Thursday, March 29, 2007

Serbia VS Portugal 1:1

Yesterday's EURO 2008 qualifying game of the day, Serbia against Portugal ended in a 1:1 draw. The game was played in a wonderful soccer atmosphere in Serbia's capital Belgrade's stadium "Marakana". A little off subject, but miraculously there were no incidents with fans. 55,000 Serbian fans came to support their nation against arguably, the best national team in Europe (Portugal).

Portugal drew first blood as Chelsea's former midfielder, now playing for Olympique Lyon Tiago, scored a beautiful goal from about 35 meters in the 5th minute. Serbia's goalkeeper Stojkovic got caught being too much in front of the goal an so Portugal were winning 1:0. This early goal was like a motivation booster for the Serbs as the rest of the first half belonged to them. As a result of great will and hard work Serbia equalized in the 37th minute from Stankovic's corner kick being blasted in the net by Bosko Jankovic's powerful header. When Serbia equalized, the stadium went euphoric as 55,000 fans sounded like 550,000 fans.

The second half belonged more to Portugal as they had a few chances. However, Serbian goalkeeper Vladimir Stojkovic saved the day with a few great saves. Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo had no chance with his trickeries against Serbia's Igor Duljaj who marked him very well. All in all, the game was played with fast pace, a lot of attacking and a lot of heart was left by both sides. Serbia and Portugal demonstrated today how soccer should be played. Both, Serbia and Portugal along with Finland have 11 points and are behind Poland who have 16 points. Poland has played an extra game. There are many games left and I think that the race for EURO 2008 will be till the end as Group A could be the "group of death".

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