It is at these big international tournaments that stars are made, and also where some starts fail to shine under the harsh lights. This years Euro 2008 has been no exception with these stars failing to live up to their press clippings.
No 5: Karim Benzema
The France striker has been a long-term target of Manchester United and went into the tournament with a growing reputation as his country’s wonderkid. Fans were told he was the hottest property outside Italy, Spain and England. But Benzema failed to impress during his two dismal displays for the hopeless French.
No 4: Adrian Mutu
The former Chelsea striker was expected to lead underdogs Romania into the knock-out stages. And with a penalty against Italy, he was one kick away from sending his side into the quarter-finals. But Mutu fluffed his effort and Romania were out of the tournament.
No 3: Luca Toni
The Italian star came into the Euros on the back of a golden season with Bayern Munich, notching 31 goals in the Bundesliga. But Toni endured a dreadful tournament, missing countless chances as never looking up to the pace of the game.
No 2: Petr Cech
Leading 2-1 against Turkey with just two minutes left, Czech Republic had one foot in the quarter-finals— until Cech’s howler. The Chelsea keeper horribly fluffed a routine cross for the equalizer, before an injury-time winner sent his side packing.
No. 1 Nicolas Anelka
Anelka was another French player who flopped in this tournament. Anelka gets out award for failing break a sweat in the 111 minutes he played. His lackadaisical performance in the Champions League Final was carried over to the Euros and you have to wonder if Anelka best days are now behind him.