Sunday June 17, 2012 Group Stage: Group B Finished Metalist Stadium

Portugal 2 - 1 Netherlands

  • Cristiano Ronaldo 28’, 74’
  • van der Vaart 11’

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  • Live Commentary

    Time:90'
    • Portugal
    • Netherlands
    • 90+5' There's the final whistle, and so ends a miserable tournament for the Netherlands. But credit to Portugal, who were excellent tonight. They finish second in Group B, behind Germany, and will face the Czech Republic in the quarter-finals.
    • 90+4' Forced through towards Van Persie again, but Patricio is out well to claim.
    • 90+3' Joao Pereira booked. Doesn't matter, as bookings are wiped after the group stage.
    • 90+2' Sneijder delivers a free-kick into the Portuguese box... Pepe heads clear.
    • 90+1' Afellay delivers from the right... it's poor and goes out for a goal kick.
    • 90' Four minutes more torture for the Dutch, who just want to go home. To misquote a famous saying about the Boston Red Sox.
    • 89' Ronaldo so close to a hat-trick! He's on the right this time, and he strikes a left-foot shot off the base of the upright!
    • 88' Sneijder plays Van Persie through - he's just onside but shoots wide of the right-hand post. Bad miss.
    • 88' Portugal sub: Rolando comes on for Nani for the final few minutes.
    • 87' Mathijsen hits a volley wide from the edge of the box.
    • 86' The Dutch fans, normally so vocal, are almost silent. It has been an unremittingly bleak tournament for them.
    • 85' Wasteful from Nani again, cutting inside from the right and firing a left-foot shot high over the bar.
    • 84' ...Nani tries an ambitious chip from out on the right but it lands on top of the goal.
    • 84' Netherlands have a corner, but Portugal clear and here they come on the break...
    • 83' From Tom Adams in Kharkiv: "Another tremendous effort from Van der Vart as he bends one onto the post. Some fine moments from him, but at what cost to the team?"
    • 82' Van der Vaart strikes the post! He hits a gorgeous right-footed shot from outside the box, but it smacks the woodwork with Patricio left helpless!
    • 81' GOAL IN LVIV! Lars Bender has scored for Germany, who are now 2-1 up and heading for nine points. Looks like Germany and Portugal for the last eight.
    • 80' Bruno Alves flicks a corner on to Oliveira who heads it goalwards but straight at Stekelenburg.
    • 80' Nelson Oliveira has a pop at goal but cannot work the goalkeeper.
    • 79' Oh, this is wretched from the Dutch. They can't even string passes together any more. What a miserable tournament it has been.
    • 78' Netherlands are all over the place now. Nani crosses low from the right and Stekelenburg makes a brave claim.
    • 77' Sneijder hits a long shot that bounces into the midriff of Patricio.
    • 76' In the aftermath of that goal, Van der Vaart and Robben had a good old-fashioned Dutch argument. Plus ca change...
    • 75' Well, that is the end of the Netherlands. As things stand it's Germany 7, Portugal 6, Denmark 4, Netherlands 0. And now a Danish goal would send Germany out! Denmark v Germany LIVE
    • 74' GOAL!! RONALDO AGAIN! His second of the night - great counter-attack from Portugal, Nani finds Ronaldo on the left and he cuts inside before drilling the ball into the bottom-left corner!
    • 73' From Tom Adams in Kharkiv: "Bento was celebrating there and smacks the bench, as the Portugal subs kick water bottles all over the place. What a save from Stekelenburg." Tom Adams on Twitter
    • 72' NANI!! Great save Stekelenburg but he had to score! Ronaldo raced down the left and rolled the ball across the six-yard box for Nani, whose low shot was saved - anything in the top half of the net was a certain goal!
    • 72' Portugal change: Custodio comes on for Raul Meireles.
    • 71' As it stands, Portugal and Denmark would both have four points, with the former going through thanks to their head-to-head victory.
    • 70' Portugal look comfortable here. Mind you, a Danish goal in Lviv would leave them needing to win.
