The Euro2012 playbook will bring all the popular formations from the matches into FMH2012 for iOS and Android. Want to know how an upset was cause and to use it in FMH? I will do this.
08/06 - Group A: Russia's 4123 (v Czech Republic)
09/06 - Group B: Denmark's 4231 (v Holland)
10/06 - Group C: Italy's 352 (v Spain)
10/06 - Group C: Croatia's 4132 (v Ireland)
11/06 - Group D: Ukraine's 442 (v Sweden)
13/06 - Group B: Portugal's 433 (v Denmark)
13/06 - Group B: Germany's 4231 (v Holland)
14/06 - Group C: Spain's 433 (v Ireland)
15/06 - Group D: France's 4231 (v Ukraine)
15/06 - Group D: England's 4222 (v Sweden)
16/06 - Group A: Greece's 4231 (v Russia)
16/06 - Group A: Czech Republic's 4231 (v Poland)
17/06 - Group B: Portugal's 4321 (v Holland)
21/06 - Quarter Final: Portugal's 433 (v Czech Republic)
22/06 - Quarter Final: Germany's 4231 (v Greece)
23/06 - Quarter Final: Spain's 460 (v France)
28/06 - Semi Final: Italy's 4132 (v Germany)
01/07 - Final: Spain's 460 (v Italy) - Below.
01/07 – Final: Spain v Italy
Spain have looked very lacklustre and uncharacteristic so far but somehow managed to get to the final by winning all their games but 2 (1-1 v Italy and a 0-0 penalty win v rivals Portugal), during this they conceded only 1 goal in which showed Spain’s defensive capabilities not just their passing and attacking ones.
The final was a rematch of the 1-1 opener that was tactically the most interesting of the tournament (Spain’s 460 v Italy’s 352). Italy have now changed to a 4132; in which has been performing better for the Italians, however De Bosque lined up with the exact same Spanish side that faced Italy the first time around. It was the Spanish who started the brighter and perhaps uncharacteristically their passing had more purpose with them choosing not to go from side to side but actually forward too! The Italians looked weak and tired compared to the Spanish whose schedule was noticeably lighter in the run up to the final. The energy from Spain was incomparable to the rest of the games they played and a nice passing move left Fabregas able to beat make-shift left back Chillieni with ease and dink it into Silva’s head as Buffon rushed out to stop the Spanish “false 9” crossing it. After that Italy had to push but really it was about damage control as Spain could smell fear and pushed for more. Italy’s chances were thin and the first half was made worse as Chillieni pulled up after 20 minutes and had to be taken off. As the first half was closing Spain doubled their lead and made Italy’s task look monumental as Alba burst forward with great pace. He played a one-two with Xavi as the through ball return left him one-on-one with Buffon, of course the Barcelona man as of Thursday slotted it home and sent Spain into the break 2-0 to the good.
In the second half it seemed to be all Spain no matter how hard Italy tried. At 2-0 up and very few chances going to their oppositions Spain were comfortable but a freak injury to Italy’s final substitute – Motta, after less than 10 minutes of game time left Italy with 10 men for half an hour. The task now looked impossible and Spain could hardly believe their look as they played the ball around confidently. The introduction of Torres for Fabregas added some energy and movement into the team as the Catalan star was beginning to look tired and another through ball to Xavi provided his second assist and Torres’ third goal as a confident finish into the bottom corner put him joint top of the goalscorer chart for the competition. Torres then ensured he won it as an excellent bit of movement allowed him to stretch the defence and force Buffon to yet again come to his feet, however he unselfishly passed it to his Chelsea teammate who had played all of 3 minutes in the whole competition. The midfielder obliged by scoring to wrap up an already foregone conclusion with so little time remaining.
The performance of Spain was surprising saying how bad they played in comparison to their other tournaments, but they delivered when it was needed and proved they are the best team ever by breaking various records in the process. Alba and Xavi were probably the best players though the team was excellent in movement and passing as you would expect from Spain, Fabregas proved himself to be a valuable asset as a false 9 with the way he bought his colleagues into the play.
The interesting point from the game was perhaps the way Del Bosque allowed Xavi to be more advanced in a 4231 like formation in which was perhaps to allow Busquets and Alonso to press Pirlo at all times; he was very ineffective in this match, but also to give Xavi the playmaker option with plenty of options around him and of course this worked as he racked two assists and completed various key passes in the match. Overall a solid performance when needed for probably the best international team ever with no player playing “bad” as such, though luck was on their side they got to the final by playing poorly and that speaks volumes about how good this team is.
Can they win the 2014 World Cup in Brazil for 4 on the trot though? We will see but with Busquets, Iniesta, Silva, Alba and many others still under 30 they have a good chance but only time will tell. There’s no doubting the ability of this team though and their attractive philosophy that they employ every game rain or shine.