While Alan Pardew hopes that England do well, like all the rest of the England fans, in the Euro 2012 Championships in Poland and the Ukraine, he still thinks Spain will be hard to beat, and that Germany is probably the next best team in the tournament.
Alan Pardew – picks Spain and Germany
For England fans the lads have played well so far, well at least the results have been very good but the performances against both France and the Ukraine were all on the defensive and to progress surely England have to attack more against Italy on Sunday night.
On ESPN in the US, Michael Ballack is one of the pundits, along with Wigan manager Roberto Martinez, and both could have good futures in broadcasting, as they obviously know the game inside out, and offer good analysis.
Pardew thinks England can beat Italy in their Euro 2012 quarter-final clash on Sunday, and if they can do that this will be the best England have done since they reached the semi-finals of Euro 1996 – when we wet on to be beaten by Germany in the semi-finals, and the same thing could happen this time around.
In 1996 England won their group with 7 points and beat Spain in the quarter finals on penalties (4-2) after it had ended 0-0 after extra time.
And in the semi-finals Germany beat us on penalties 6-5 after the game had ended 1-1 after extra time, with a certain Alan Shearer scoring after 3 minutes and of course the then Blackburn striker had scored with both his penalties in the two shoot-outs and went first each time.
He joined Newcastle later that summer, and 206 goals and 404 appearances later, the rest is history.
The 50 year-old Newcastle manager Alan Pardew has been impressed with England’s performances and results so far, and had this to say on the Newcastle web-site:
“I haven’t been able to take my eyes off it,” “There’s been some fantastic games and I’ve enjoyed it – it’s been a brilliant tournament.”
“I’m looking forward to the final stages of it now where it really gets interesting and am looking forward to hopefully seeing England beat Italy and qualify for the semi-finals.”
“However, when it comes to winning it I still think that Spain will be very, very difficult to beat. The only other team who has a really outstanding chance of competing at that level is Germany, so I would go for one of those two to win it.”
We think France will have a decent chance of beating Spain on Saturday night, and that England can squeeze past Italy, but England will have to show some attacking prowess at some point in that game.
And it’s good to hear that Roy Hodgson is concentrating on his players practicing penalties, because it’s likely a few of these games will not go to penalties after extra time.
We wonder if goalkeeper Joe Hart will be one of the penalty takers?