Greece – No crisis talks here
By David, bettingexpert.com | Edited
The Greeks have the privilege to be one of nine nations to have lifted this trophy triumphantly to the air. Rehhagel swerved to that feat in Portugal against the host nation in an uneventful final match. That same lackluster look to the national side has remained but results have alternated since then.
Manager: Fernando Santos
Probable Tactics: 4-3-3
Players To Watch: Karagounis
Current Probable Formation: Sifakis, Papastathopoulos, A. Papadopoulos, K. Papadopoulos, Holebas, Karagounis, Katsouranis, Fotakis, Gekas, Salpigidis, Samaras
Euro 2012 Odds Greece
On the right are odds for the game against Russia.
Euro 2012 Greece Preview
Only due to the troubles within the Croatian squad did Greece have it easy past a qualifying group where no nation could really prove a strong enough challenger. The Greeks have been far from impressive though and at times one should wonder whether the overly defensive style imposed by German manager Rehhagel in the winning 2004 Euro campaign is actually what this side can handle right now.
Very few affirmed talents have emerged from Greek football in recent years and in fact most of the selections by manager Fernando Santos will be made by shuffling through the ranks of the more established Greek clubs.
The economical crisis that swept through Greece will surely not have helped on this front and in general one may doubt how much attention will be given to this competition. However, Greece is a football-loving nation and in my opinion they can only be eager to get distracted by some entertaining on-the-pitch issues. Despite the troubles they are a nation which does know how to fight back from adversity and just like what had happened in Italy after the Calciopoli scandal and their impending 2006 World Cup participation we might be able to expect a surprise from Greece this time around. Besides, there is the chance to meet Germany off the political sphere as well and that will be a curious scenario to behold.
The difference from that Italian side which rose above its troubles in 2006 is still the heavy lack of talent. There are no players who can be of any impact, especially on the attacking front. The defence might have been solid in the qualifying stages but there was no striker who netted more than once over ten qualifying matches. Defenders scored five goals just like the midfielders whilst strikers scored only four in total.
Despite the 4-3-3 formation it is a defensive outlook which Santos goes for. The midfield trio is asked to cover a lot and then restart the game with precise long passing coming from the experienced feet of players like Katsouranis and Karagounis. The midfield should be composed of over 30’s players with Karagounis still the captain of the side.
Gekas, Samaras and Salpigidis take charge of the strike force but neither is the goal scorer who is supported well enough by the team. Perhaps Salpigidis can rise above the rest but all in all the Greek game is oriented towards covering themselves before setting the strikers loose.
Greece 2012 – Defend and counter
With tactics that go back to what Rehhagel left behind before he left, Greece can surprise and take this group by the horns. They still have enough inspired players when compared to other teams in Group A so they should be able to even dominate proceedings. It will be ugly but at least it will be effective.
Euro 2012 Greece Players To Watch
Quite difficult to pin point one player that could make the difference. It might be wise for them to turn to experienced Karagounis for inspiration as he maneuvers in midfield. He should be the player to watch as he should dictate the pace for the Greeks, making this an important tournament before he hangs up his boots probably.
Euro 2012 Betting Greece
Quality is still sparse in Greek football. There was a time when they had more players scattered around in major leagues but now the national side will be completed from the usual teams in the Greek league. It is difficult to imagine where goals will be coming from with consistency and that will be their downfall, yet in Group A there are some soft sides they might be able to surprise with their overly tactical version of the game.
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