Euro 2008: Portugal vs. Czech Republic (Matchday Commentary)

Euro 2008: Portugal vs. Czech Republic (Matchday Commentary)

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Euro 2008: Portugal vs. Czech Republic (Matchday Commentary)

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Hello everybody. Today marks the second phase of group matches, with Portugal and the Czech Republic facing off with the winner clinching a quarterfinal place.

Portugal looked extremely impressive in beating Turkey, 2-0, in their opener while the Czechs struggled and were probably outplayed in their 1-0 opening win against Switzerland.

I will be doing a running commentary throughout the match so please feel free to follow the match action here. Share your thoughts and opinions on the match in the comments section below.

Enjoy the soccer and follow the match commentary after the jump:

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FINAL- PORTUGAL 3, Czech Republic 1. Ronaldo is the star today, starting the first goal, scoring the second goal and setting up the third. And Portugal is on the doorstep of qualifying.

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92nd minute- The Czechs were caught napping and get burned on the counter as Ronaldo has a hand in his third goal of the day. Portugal 3, Czech Republic 1.

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91st minute- GOAL PORTUGAL!!!! Ronaldo breaks in on the goal and then lays off to a wide-open Quaresma. This one is over.

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90th minute- The Czechs get another free kick chance but Ricardo punches out of danger and Portugal is close to a second victory.

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84th minute- Portugal dodges a bullet after a Sionko header forces a save. Portugal looks a bit shaky right now.

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80th minute- Ricardo Quaresma comes on for Simao. Wow, not a bad sub huh.

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79th minute- Almeida on for the ageless Nuno Gomes. Seriously, does Gomes look any different from 2002?

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77th minute- Simao wastes the free kick, hitting it into the wall

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76th minute- Portugal with a very dangerous free kick chance.

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74th minute- Not sure why the announcers keep saying that a win here puts Portugal in good shape for qualifying for the quarters. A win means qualification for the quarters. Why? Well, since head-to-head is the first tie-breaker, there’s no way a team can have two wins and not finish in the top two. I’m pretty sure it’s mathematically impossible.

Koller on for Galasek for the Czechs and Fernando Meira coming in for Moutinho for Portugal.

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72nd minute- And here comes Koller. Frankenstein is getting ready.

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70th minute- Surprising not to see Koller get into this match yet.

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69th minute- This game just feels like it will end up a tie on another Czech free kick header.

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64th minute- Deco with the perfect pass, slides a ball right into Ronaldo’s path and he bashes a right-footed blast by a helpless Peter Cech.

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63rd minute- GOAL PORTUGAL and who else but CRISTIANO RONALDO!!! What a blast. Portugal 2, Czech Republic 0.

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63rd minute- WOW. The Czechs got so close. Perfect corner but the Czech runners on the back post got there a step late. Should have been a goal.

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62nd minute- The Czechs are knocking on the door again, corner kick.

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58th minute- Ronaldo has had a frustrating day, with Czech defenders not letting him run by and chances tough to come by.

CECH with a great save on Simao. NICE.

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55th minute- Portugal gets in as Gomes breaks on goal, but his shot his blocked for a corner. Almost a terrible mistake by the Czech defense.

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52nd minute- The Czechs are not sitting back for the tie. They’re not that creative going forward but the effort is there. Portugal has had more possession this half but they can’t find the pass to crack the Czech defense.

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47th minute- The ref isn’t going for any dives here, letting them play.

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47th minute- And we’re back. Portugal with the early possession.

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HALFTIME- Portugal has had the better of the play but the Czechs haven’t exactly been sitting back like the Greeks. Portugal has to show some patience in its build-ups because it will need time to breakdown the Czechs’ 4-5-1.

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45th minute- A Ronaldo free kick forces a save from Cech and there’s a final whistle. It’s halftime.

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45th minute- Paulo Ferreira took a knock in the eye and is getting treatment.

Good first half, end to end stuff. Okay, so maybe it’s Portugal attacking and the Czechs defending, but still good stuff.

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43rd minute- Moutinho just hasn’t looked good for Portugal. Wouldn’t shock me if he got subbed off at halftime.

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42nd minute- Ronaldo with a beautiful blast but Cech makes an even better diving save on it.

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41st minute- Disciplined defending by the Czechs all over the field.

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40th minute- Other than Baros, the Czech attack just hasn’t looked that impressive today.

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37th minute- I know it’s been said but the Czechs definitely miss Tomas Rosicky.

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34th minute- Ronaldo isn’t having an easy time and is getting beat up every time he gets the ball. Well, except for when he set up Portugal’s goal that is.

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32nd minute- Cristiano Ronaldo is wearing green boots today. Could that represent the mountain of cash he’s going to be standing on after the tournament once he goes to Real Madrid? Just a thought.

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31st minute- Jose Bosingwa with a nice sequence, at least before he got a yellow for a tackle.

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29th minute- Wow, Portugal got lucky as a Czech corner kick fell into the area and should have led to at least a shot on goal.

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28th minute- The Czechs are doing well defensively but as soon as they get into their attack they just lose it or waste it with a bad pass.

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26th minute- Portugal’s offense isn’t moving as well as it was early on. The Czechs are making things tough and the Portuguese almost look timid.

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22nd minute- I was wondering where Czech goals would come from. Set pieces are a good place to start but they still need to create some chances in the run of play.

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20th minute- How will Portugal respond? The crowd is definitely in favor of the Czechs right now.

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18th minute- Sionko raced in and just powered the header past Ricardo. We’re tied 1-1 and this game just got interesting.

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17th minute- GOAL CZECH REPUBLIC!!! Libor Sionko with a crashing header off a corner kick.

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12th minute- The Czechs are struggling to do anything through central midfield, relying on the wings instead, which I can’t see working against Portugal.

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9th minute- Ronaldo gets into the area on a give-and-go, forcing Cech out to stop him. The rebound falls to Deco, who slots home from close range.

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8th minute- GOAL PORTUGAL!!! DECO finishes off a great run in by Ronaldo. Portugal 1, Czech Republic 0.

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4th minute- It will be interesting to see how Milan Baros does today. He gets the start ahead of Jan Koller today.

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3rd minute– We’re under way and the Czechs are already pushing Portugal around. Going to be a physical battle today.

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