Not Enough Dutch Courage

For the second major tournament in a row, the team that came out of the starting blocks the quickest have fallen at the quarter-final stage. It is a measure of the quality of last night’s Russian performance that the Netherlands were dependent on an exceptional...

Russia Hour

After a certain, indefinable point, failure becomes a default option. Like the South Korean team who, for so long seemed capable of doing everything but winning a match in the World Cup finals, so it was with Russia. Would they ever get past the group stages of a...

Spain 4-1 Russia

Slowly but surely, Euro 2008 is coming to life. After last night’s contender for Match Of The Tournament between the Netherlands and Italy, tonight’s match between Russia and Sweden ran it fairly close. Against the wishes of anyone that wishes to steer...

Euro 2004 – Group D

Finally, Group D. One of the curiosities of media coverage of this group so far has been the enthusiasm with which writers have reached into their big bag of cliches. Spain are the perennial under-achievers (true, but no more than England are), Russia are the...

Keeping The “Dream” Alive

I’m not a God-fearing man, but this weekend we have at least seen confirmation of the existence of Lucifer, because the only way that the events that unfolded in Tel Aviv last night could have come about in the way that they did must have been as the result of a...