    • 69' The Dutch have gone to three at the back. Meanwhile, Van Persie is in the book for leading with his arm on Pepe. And I'm sure we'd all like to extend our sympathies to the Portugal defender...
    • 68' Netherlands change: Tally Ho! Ibrahim Afellay replaces beleaguered left-back Jetro Willems. Holland chucking everyone forward, but who will win the ball now?
    • 67' Meireles was decked in the build-up there, and stayed down... he should be OK.
    • 66' Good save Stekelenburg! That could have been curtains for the Dutch! Ronaldo comes away pacily on the break and tees up Coentrao, whose left-foot shot brings a smart diving stop from the Dutch goalkeeper.
    • 66' Van Persie whacks a long shot that pings back off the head of Bruno Alves, who doesn't even flinch!
    • 65' Portugal sub: Nelson Oliveira comes on for Helder Postiga, who has been really poor tonight.
    • 64' Nice touch from Moutinho, backheeling down the line... but it ends up going out for a throw.
    • 63' Decent spell for the Portuguese, but Moutinho is penalised for a foul on Van Persie.
    • 62' Portugal momentarily look a bit like England, getting banks of four behind the ball... it won't last long, I wouldn't think.
    • 61' Hard to know what Van Marwijk can do. He's already got all his best attackers on the pitch. He could bring Afellay on, but for whom? And there's always Dirk Kuyt...
    • 60' OFFISDE!! Postiga puts the ball in the net but the flag is up! Pepe nods down for Ronaldo, whose scuffed shot is turned in by Postiga - but he is a yard offside and it's a good decision.
    • 59' Coentrao overelaborates when he should cross, trying to take Van der Wiel on. He does, however, win a corner.
    • 58' Ronaldo shifts the ball onto his left foot and chips in a cross... caught by Stekelenburg.
    • 57' Sneijder delivers the free-kick to a good area with Vlaar and Huntelaar flying in, but neither can make meaningful contact.
    • 57' Sneijder has a bit of handbags with Joao Pereira. The Portuguese was deliberately preventing a quick free-kick, so Sneijder 'accidentally' trod on his foot.
    • 56' Just to emphasise: as things stand, Portugal are going through with Germany; and Netherlands must win by two to have any chance of progressing.
    • 55' Moutinho's shooting has been poor so far, and he drags another 20-yard effort wide.
    • 55' Willems is almost caught out of position but recovers and boots a long ball out for a Portugal throw.
    • 53' The corner is played short before Sneijder delivers with an inswinger from the left. Vlaar meets it but glances his header over.
    • 53' Robben takes a heavy touch and Pereira intercepts, but he concedes a corner.
    • 52' Moutinho milked that challenge by staying down, but it looks like he will be OK to continue.
    • 51' There's that argy-bargy we were looking for. Willems flies into a rash challenge on Moutinho and that's a yellow card. He misses Holland's next match. Not that it looks like that will matter...
    • 51' The corner is half-cleared, and when it is fired back in it comes to Mathijsen, whose glancing header does not trouble Patricio.
    • 50' Robben drives into the box but Pepe holds him off - albeit at the cost of a corner.
    • 49' Moutinho delivers a free-kick into the Dutch box, which is cleared. The ball comes back to him, and he slices a left-foot volley high and wide.
    • 48' Arjen Robben is not playing wide on the left, Van Persie is on the right and Sneijder in the middle. Hopefully Sneijder will see more of the ball as a consequence.
    • 47' Nani clips the ball over the top for Ronaldo as Holland wait for an offside flag that never comes. Ronaldo opts not to shoot first time, cuts back inside and has his effort blocked.
    • 46' Second half under way! No personnel changes, but has Van Marwijk made a tactical adjustment to stem the red tide?
    • 45' No stoppage time at all, and that's the end of a cracking first half. Netherlands need to win by two but they are being held. As things stand in Group B: Germany 7, Portugal 4, Denmark 4, Netherlands 1. The Portuguese are going through...
    • 44' Holland build a decent spell of possession, but they are really struggling to get their dazzling array of attacking players involved.
