Euro 2012: Guide to Group B
Friday 02 December 2011
Following the draw for the group stage of Euro 2012, we guide you through the four teams comprising Group B.
FIFA Ranking: 2
Manager: Bert van Marwijk
He made his name at Feyenoord winning the Dutch league and UEFA Cup before moving on to manage Borussia Dortmund. After struggling to find success in Germany he moved back to Feyenoord, wining the Dutch cup. He was then appointed manager of Holland in 2008, leading them to the World Cup final in 2010 and to second in the current world rankings.
Captain: Mark van Bommel
The experienced midfielder has played for his country 71 times, making his debut in 2000. He has had a hugely successful club career playing for the likes of Barcelona, Bayern Munich and AC Milan and winning the league for every club he has played for as well as winning the Champions League in 2006 with Barcelona. Would love to lead his team to victory after being on the losing side of the 2010 World Cup final.
Top Scorer in Qualifying: Klass-Jan Huntelaar (12 goals)
How Qualified: Group E winners
Euro Best: Champions 1988
Recent Form: LDLWWWDDWW
Danger Man: Robin van Persie
The unplayable striker is in the form of his life this season at Arsenal. If he can maintain his level of performances, and more importantly, stay fit until the end of the season then he could be one of the stars of the tournament. Scored six goals in six games in qualification.
Young Gun: Kevin Strootman
13 October 1993
Holland 2-0 England
Graham Taylor lost his job on the back of this defeat. As a documentary team followed his every movement on the touchline, including the disgust shown at Ronald Koeman's opener, after the Dutch captain should have been dismissed for a pulling down David Platt when through on goal, before Dennis Bergkamp sealed the result.
FIFA Ranking: 11
Manager: Morten Olsen
The only man to play for and manage his country over 100 times, Olsen is a vastly experienced coach. Having previously won two league titles with Brondby and the double with Ajax, he has now been in charge of Denmark for more than ten years.
Captain: Daneil Agger
Top Scorer in Qualifying: Dennis Rommedahl and Nicklas Bendtner (3 goals)
How Qualified: Group H winners
Euro Best: Champions 1992
Recent Form: WWWWWLWWDL
Danger Man: Nicklas Bendtner
Nicklas Bendtner is the focal point in attack for a team that is difficult to beat and conceded just six goals on their way to topping their qualification group ahead of Portugal and Norway. Bendtner may not be setting the world alight for Sunderland but he scored three crucial goals to help his country secure qualification.
Young Gun: Christian Eriksen
20 September 1978
England 4-3 Denmark
Two headers from the diminutive Kevin Keegan set England on the way to victory. The Danes get back to equal terms, but a Bob Latchford goal put his side back on top, with Phil Neal adding a fourth, before Denmark reduced the arrears late on.
FIFA Ranking: 3
Manager: Joachim Louw
The stylish German boss has led his side to a final and semi-final in his two major tournaments, losing to Spain on both occasions. Low has overseen a seamless transition from an aging side into a youthful one and, having won all of their qualifiers, they will be hoping to go one better in the summer.
Captain: Phillip Lahm
One of the best full-backs in world football, Lahm can play on either side and took over the national captaincy from Michael Ballack prior to the 2010 World Cup. The Bayern Munich defender has an almost flawless record as captain, having won every qualifier and only lost to Spain in the World Cup semi-final.
Top Scorer in Qualifying: Miroslav Klose (8 goals)
How Qualified: Group A winners
Euro Best: Champions 1972, 1980, 1996
Recent Form: WDWWDWWWWW
Danger Man: Mesut Ozil
In a team full of stars, Ozil contributed five goals and seven assists as Germany won ten games out of ten to qualify with ease. The 23-year-old has also developed into a key figure in Real Madrid's star-studded midfield and will relish leading his country's charge against many of his team-mates in the summer.
Young Gun: Mario Gotze
30 July 1996
England 4-2 West Germany
The most famous of all England matches, saw them defeat their arch enemy to win the World Cup. A hat-trick from Geoff Hurst and one from Martin Peters gave England the win. It went to extra-time, including Hurst's infamous 'did it, didn't it' goal, which was awarded by the linesman, before scoring again in the final minute, as fans ran onto the pitch in celebration.
FIFA Ranking: 7
Manager: Paulo Bento
An important player in his time, playing for both Benfica and Sporting Lisbon. He is relatively un-experienced as a manager at the age of 42, managing just Sporting Lisbon, where he won two Portuguese cups, before being appointed Portugal manager in 2010.
Captain: Cristiano Ronaldo
Top Scorer in Qualifying: Cristiano Ronaldo (5 Goals)
How Qualified: Playoffs (v Bosnia & Herzegovina)
Euro Best: Runners Up 2004
Recent Form: WDLWWWWWDL
Danger Man: Cristiano Ronaldo
The captain will be desperate to shine on the world stage after his sub-standard performances in South Africa. Paulo bento will pray he can translate his club form onto the international stage as he has been in lethal form for Real Madrid this season with 20 goals already.
Young Gun: Fabio Coentrao
24 June 2004
Portugal 2-2 England (Portugal won 6-5 on pens)
Like in most international tournaments, England bowed out at the quarter-final stage. Michael Owen scored in the third minute, but Tottenham flop, Helder Postiga, equalised to force extra-time. Rui Costa's strike was cancelled out by Frank Lampard late on. In the shootout Darius Vassell missed in sudden death, allowing keeper, Ricardo, to score the winner.
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