Eurocup 2012: Quarterfinals

The hosts are out, and some of the star teams remain. May the best team win, but will the mighty fall or rise again?

Portugal vs. Czech Republic are up first in the quarterfinal clash of this exciting Euro 2012 tournament so far. The talk of Cristiano Ronaldo's performance has been a hot topic ever since the tournament kicked off. Ronaldo struggled with easy finishes and questions on whether his head was in the game arose and shook the player's nerves. However, the recent champion of La Liga silenced the critics and led his team to an important win against the Dutch with two impressive finishes. Peter Cech is one to watch for the Czech side. With his always impressive performance, will one of the top three best goalies in the world be able to stop the Portuguese leader Ronaldo?

Germany vs. Greece will face off on Friday, June 22. The Germans have become the favorites to win the tournament after their almost perfect performance in the group stage. With players such as Mesut Ozil, Bastian Schweinsteiger, and impressive striker Mario Gomez, the Germans may well be able to continue through the semi-finals. However, after a struggling yet surprising performance by the Greeks, the Germans might face some difficulty against the passionate Hellas.

Spain vs. France will clash heads on Saturday, June 23. The Spanish are the defending champions of the tournament, but also entered the tournament with extremely high expectations after clenching the World Cup title in 2010. Andres Iniesta has taken over the headlines in Spain being called the most valuable player of the tournament for the Spanish so far. After a rough start, Fernando Torres has also now become a threat for any of the rivals the furia roja face. How will the French handle the defending champions? With Franck Ribery missing the team's training on Tuesday, fear of him missing the quarterfinals has increased significantly. Les bleus will have to fight on and intend to prove the critics right, that indee they are able to win the tournament.

England vs. Italy will be Sunday's spectacle in the quarterfinals. England had to deal with numerous amounts of nerves before the tournament began. The root of their nerves came from their brand new head coach, Roy Hodgson, and questions as to whether or not he will be able to handle the heavy job that is the England National Team. The real question, however, was if the English were going to be able to handle the first two matches without their super-star striker Wayne Rooney. With their super-sub, Theo Walcott, the English were able to have a series of solid performances and shut-out the Ukraine and were able to go top of their group. Their Italian rivals also bring some solid players of their own. Andrea Pirlo and Gianluigi Buffon have been the main contenders for the Italians, leading their team to the quarterfinals and possibly beyond. However, will the Italians be able to survive Mario Balotelli's possible absence?

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