    • 43' Ridiculous from Huntelaar! He clearly uses both arms to control a long ball, and that's just silly from the Dutch number nine.
    • 42' Fantastic touch from Ronaldo to control the ball and take it past Van der Wiel... he goes for goal but fires wide from the left side.
    • 41' Van der Vaart swings a free-kick into the Portuguese box, but Patricio is equal to it and catches.
    • 40' Nervous Dutch faces in the crowd - they have really fallen apart since taking the lead. Still winning the pass count 221-119, but there's no doubt Portugal look the more positive side.
    • 39' How odd that three of the four players to score at three Euros are Portuguese...
    • 38' Cristiano Ronaldo is only the 4th player to score at 3 different ECh's. Nuno Gomes, Hélder Postiga and Jürgen Klinsmann are the others. (Infostrada)
    • 37' Veloso has a shot left-footed from the free-kick, but it goes just over.
    • 36' Nani is poleaxed on the right side trying to take the ball past Van der Vaart. VdV - one of the sport's notorious hard men... Free-kick Portugal.
    • 35' Was it such a good idea to drop Mark van Bommel after all? They're getting overrun here.
    • 34' Portugal win a corner on their left, Moutinho takes and RONALDO meets it with a powerful header just wide!
    • 33' Ronaldo powers a long range shot, and Stekelenburg fits the dipping effort away! Portugal very much in the ascendancy.
    • 32' Netherlands have a mountain to climb here - they have to win by two to stand any chance, and they are under the cosh here.
    • 31' Nani cuts inside from the right and strikes a left-foot shot just wide from outside the box! Not far away...
    • 30' You have to say that was coming, a good spell from Portugal. The group situation has changed four times already tonight in the first half-hour!
    • 29' Right, Portugal are going through again! As it stands: Germany 7, Portugal 4, Denmark 4, Netherlands 1. Portugal through thanks to their head-to-head victory against the Danes.
    • 28' GOAL!! CRISTIANO RONALDO!! He's finally done it! He runs on to a sumptuous through ball from Joao Pereira and beats Stekelenburg!
    • 28' Sneijder cuts inside from the left and goes for goal looking to catch Patricio out, but the keeper is equal to it.
    • 27' Portugal have certainly got themselves a foothold in the game and are having the better of things at the moment.
    • 26' Ronaldo feeds the overlapping Meireles down the left... he crosses out of play.
    • 25' GOAL IN LVIV! Denmark are level against Germany, which puts them through as it stands! Germany 7, Denmark 4, Netherlands 3, Portugal 3. Denmark v Germany LIVE
    • 24' Ronaldo is through again, but this time he is offside.
    • 23' Ronaldo! Meets a right-sided cross with a powerful header and Stekelnburg claws it away!
    • 23' Van der Vaart's deep corner finds De Jong unmarked at the far post, but he cannot keep his header down!
    • 22' Sneijder takes the free-kick and Moutinho can only loft it towards the far post where Coentrao puts it behind for a corner.
    • 21' Holland win a free-kick after Joao Pereira brings Willems down..
    • 20' Postiga twists and turns inside the box but cannot get a shot away and cannot find a team-mate.
    • 19' GOAL IN LVIV! Germany lead 1-0 against Denmark! That means Portugal are through for the moment. Germany 9, Portugal 3, Denmark 3, Netherlands 3. But a Dutch goal sends them through!
    • 18' The corner is floated deep towards Bruno Alves but cleared.... back in for Meireles, who booms a shot into the side netting from a tight angle.
    • 17' Awful backpass from Van der Wiel, playing Postiga clean through... but his low shot is deflected wide by Stekelenburg! Corner.
    • 17' Ronaldo offside now. You just get the feeling he's trying a bit too hard.
    • 16' RONALDO!! Cuts inside from the left, breezes past Vlaar and strikes a low shot off the outside of the near post! Still no joy for Portugal's captain and star man.
    • 15' This is the first time the Netherlands have led at Euro 2012, and their fans are making a right racket. Empty seats in the Portugal section.
