Greetings and salutations! Welcome to our inaugural FourFiveTwo Liveblog, straight from the Home Depot parking lot. We open the European Championships today with UEFA’s dream match up: Poland plays a team that doesn’t have any black players on it. So the monkey chants will have to wait for at least another game. Suck it, liberals.
So we kick off with Poland, the lowest team in the FIFA rankings in the tournament, which is probably unfair, so soccer snobs around the world are now overrating their chances, VS. Greece, a team created in a laboratory circa 2004 to embody every negative stereotype Americans have about soccer. Let’s all pray Poland scores two quick, because otherwise we’ll spend the entire match wondering if the Polish ultras are waving around racist symbols, or just really like the letter S.
Line ups and live blog after the jump…
Pregame: Hello Fourfivetwoers, ESPN certainly seems to be excited. Michael Ballack is in the house and so are a lot of wooden posts. Can the survive all their flaming goalie gloves? Will Poland/Greece bore us all to tears? Will the last names of these players break my spell check. LET’S FIND OUT TOGETHER.
Pregame: Alexi Lalas is here. And he likes the Greeks. Ugh. He’s the worst.
Pregame: Scouser sighting. Macca is here. I hate ESPN. But so is Ian Darke. I love ESPN. I am so conflicted. Hold me Bob Ley.
Pregame: Van Bommel better cool it with this criticism, he’ll ruin UEFA and FIFA’s masterplan to hold all their tournaments in Eastern Europe for the next 50 years.
Pregame: Why are the polish opening ceremonies involving sombreros? … Don’t worry, its not racist. I haven’t even heard from UEFA yet. Also, just a heads up, the world’s gonna end when he finishes playing this song on his piano.
Pregame: Euro opening ceremonies involve Eurotrash DJ. God’s in his heaven, all is right with the world.
Pregame: Bob Ley is clearly not the equal of Bob Costas when it comes to stupid commentary over stupid opening ceremonies.
Pregame: No monkey chanting coming from the sections holding French and German flags. SO FAR SO GOOD, GUYS.
Pregame: Alexi Lalas and Michael Ballack talking about DJs. It isn’t getting any better than this, bros.
Pregame: NIKE VS. ADIDAS. THE ETERNAL WAR IS JOINED ONCE AGAIN.
Poland1-Wojciech Szczesny; 20-Lukasz Piszczek, 13-Marcin Wasilewski, 15-Damien Perquis, 2-Sebastian Boenisch; 16-Jakub Blaszczykowski, 7-Eugen Polanski, 11-Rafal Murawski, 8-Maciej Rybus; 10-Ludovic Obraniak; 9-Robert Lewandowski
Greece: 1-Kostas Chalkias; 15-Vasilis Torosidis, 8-Avraam Papadopoulos, 19-Sokratis Papastathopoulos, 20-Jose Holebas; 2-Giannis Maniatis, 21-Kostas Katsouranis, 10-Giorgos Karagounis; 18-Sotiris Ninis, 17-Fanis Gekas, 7-Giorgos Samaras
Pregame: Could those flags double as trampolines?
Pregame: Samaras didn’t make it to the team barber apparently.
Pregame: Greece wins the coin flip. That’s the most offense we’re gonna see from Germany’s client state all day, I think.
Pregame: More than that, Ben. More than that.
1′: AND WE”RE OFF. In a shocking move, Greece kicks the ball around their defense.
2′: Just a heads up, I’m not even going to try to spell these names. Expect sesame street names and insulting generalizations throughout this one.
3′: VERY DISAPPOINTED in Greece’s facial hair. C’mon guys. You’re broke, not French.
4′: 2 decent shots for Poland. Then they scuff it wide for a goal kick. There’s a world war 2 joke in here somewhere. Who wants to help me find it?
5′: Greece attempts to go forward, lumps it up, gets called offsides. Expect to see that summary a lot today.
7′: Free kick to Poland. Expect to see a lot of that one too.
