25 JUNE 2000
LATE MISSES HAUNT SPAIN
FRANCE 2-1 SPAIN
Zidane 32 Mendieta 38 (Pen)
France wasted two early chances - Viera heading over from Zidane's free kick
and the technically and gravity challenged Dugarry heading over a superb left
footed cross by Deschamps. Guardiola tried to catch out Barthez with a
free kick from an improbable angle but the bald midget got across to punch
the ball over for a corner. Barthez made another spectacular save from Raul's
excellent first time shot. Munitis, who made Thuram look ordinary all night,
turned inside him but shot wide. Zidane blew a 100% chance when slipped in
by Dugarry, kicking fresh air with his left foot. Zidane shot France into the
lead with a fabulous dipping, curling free kick. Thuram brought down Munitis
in the box, penalty. Mendieta sent Barthez the wrong way. Viera picked up the
ball on the half way line, drove forward, rode a tackle from Abelardo and then
gave Djorkaeff a beautifully weighted pass, Djorkaeff slammed the ball inside
Canizares' post, excellent first time shot.
Alfonso wasted a great chance from Munitis' cross when a miserable first
touch allowed Barthez to save. Viera had France's best chance of the second
half following a tremendous run by Zidane but Salgado bravely threw himself
at a ferocious shot. Barthez spilled Thuram's back pass, Abelardo went for the
loose ball so did Barthez, Abelardo fell down, penalty. If Collina thinks
Barthez fouled Abelardo (he didn't) why didn't he send him off? Justice was
served as Raul stepped up and curled the ball over the bar, Spain's regular
penalty taker, Mendieta, having already been substituted. Urzaiz missed an
open goal seconds later, Alfonso with the perfect cross.
The second half mirrored most of France's performances so far, after going
into the lead they were content to sit back and this time they were almost
punished for it. It would be nice to see them build on a lead instead of
playing like Italy. Munitis did an absolute number on Thuram.
Man Of The Match - Zidane
Assists : Djorkaeff, Munitis, Viera to Djorkaeff
KLUIVERT RUNS OVER YUGOSLAVIA
HOLLAND 6-1 YUGOSLAVIA
Kluivert 24, 38, 54 Milosevic 90
Overmars 78, 90
The first chance fell to Yugoslavia, Stam missed a long ball down the left
wing, Milosevic ran onto it, turned inside Frank de Boer and squared a
perfect ball to Mijatovic who took way to long to shoot and Van der Sar
saved. The next 75 minutes it was all Holland. Kralj saved brilliantly from
Bergkamp, Kluivert wasted an Overmars cross, Bergkamp shot weakly at Kralj
after Davids stole a ball in defence, Bergkamp then returned the favour with
a superb ball over the top and Davids ballooned a shot over the bar when one
on one with the 'keeper. The Dutch were finally rewarded mid-way through the
first half, Bergkamp crossed to Kluivert who killed the ball with a superb
first touch, Kralj made a half arsed challenge and Kluivert poked the ball
into an empty net. David's stuck a ball over the top and just as the ball
dropped Kluivert volleyed past Kralj, beautiful Van Basten like finish.
Govedarica turned Bosvelt's cross past his own 'keeper, Kluivert even
admitted this in an interview but it looks like he will be credited with
the goal. No doubt about Holland's fourth, Zenden centered for Kluivert
to tap in his fourth. Kluivert was substituted and Overmars bagged a couple
of goals. He flicked up Bergkamp's cross and hammered a left foot volley
past Kralj and then scored a tap-in after Cocu smashed a shot off the post.
Mijatovic cracked a fantastic volley off the underside of the crossbar and
Milosevic slotted the ball under substitute 'keeper Westerveld.
Ok Holland were great but Yugoslavia's 'defending' was the absolute shits.
Man Of The Match - Kluivert, this one is a no brainer.
Assists : Bergkamp to Kluivert, Davids to Kluivert, Zenden to Kluivert,
Bergkamp to Overmars
24 JUNE 2000
FIGO DESTROYS TURKS
PORTUGAL 2-0 TURKEY
Nuno Gomes 44, 56
Ogun headed Figo's corner straight to the feet of Costinha, certain goal so
you would think but Rustu managed to hurl himself across goal to block the
shot. Couto landed on Alpay when challenging for a cross, Alpay pushed his
chest, Couto went down clutching his face, red card. Figo swung in corner,
Rustu came out and completely missed the ball fortunately for him Costinha
headed wide. Figo's cross took a deflection off Unsal and Nuno Gomes
met it with a spectacular diving header. Rui Costa ghosted past several
players and cut a perfect ball back for Joao Pinto who shot spectacularly
wide. Turkey were awarded a penalty when Couto 'fouled' Arif. Arif stepped
up and shot weakly at Baia.
Baia came out for a corner, dropped the ball and Tayfur missed an open goal.
Figo gift wrapped Nuno Gomes a second goal after smoking Unsal on the right,
Unsal stupidly diving as Figo went past him looking for a free kick. Figo,
Nuno Gomez and Joao Pinto all went close before Jorge Costa showed
outstanding technique by managing to shoot wide when standing on the
Loads of diving and playacting in this match. Portugal stopped trying after
going two goals up and other than a brief spell, ironically when Turkey went
down to ten men, they were never threatened.
Man Of The Match : Figo
Assist : Figo to Nuno Gomez
Red Card : Alpay 29 (Turkey)
ALBERTINI INSPIRES ITALY!
ITALY 2-0 ROMANIA
Inzaghi shot wide following a quick passing move involving Albertini, Totti
and Fiore. Poor defending from a free kick gave Italy the lead, Fiore
brilliantly cushioned Ciobotariu's slack header into Totti's path, Totti
chested the ball down and volleyed past Stelea. Romania went within inches
of scoring an immediate equaliser, Muta picked out Hagi with a phenomenal
60yd pass, Toldo charged off his line, Hagi chipped him but the ball hit the
inside of the post and Iuliano cleared. Totti wasted a great chance when
played in by Zambrotta. Albertini should have been sent off for going through
the back of Hagi. Galca volleyed wide from the resulting free kick. Albertini
released Inzaghi with an excellent first time pass, the Romanian defence stood
still appealing for offside allowing Inzaghi to run through and pick his
Hagi ended his international career by picking up two yellow cards, he should
have been sent off for trying to snap Conte's ankle with a murderous foul
but escaped with a yellow. He earned his second yellow for diving in the box.
The Italians made two excellent goal saving blocks from Ganea and Ciobotariu.
Albertini picked out Inzaghi with a superb ball over the top, Inzaghi killed
the ball and smashed a shot goalwards but Stelea made a fantastic save,
tipping the shot onto a post. The two combined again, Albertini with another
superb ball over the top but this time Inzaghi shot hopelessly wide.
Man Of The Match - Albertini. I never thought I'd see the day Albertini gave
a World Class performance.
"Albertini's played more telling balls in this period, in what the last half hour
than I think I've seen him in about five seasons."
Assists : Fiore to Totti, Albertini to Inzaghi
Red Card : Hagi 59 (Romania)