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Friday, January 27, 2006

"Our qualifying group is unpredictable. It's like our match against Croatia; it started out well but at the end they were killing us."

Whoever made the draw for Euro 2008, he'd better stay out of Scotland for a while. The poor Scots will have to contend with France, Italy and Ukraine while England face such heavyweights as Russia and Croatia - never mind who did the draw, who drew up the seedings? Greece managed to be a top seed, somehow. Okay, they won it last time, but since then they've looked like a pile of leftover moussaka.

The Dutch group is even more of a laugh than Englands: Holland, Romania, Bulgaria, Slovenia, Albania, Belarus and Luxembourg. I hope Robben & Co. enjoy their tour of the best hotels a legacy of state socialism can offer. I see acres of cracked concrete, creaky windows and stained carpets in their future....

Wales and Ireland can kiss their chances goodbye unless the Germans and Czechs decide it's 1938 all over again. And Northern Ireland will be lucky to grab a few points off Liechtenstein and Iceland - if Eidurdona's not playing, anyway.

Sure, it's a couple of years in advance, but TDH is ready to give you the group winners and runners-up right now: Portugal, S & M, France, Italy, Turkey, Norway, Czech Republic, Germany, Sweden, Spain, Holland, England and, for two very different wildcards, Belarus and Israel. Thank goodness the World Cup's coming - what's next is likely to be a snore.


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