9′: Greece tries a bit of skill in Poland’s half. It goes about as well as you’d expect.
10′: Ian Darke thinks that the Polish can draw the Greeks out of their half. Clearly he hasn’t watched Greece without the ball.
11′: Set piece, balding greek with stubble beard hits it wide.
12′: Lewandowski shoots it over the bar and it go sailing upwards, like his cow lick.
13′: Lewandowski drills one across the face off goal, no one can put it away. Poland looking more dangerous. Like a particularly mangy cat put into a corner. But with more hair gel. Or something.
14′: This tournament is already missing something. It is ailing. There is only one cure: vuvuzelas. You all know you want it. BZZZZZZZZZZZZ
GOAL Lewandowski! Poland shreds down the right flank again, but this time they finally get something out of it. Lewandowski heads it in from the edge of the box. Somewhere Angela Merkel is cackling with glee.
18′: Greece looking totally out of it right now. They’re barely holding on. Ah well. We’ll always have Portugal, right Lorber?
20′: Greece player still down. BUT WE HAVE THE FIRST APPEARANCE OF THE MAGIC SPRAY!
20′ Snuffalufagus is about to come on for Greece. Or Pap smear. Seriously, these names are crazy.
22′: Greek injury sucked all the energy out of this one right now.
23′: Greek shot on goal. Well wide. Surprise Surprise.
25′ Lewandowski just got hip tossed in the final third. Greece is wrestling this match a bit stiff.
26′: Ian Darke says Howard Webb is looking out for shirt pulling during this tournament. That’s good to know. Perhaps he should add kung fu to his watch list while he’s at it.
28′: Greek free kick right outside the box.
29′: And it really doesn’t work. Twice. That’s good value, though. Greece needs that.
30′: Greece back in the Polish half. Apologies if this blog can’t keep up with the Greek onslaught.
31′: After an exciting opening, we’re back to what we were all probably expecting. Lots of throw in and free kicks. All of them going precisely nowhere.
34′: I’ve had a dream the last few minutes of this match. About a snail, crawling down the edge of a razor.
36′: This game is my dream. This game is my nightmare.
36′: Papodopolous on for Papaboobaaboodaboupolous.
37′: Ball bounces around the Greek box. Poland scuff it wide, because God and Michel Plantini hate me.
38′: I have a theory that the appearance of Greece’s coach is directly correlated to the health of the Eurozone. At the very least, it explains a great deal.
39′ : Captain Consonant punches it out for Poland. Then Poland win a corner kick. You guys, Poland is way, way better than Greece. The question is, is Poland actually good or are Greece just debt ridden poo.
40′: No Ian, Greece doesn’t need half time. They need a new fucking squad. And I need a drink.
41′: Greek so hard. That set piece cray.
42′: Bouncy, bouncy, bouncy. Ball goes up, don’t come down.
43′: “Can Greece gouge out a result?” Oh Ian Darke. Your mastery of the English language is so, so appreciated.
43′: KASTAPOPLAPADINGDONG SENT OFF! SECOND YELLOW! GREEK SO HARD! THAT SHIT SENT OFF!
44′: Macca and Ian think this was a harsh sending off. I think this game has been harsh on me, so I suppose at the end of all of this, we’re all square.
45′: The worst part of that sending off is that Alexi Lalas’ smugness will reach intolerable extremes at the half.
46′: Greece clamor for a handball, they get a yellow instead. LOOOOOOOL
HALF- CONSONANTS 1 – 0 DEBT
So Greece has played like fucking dogshit in the first half. Sending off was harsh, but they have been utterly abysmal. Is it possible to bounce out of the group stages after one game? Please say it is. What’s that you say? Only if we get Angela Merkel involved? I think that can be arranged.
Maybe Poland can sub in that DJ. Perhaps that will open things up. His glittery shirt might make it more interesting at least.
To be fair to the Greeks, they had a decent penalty shout at the end. But it’s clearly not their day.
