vs Iceland 3pm Eastern


I'll go with Portugal, Belgium, Germany, France.
 

Dummy Hoy

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I worry today's game takes on the look of Portugal-Croatia. I think the Polish attack and their quick passing and switches could shred the Portuguese back line, but conversely CR and Nani will have enough speed to get behind the Polish back line. I'll assume both coaches tighten up their respective sphincters given the gravity of the situation and focus on clogging everything up. Best thing that could happen would be an early goal either way.

I think Poland is better defensively, and while Portugal did a great job shutting down Croatia, they had a very specific area of the field to shut down (Modric and the middle) whereas Poland will spread things out and switch sides of the field. Poland takes this, hopefully 3-2 not 1-0.

Belgium and France will both face stiffer challenges than expected but will prevail, but I'm not calling the other game. Best team in the world against a well oiled machine functioning at its peak. I mean, Italy kicked the fuck out of Spain. No clue, but I'm very excited to watch it.
 

sachmoney

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Poland's defense has been extremely stingy. They didn't allow a goal in the Group Stage including against Germany. It took a wonder goal from Shaqiri to break through that. Fabianski has been wonderful deputizing Szczesny, though it looks like Woj is back for this game.

It's been Lewandowski and Milik that have struggled. Actually, I've been thoroughly disappointed with Milik's play. He has had many opportunities to finish, but his finishing has left much to be desired. While I don't think that Lewandowski has been great, I don't think that he has had the same opportunities to finish as Milik. Furthermore, I've seen him drop into midfield a lot away from goal. That's not where you want him playing.

I do think that if Poland can create as many changes as Croatia, they will be able to win this game. I've got Poland.

My semifinalists: Poland, Belgium, Germany, France

I've liked Italy a lot this tourney, but I'm not sure they can scrape together enough against the Germans. This is legitimately the first tournament that I've found myself rooting for Italy in games. I'm not rooting for them against Germany, but it's been a strange experience.

I'd love to see the Iceland Cinderella story continue, but France is the first team that they're playing with real quality...

Love to see Wales advance too - should add that Vertonghen may be out since he twisted his ankle in training.
 
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Zososoxfan

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Italy-Germany will be appointment TV. Italy is the most well-coached team in the tournament, but Germany is clearly more talented and while not quite up to Italy's level of organization, likely comes in at second among teams with that level of talent - i.e. I'm willing to admit that Wales, Iceland, and others may be more organized, but among teams with world class talent, Italy is best-organized and Germany is second IMO.
 

SilasCL

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Big trouble for Belgian defense. Vermaelen is suspended and reports are out that Vertonghen badly sprained his ankle in practice and is out for four months.

Their backline is likely to be:
J. Lukaku - Denayer - Alderweireld - Meunier

Wilmots could shake things up and stick a more experienced midfielder back there but I don't think he will do anything that unusual. I still think they'll beat Wales but that is a really shaky back four against some quality attackers in Bale, Ramsey, Robson-Kanu.
 

Infield Infidel

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Not sure they can move a midfielder back, because they only brought 4. Along with 8 forwards (if one thinks England taking 5 forwards was bad, yeesh)

I saw that Ritchie De Laet hasn't played for Belgium since 2009, is he persona non grata? He'd be useful with all the defenders out
 

Gunfighter 09

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I wonder if that means Dembele will play in front of the centerbacks to protect them.
 

teddykgb

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Poland's defense has been extremely stingy. They didn't allow a goal in the Group Stage including against Germany. It took a wonder goal from Shaqiri to break through that. Fabianski has been wonderful deputizing Szczesny, though it looks like Woj is back for this game.

It's been Lewandowski and Milik that have struggled. Actually, I've been thoroughly disappointed with Milik's play. He has had many opportunities to finish, but his finishing has left much to be desired. While I don't think that Lewandowski has been great, I don't think that he has had the same opportunities to finish as Milik. Furthermore, I've seen him drop into midfield a lot away from goal. That's not where you want him playing.

I do think that if Poland can create as many changes as Croatia, they will be able to win this game. I've got Poland.

My semifinalists: Poland, Belgium, Germany, France

I've liked Italy a lot this tourney, but I'm not sure they can scrape together enough against the Germans. This is legitimately the first tournament that I've found myself rooting for Italy in games. I'm not rooting for them against Germany, but it's been a strange experience.

