Sunday, June 08, 2008

Portugal 2 - 0 Turkey

Hey Peeps and anyone else checking in. A special "Hey" goes out to Hazel Mae, who likely isn't sitting in front of her HD TV watching Euro 2008...but she gets a pass.

A just result on yesterday's opening day of the big tournament. Portugal, favoured going into the game against Turkey, scored two second half goals - defender Pepe in the 61st minute, and substitute midfielder Raul Meireles in the 93rd minute.

The Quinas dominated the game and probably should have had at least four, if not more, goals - while there is much to be happy about, the lack of finishing is cause for some concern. The silver lining is that Portugal dominated a game in which their superstar, Cristiano Ronaldo, was not the dominant player on the pitch. Pepe, playing in his first international tournament for Portugal, was a champ at both ends of the pitch - scoring a first half goal that was called back for offside. Simao, who played the wing opposite Ronaldo was a threat all night - I would have included him in the Quinas/Red Sox comparison, but that would have necessitated posting a pitch of Youkilis (and NO ONE needs to see that mug any more than they already do).

While Pepe and Simao starred for Portugal - the third star has to go to the German referee Herbert Fandel who called an excellent game by asserting his leadership early on. Under Fandel's watchful eye, a few early dives (both ways) were not rewarded with free kicks - Fandel also used his judgment in letting the play move on after a foul (playing "advantage"). The only drawback in Fandel's game was that he was so conscious to diving (encouraged by Turkish fans who booed everytime someone fell) missed a red card at the end of the game, when Turkish defender Aurelio went cleats first on a vicious challenge against Nani.

All in all though - a very good start to the tournament.

The Goal

The celebration

The celebration II

2-1 last night, meaning 6-1 on the week - the weekend ends off on a great note with a few winners.

Toronto over Baltimore - Roy Halladay will not allow the Jays to be swept at home...not to the Orioles. Lay $100 on the Jays - $240.

Cincinnati over Florida - go with Aaron Harang (no "atang" jokes) to beat the Marlins today. Lay $100 on the Reds - $123.

Kansas City over NY Yankees - upset special. Go with Greinke, who has been very good this season, over Joba Chamberlain who is on a pitch count and may be out of the game by the 4th inning. Lay $100 on the Royals + $175.

For those of you betting Euro - Crotia and Germany are pretty well locks.

That's it for today gang - no use talking about AJ Burnett's meltdown at the Rogers Centre yesterday...let's just say it may be time for another installment of the Champs and Chumps entry. Have a great one.

Song of the day - for the "Dance with the Portuguese" promo on TSN and ESPN.

O Pezinho - Amalia Rodrigues (the incomparable Amalia I should add).

Hazel, here's hoping things are groovy in your world.

I'm Out


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