Euro 2004...

Well, the playoffs, after a series of shocks in the first leg, ended up finishing almost entirely by the form book...I'm sure that FIFA and all those federations that fixed the draw are happy. ::smirk::

Holland 6-0 Scotland (Holland wins 6-1 on aggregate)

Well, I had the concept right, anyway. I knew Scotland was going to get a reality check, I knew the Dutch would bring down great vengeance upon them...but I don't think anyone expected a shitkicking of this magnitude. Van Divingprick hit for a hat trick, and that was basically that. I hate to say that Scotland folded, because they showed so much spirit to win in Glasgow. Perhaps it's better to say that they wandered on the tracks when the train came through.

Slovenia 0-1 Croatia (Croatia win 2-1 on aggregate)

This tie all came down to red-hot Dado Prso. He hit for...five, I think in Monaco's 8-3 demolition of Deportivo la Coruna in the Champions' League, and he ended up netting both for Croatia over the two legs. Besides the fact that I'm down with ANYONE who has long hair in 2003, he's scoring at will right now. I wouldn't be surprised to see him in a much bigger club's uniform come the January transfer window. It's kind of a shock that Slovenia didn't get a draw at least on their own patch, but then again, they may be going through what Portugal will after Euro 2004: A great team that all got old at the same time.

Wales 0-1 Russia (Russia wins 1-0 on aggregate)

Now THIS was a shock, especially because Ryan Giggs was fit enough to make the starting 11. After getting the draw in Moscow, I would have bet my last 5 dollars (I think the 5 dollars in my wallet IS my last 5 dollars, but I digress) that the Welsh would have come away with the victory. However, Russia are one of those sides that, despite being very good, tend to sneak up on people. You never think of them in the same breath as the elite teams in Europe, but they always do the business against teams they should beat. Wales has nothing to be ashamed about, though...they've got some good young players, and they've gone from perennial doormat to a side that you can NEVER take lightly...and they should hold their heads up proudly just for that alone.

Norway 0-3 Spain (Spain wins 5-1 on aggregate)

I was kind of shocked by this too, because I rated Norway a little better than this. However, I saw the highlights, and from what I could gather, Norway was an absolute shambles in the backline. They basically gave away all three goals, the last one on an absolute howler by their goalkeeper. I also had banked on Spain imploding as usual, but it's only now that I remember that they usually wait until AFTER they qualify for a major finals before doing so. Heh.

And, one more time:

Turkey 2-2 Latvia (Latvia wins 3-2 on aggregate)

If you will...indulge me one more time.


OK...I'm done. I just especially love justice being served.


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