This game is great right now, but its all going to be ruined when we find out that Lyon’s won by 7.
In more half time news, I am about to put Nutella on some honey wheat bread. I’ll be sure to provide you with important updates on this developing sandwich situation.
Bob Ley talking about racism AND showing clips of players talking about racism. UEFA assassins should take care of this in 5…4…3..2…
AND WE’RE BACK. From the bathroom. 47′ minute….
48′: Nutella sandwich is delicious. Also Greek players are writhing around in pain.
49′: A Greek facehugger must have gotten on the Polish team at the half. Now they’re sitting back and absorbing pressure.
GOAL GYROS! Scz makes a total fucking hash of a cross into the box. Ball bounces around the box and the Greeks slot it into an open net.
51′: Hahaha. Arsenalol.
53′: Greek fans alive and singing now. Hopefully songs that are public domain. They can’t really afford much else.
54′: Chances we’ll see the Greeks in Poland’s half now that the score is level? 0.00000%
55′: There’s a real lack of racism in this game due to the lack of black players, but I’m sure that Polish supporters will appreciate the efforts of FourFiveTwo’s own Brian in the comments to make up for the deficit.
57′: Polish freekick, just wide.
58′: Some (me) might call this game boring, but I for one appreciate it. I don’t usually get the chance to watch League One football.
60′: Who knew when Sol Campbell talked about coming home in a coffin, he was talking about dying of boredom.
61′: Does anyone know why Poland has 2 logos on their kit? Are they signaling fealty to some country that has yet to conquer them? Confusion? Do they just like pretty birds? Is it some vague Polish joke?
63′: Samaras gets a chance in the box, then shows the skill the SPL is famous for by booting it over the advertising boarding.
64′: Greek fans in full voice: “We are staying up!”
66′: Polish cross into the box, but they Greek it up on the header.
68′: Oh my. Scezney fouls Plato (or whatever their name is) in the box. Straight red. Penalty.
68′: Classic Scez. Oh my. This IS Christmas.
70′: Poland saves it. Greece still sucks.
71′: This game is getting really meta, bros.
72′: Greece deserve a lot of credit for getting back into this with 10 men. Scez deserves a lot of credit for sucking and turning it into a 10 on 10. Here’s hoping an earthquake gets some credit too before this is over.
74′: The fighting gyros score! But then its rightly called offsides.
76′: Normal service has been resumed. Dull, dull, offsides, dull, free kick, dull, foul, poor long range effort, wash, rinse, repeat
78′: Poland gets through, but Greece does a nice job preventing any opportunity to shoot.
80′: Samaras chooses a poor time to jump start Greece’s space program and puts one in Row Z.
81′: I just realized its been almost the entire game and I haven’t made a joke calling Poland the Bafana Bafana after a goal. For this, I can only apologize.
82′: More poor shots. This time from Poland. Ugh.
83′: 7 minutes left and both teams are just going to kill off time? … ugh.
84′ Lewandowski with a not terrible shot! Hey! Life!
86′: Greece in time-wasting-before-a-free-kick shocker.
87′: At this point this game is like your grandmother in the nursing home. You know its all over, but you still have to wait.
88′ Lewandowski gets into the final third, but can’t get past Papsmearalopadopadingdong
90′: Greece almost put one in their own net with a poorly thought through clearance.
92′: This game is terrible and my commenters have left me. What has UEFA wrought?
AND ITS ALL OVER. THE REFEREE HAS MERCY ON OUR POOR, PATIENT SOULS.
Racists 1 – 1 Debtors
Probably fair, but Greece actually had the better chance to win this. As much as I appreciate Scez’s comedy horrific play, as soon as the penalty kick was saved that game died a slow, painful death. But hey, at least we didn’t have to watch Arsenal players after that.
Thanks for joining me, FourFiveTwo-kateers. Join us in an hour or so for Russia – Czech Republic. No black players again, so I expect you to pick up the slack for Eastern Europe.