    • 14' Coentrao is penalised for a foul on Robben. Portugal on the ropes here.
    • 13' That was a superb finish, and Van der Vaart justifies his selection ahead of Van Bommel - VdV described himself as like a caged dog earlier in the week. Now he is captaining his nation and leading from the front.
    • 12' As it stands, it is still Germany and Denmark who go through - Germany 7, Denmark 4, Netherlands 3, Portugal 3.
    • 11' GOAL!! RAFAEL VAN DER VAART FOR HOLLAND! Cracking finish, taking Robben's lay-off and curling it into the left corner from 20 yards! Perfect start for the Dutch, who need to win by two to go through.
    • 10' Played through to Sneijder on the left side of the box... the ball is just too powerful for the Dutch number 10, who may well have been offside anyway.
    • 9' No goals in the other game in Lviv, but Mueller has missed a good chance for Germany.
    • 8' Stekelenburg is on the floor as he challenges Postiga... Bruno Alves shoots for goal and the ball ends up on top of the net - but the whistle has already gone for a foul by Postiga.
    • 7' Ronaldo fires it, the ball deflects off the wall and out for a corner.
    • 7' Free-kick Portugal 30+ yards out, Ronaldo stands over it...
    • 6' Robben tees up Van der Vaart 25 yards out, but Moutinho charges down the shot.
    • 5' It has been almost unbroken Dutch possession since the word go. Impressive start from them, following a hopeless performance against Germany.
    • 4' Van der Wiel crosses from the right - over Huntelaar and it bounces to Sneijder at the back post... he volleys wildly over left-footed.
    • 3' Diagonal cross in from the Dutch left towards Huntelaar -- Alves deals with him in muscular fashion and the ball bounces through to Patricio.
    • 2' Van der Vaart is playing deep in midfield where Van Bommel has hitherto operated. Van Persie behind Huntelaar, Sneijder left, Robben right.
    • 1' Game on! The Dutch are on the ball, playing from right to left in an all-black strip with some orange trim. Portugal all in red.
    • 19:44 The following players are a yellow card away from suspension: Willems, N De Jong, Coentrao, Meireles, Postiga, Ronaldo.
    • 19:44 Almost ready to go here. I'm Alex Chick, and you can get in touch with me on Twitter - @alexchick81. Alex Chick on Twitter
    • 19:42 And now the Portuguese anthem - Ronaldo mumbling, Eusebio in the crowd doing likewise. Before anyone gets upset, they're footballers not singers.
    • 19:41 The teams are out in Kharkiv! First up, a lusty rendition of the Dutch anthem.
    • 19:40 Here's a quick stats dump, courtesy of Opta: The Netherlands are the team with the most shots (46) but the fewest goals (one) in Group B... Portugal’s last five goals conceded at Euros were all headers.... None of the Netherlands’ last seven goals at Euros has been scored before the 54th minute... In both games at Euro 2012 the Dutch have conceded the opening goal in the 24th minute.
    • 19:35 A good moment on ITV, with Roy Keane defending his comments about Ireland after Giovanni Trapattoni had a pop at him. To be honest, though, Keane claiming he had a decent spell at Sunderland looks a bit hollow next to Trap's seven Serie A titles, European Cup, Bundesliga and Portuguese titles.
    • 19:30 We can expect some aggro tonight if these countries' last major tournament meeting is anything to go by. I'm talking, of course, about the Battle of Nuremberg in the last 16 of the 2006 World Cup. That was a game of 16 yellow cards and four reds - Portugal won it 1-0, and Khalid Boulahrouz made Cristiano Ronaldo cry. Video nasties this way
    • 19:25 Down on the comments board, Jonathan P remarks: "Can the Netherlands beat Portugal by at least 2 goals? ­ Yes...if they can finish their scoring opportunities. ­ Something tells me they will squander them­ again...Portugal 2, Netherlands 0. Germany should­ handle Denmark and advance into the quarterfinals along­ with the Portuguese."
