Photo of the day

From a recent In Focus photos of the week gallery.  I’m looking forward to the resumption of the Euros today after the short break.  Lots of good games on tap the next few days.

Jan Durica of Slovakia and Artem Dzyuba of Russia battle for possession during the UEFA EURO 2016 Group B match between Russia and Slovakia at Stade Pierre-Mauroy on June 15, 2016, in Lille, France.

Mike Hewitt / Getty

About Steve Greene
Professor of Political Science at NC State

15 Responses to Photo of the day

  1. Mika says:

    I’m glad that Portugal beat Poland yesterday, there’s nothing very exciting in Polish team – Portugal have at least Renato Sanches.

    I hope Wales (Team) beats Belgium (individuals) today. Now they even have a chance since so many Belgian defenders are injured.

    It was great that Italy beat Spain. Simply Italy was so good that it deserved to win and Spain was so bad that it didn’t deserve to win. When it comes Germany – Italy -game I’m pretty neutral. While Italy is tactically excellent they might be at times a bit dull, expect for Antonio Conte. Anyway it’s gonna be a great game, Italy’s two best defending midfielders are out so that might give a slight advantage to Germany.

    I like so many French players that I can’t support Iceland to win even though Iceland’s success has been one of the most pleasing things so far. They have worked very systematically for the last 15-20 years to achieve this level that they did deserve this.

  2. jeffbc94 says:

    Loved seeing Wales continue their magical run, and of course pulling for Iceland to do the same. Can’t root against my German upbringing, and was pretty indifferent about Poland/Portugal.
    I don’t know if Iceland can survive the France-Germany/Italy gauntlet, but my what a story it would be!

  3. Mika says:

    Pepe out is a big blow for Portugal but Ramsay out is a huge blow for Wales, Portugal wins.

    Hummels, Khedira and Gomez are out for sure, maybe even Howedes and Schweini. Can is a good holding midfielder to replace Khedira (and Schweini) but Gomez was their only goalscorer who was in form. Only injury worry for France is Giroud. If he’s ok that’s fine but if he is out France might line-up might 433. Front three could be Payet – Griezmann – Sissoko, not bad at all, but midfield would be even better, Matuidi – Kante – Pogba. I can’t see Gignac starting. On top of those injuries Germany wasn’t very convincing against Italy but France has played better and better. France wins.

    • Steve Greene says:

      I really wish they had cleared yellow cards before last round. Too many good players missing the semifinals.

      • Mika says:

        Maybe not cleared all together but maybe they should raise the number of cards required for suspension to three?

      • Steve Greene says:

        Or that, sure. But the lack of Aaron Ramsey sure affected the game today. And I remember thinking at the time that his 2nd yellow seemed pretty dubious.

      • Mika says:

        I’d like to think that yellow cards and subsequent suspensions save the players from too many reckless tackles. Giving a red card for every reckless tackle would be too much but referees must have a way to say to players “Ok, that’s enough”.

        Ramsay did raise his hand to stop the ball didn’t he? Maybe it was a reflex but right after the incident his body language told that he knew that he made a cardable offence and he’s going to be out of the semifinal. He didn’t even protest the yellow card very much. It wasn’t a professional foul in a sense that he didn’t need to stop the ball but referees must book players for handling the ball deliberately or when it seems like that the handling was deliberate. The name of the game is football ( 🙂 ).

      • Steve Greene says:

        I do believe in punishment for cumulative yellow cards, but I think that expecting a defender to go 5 games with only 1 yellow card is really asking a lot. And, I think there should be allowance for post-match review to contest a yellow card.

      • Mika says:

        Yes and yes. I think that might depend on the organization that is running the competition. At least at Premier League the clubs can contest the red cards so why not extend it to yellow cards.

      • Steve Greene says:

        Yes! Thoughts on yesterday’s game?

      • Mika says:

        Sorry, I noticed this just today. Hmm… Germany needs an out and out striker, they already have enough classy midfielders. I almost think more that Germany lost the game than France won it.

        Today’s game is 0-0 after overtime. Two tired teams have enough energy to defend but not to attack. I’d think the coaches stress the players that they must avoid taking risks. After Germany – Italy penalty shoot out it’s impossible to predict who wins.

      • Steve Greene says:

        Really wanted France to win,but I’ll take a Portugal win with a real goal over a penalty shoot-out any day.

  4. Mika says:

    🙂 The game was in itself so dramatic that it didn’t need a penalty shoot-out.

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