Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Euro 2016 - Ronaldo to the fore

It is not a surprise that Portugal are struggling at these Euros; they've been relying heavily on Ronaldo and when he's not on firing terms, so do they. Portugal has been blessed by great players over the past years, have had their "golden generation" but have never brought home the bacon. The way they are playing, I don't expect this to change. However, they are talented enough to see through this rather mediocre Group F. I expect them to overcome Hungary and it would be no surprise to anyone that Ronaldo finally makes his breakthrough. The superstar has been very quiet in the first 2 matches, much evidently in the last match against Austria where he missed a string of good chances and a penalty on top of that. The fact that they created good enough opportunities against a decent Austrian team makes me think that they just need adjustments in a few areas and some luck to turn things around. Hungary beat Austria against the run of play in their first match but their fortuitous draw against Iceland shows that they are for the taking. Portugal should win this match and go through.

In the other Group F match, I expect the Austrians to narrowly edge the valiant Icelanders.

Italy must rue their bad luck; having won their first 2 matches, they are playing for nothing against Ireland before meeting mighty Spain in the next round. Manager Conte will definitely ring the changes for the match against the Irish and preserve some legs for the Spaniards. Ireland face a do-or-die situation here but I don't think they are at a level to beat an even under-par Italy. This match could very well end in a draw.

Sweden meet Belgium in what could very well be Zlatan's last match for the Swedes. Belgium came up all firing against the Irish and if they keep the momentum, they should have no trouble dispatching the Swedes. I think that is the likeliest outcome and the Red Devils should sail through the next round with renewed confidence.

Win: Portugal, Belgium, Austria

No comments:

Post a Comment