    • 19:25 England's women have been in action this afternoon, securing a 1-0 win against the Netherlands in Salford - a quickly-taken Rachel Yankey free-kick doing the damage.
    • 19:20 In order for Holland to go through, we would need to have a 9-3-3-3 points distribution in the group. Only other such group we can recall was in the 1950 World Cup when England were in a 6-2-2-2 group won by Spain under two points for a win. Thanks to football journalism's Richard Jolly for that nugget.
    • 19:15 Tom Adams on the player introductions: "Biggest cheer when the Dutch line-up is announced is for Huntelaar. Many have been clamouring for his inclusion. They have it tonight."
    • 19:10 Plus of course we're covering the other Group B match in a simulcast for the ages. Tony Mabert is across Denmark v Germany. Denmark v Germany: LIVE
    • 19:05 And our man in Kharkiv, Tom Adams, will be tweeting throughout the game - the frequency presumably determined by whether he has been able to steal an internet cable again. He's @tomEurosport Tom Adams on Twitter
    • 19:05 My name's Alex Chick, and I'll be your guide tonight. You can get in touch with me on Twitter if you wish - @alexchick81 Alex Chick on Twitter
    • 19:00 That's all fairly complicated, but all will be explained as we go along. The situation is pretty clear for the Dutch, but less so for Portugal. Conspiracy theory fans might realise that if Denmark beat Germany 3-2, both teams will be through regardless of events here in Kharkiv.
    • 18:55 PERMUTATIONS: NETHERLANDS must win by at least two-goal margin and hope Denmark lose. Otherwise they are going home.
    • 18:55 PERMUTATIONS: PORTUGAL will be though if they win, unless Denmark win a high-scoring match by a one-goal margin (3-2 or higher). A draw is OK for Portugal if Denmark lose. Portugal can also lose by a one-goal margin and go through, but only if Denmark lose.
    • 18:55 PERMUTATIONS: A win sends DENMARK through. A draw is only OK if Portugal lose. If they lose, they are out.
    • 18:55 PERMUTATIONS: We'll go through these again, but here's how it stands in Group B: GERMANY can only be knocked out if they lose to Denmark (by anything other that 3-2, 4-3 or higher) and Portugal win.
    • 18:50 Despite losing their first two games, the Netherlands are rated by Infostrada as having an 11% chance of progressing to the quarter-finals tonight.
    • 18:48 NETHERLANDS: Stekelenburg, Van der Wiel, Mathijsen, Vlaar, Willems, De Jong, Sneijder, Robben, Van der Vaart, Huntelaar, Van Persie... Subs: Vorm, Krul, Heitinga, Bouma, Boulahrouz, Vam Bommel, Schaars, Strootman, Kuyt, L de Jong, Narsingh, Afellay.
    • 18:47 PORTUGAL: Rui Patrício, Alves, Pepe, Coentrão, Pereira, Veloso, Moutinho, Meireles, Nani, Ronaldo, Postiga... Subs: Eduardo, Beto, Costa, Rolando, Lopes, Custódio, Quaresma, Micael, Viana, Almeida, Oliveira, Varela. They are unchanged.
    • 18:47 The teams are in! Three changes for the Dutch: Rafael van der Vaart, Klaas-Jan Huntelaar and Ron Vlaar replace Mark van Bommel, Ibrahim Afellay and John Heitinga.
    • 18:45 Official teams are yet to be announced, but our man in Ukraine, Tom Adams, tweets: "Netherlands, in need of a sizeable win, cut loose as Van der Vaart, Robben, Sneijder, Van Persie and Huntelaar all start." Tom Adams on Twitter
    • 18:45 Welcome to LIVE coverage of the Euro 2012 Group B match between Netherlands and Denmark!
  • Summary

    • 60' OFFISDE!! Postiga puts the ball in the net but the flag is up! Pepe nods down for Ronaldo, whose scuffed shot is turned in by Postiga - but he is a yard offside and it's a good decision.

Team Line-up & Ratings

  • Line-up

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      Midfielders
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      Substitution Out72′ - -
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      Strikers
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