Turkey heads into its quarter-final contest versus Croatia sans starting goalkeeper Volkan Demirel and midfielder Mehmet Aurelio who are suspended. The suspensions are two more roadblocks to overcome for the Turks, but during the team’s run in Euro 2008, Turkey seems to enjoy playing the role of the underdog and the disadvantaged.
Turkey is the only country out of the sixteen nations to overcome scoring deficits in the tournament. The 3-2 comeback victory against the Czech Republic was an instant classic.
Croatia dispatched of top teams Germany and Poland with relative ease during the group stage. The team’s 1-0 defeat of Poland was orchestrated mainly by second-string players. Star right-back Vedran Corluka was quoted by the media as stating, “Turkey are good, but we are better.”
Prediction: Croatia ends the comeback Turks run by a score of 2-1.
Don’t blame Big Phil’s departure on Portugal’s lackluster showing yesterday against Germany. It was a classic case of power versus finesse. Last night, power won out.
In European transfer news:
A.S. Roma signed Norway international John Arne Riise from Liverpool for a transfer fee of £3.96million. Riise signed a four-year contract with the Serie A outfit.
Portsmouth signed winger Glen Little to a one-year deal from recently relegated Reading.
Sevilla signed left-back Fernando Navarro from Real Mallorca for a fee of £4million.
Scottish giant Rangers FC signed Burnley forward Kyle Lafferty for a fee of £3.25million.