I'd love to see the Iceland Cinderella story continue, but France is the first team that they're playing with real quality...

Love to see Wales advance too - should add that Vertonghen may be out since he twisted his ankle in training.
Milik has been devastatingly wasteful. He's fluffed so many chances. Portugal have struggled to create chances against weaker back lines. I'm rooting for Portugal but if I had to bet I'd bet Poland wins today
 

Dummy Hoy

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Not sure they can move a midfielder back, because they only brought 4. Along with 8 forwards (if one thinks England taking 5 forwards was bad, yeesh)

I saw that Ritchie De Laet hasn't played for Belgium since 2009, is he persona non grata? He'd be useful with all the defenders out
I'd say that depending on the formation, DeBruyne, Hazard, Carrasco, and Mertens could be considered midfielders.

Big loss of Vertonghen...with Vermaelen out I'd guess you see two of Danayer, Lukaku, and Ciman.
 

Nick Kaufman

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I think Portugal have been unlucky against their group opponents and they actually played pretty well. OTOH, said group opponents were pretty weak. So, I don't know what's going to happen, but if someone is looking at their three group draws and their tough/lucky win against Croatia -which did as a result of a specific defense-oriented plan- and they think they re not that good, I think it's a mistaken view.
 

BaseballJones

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He looked a step slow against Spain. It's a bigger issue because Thiago Motta is suspended.
Yeah, that position is going to be a major step down for the Azzurri. Plus, Germany is simply better. They have to be the favorites.

But............

Italy is still going to be a very tough out.
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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Conte is now without his entire first choice midfield - De Rossi, Marchisio, Verratti.

I like Poland in today's game. Portugal hasn't been convincing at all so far. Hopefully we get an early goal that opens up the game as otherwise I envision a cagey 1-0 type match.
 

Ale Xander

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Today: Portugal v Poland 3pm Eastern
Friday: Wales v Belgium 3pm Eastern
Saturday: Italy vs Germany 3pm Eastern
Sunday: France vs Iceland 3pm Eastern


I'll go with Portugal, Belgium, Germany, France.
Portugal 2-0
Belgium 3-1
Germany 3-0
Iceland 1-1, penalties
 
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tbrep

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I think Portugal-Poland may end up 1-1 and head to penalties.
France should win comfortably.
Belgium has the quality to beat Wales but they have to be careful not to get caught out on the break.
Germany-Italy: I have no clue.
 

SoxFanInCali

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Ronaldo's got nearly 40 yards to get the ball up over the wall and back down, and hits it into the wall chest-high.

Never change, Ronnie.
 

Zososoxfan

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Poland looks very organized so far. When the ball is deepest in their defensive zone, they almost drop into 5 or even 6 across the back. When the ball is in the middle third, they are in a typical 4-4-2 with 2 banks of 4. Tactical cam FTW.
 

Cellar-Door

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Ronaldo in major tourneys:
0-41 on shots from DFK. He's a terrible free kick taker that everyone forgets about because he scored 2 good ones in his 10+ year career.
 

teddykgb

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this has been more open than i expected. Portugal's attack remains the same. Wide and cross to Ronaldo. They need to play to feet and try to work a goal but don't seem interested in learning that lesson
 

tbrep

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Unlucky deflection but Portugal deserved that goal - could easily have had a penalty few minutes ago when Ronaldo was pushed to the ground going for a header.
 

tbrep

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Ronaldo's reactions when he feels he's open and been missed are hilarious
 

Cellar-Door

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He's been getting bossed around a bit by some Poles with Old Man Strength, but he is comfoable on the ball and dynamic in the final third. Man U should take a shot at signing him.
Considering he just moved to a better club than Man U I really doubt he's going to be interested.
 

soxfan121

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Ronaldo's reactions when he feels he's open and been missed are hilarious
I know we agreed to call it The Chrissy Fit Award, but can anyone else really win it? No one, no one is more consistent. The man brings the whine on every ball in his area code.
 

teddykgb

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i can't believe they didn't fix McManaman's hair during the commercial break. Maybe the production crew just hates him like everyone else