Yesterday, Cristiano Ronaldo scored a 90th minute header to clinch a 1-0 away victory for Portugal over Denmark in their Euro 2016 qualifying match. The victory moved the Iberians as much as third in Group I. The Portuguese, coming off a 0-1 home loss to Albania, needed the win to rectify their course toward France's Euro of what has become a more competitive group than expected.
Meanwhile, Spain, who lost 1-2 away to Slovakia on October 9th, been able to relocate the proper direction Sunday by beating up on lowly Luxembourg 4-0 inside their second away match of Group C, following a fairly easy 5-1 home conquer Macedonia. The match featured Diego Costa's first goal for Spain, their third in the match.
The Netherlands 0-2 loss away to Iceland complicated, but doesn't yet define, their passage from Group A in which the Czech Republic and Iceland have both won their three games to steer the table with nine points. World Cup holders Germany were beaten away 0-2 by Poland after which drew 1-1 accustomed to Ireland, to tie Scotland at 4 points in Group D. The Germans are behind Poland and also the Republic of Ireland both with seven points. Switzerland, with losses to England and Slovenia, been able to beat tiny San Marino 4-0 to salvage some points in Group E.
Northern Ireland won away games against Greece and Hungary, as well as a 2-0 home win against the Faroe Islands, to earn nine points and top the table in Group F. After drawing with Russia and Austria, Sweden got a needed 2-0 home victory over minnows Liechtenstein to remain in the hunt in Group G. Croatia and Italy lead Group H with nine points away from three consecutive victories each and will meet November 16th in Italy to find out who remains atop the table. See UEFA.com for full results and standings.
On the friendlies side with the ledger Brazil beat Argentina 2-0 in China with goals from Atletico Mineiro's Diego Tardelli, the striker new Brazilian coach Dunga has decided to come up with a starter alongside Neymar. The latter star, and Barcelona striker, scored all four of Brazil's goals in a very 4-0 rout of Japan in Singapore. Argentina then been able to salvage some pride having a 7-0 thrashing of lowly Hong Kong with Lionel Messi scoring the fifth and seventh goals.
Colombia beat El Salvador inside USA and Chile beat visiting Peru from the same 3-0 score line, the USA tied Ecuador 1-1 over a late equalizer for your visitors, while Portugal lost 1-2 to France in the Stade de France. Real Madrid's Karim Benzema opened the scoring after which setup Paul Pogba to the second goal before Ricardo Quaresma, in to the substituted Ronaldo, scored a consolation goal off a lack of success.
Radamel Falcao and Carlos Bacca (brace) scored for Colombia who subsequently beat Canada 1-0, inside the USA, using a goal from James Rodriguez. The South American teams are preparing for that Copa America, the continental championship to be located in Chile next summer. The cup will feature all with the continent's national teams plus invitees Mexico and Jamaica.
Taking the Portuguese team's case first we observe that Ronaldo remains the team's heart and soul, then when he could be around the Western Iberians are competitive with just about anyone. He is living an incredibly long run of superb form that's unfortunately broken through the weeks from the 2014 World Cup because of injury. Though he is not quite returning to his full potential he's nearing it and when he does Real Madrid can also be reaping rewards galore this season.
Ronaldo's Spanish Football archrival, Messi, who a a lot longer run in Brazil come july 1st, will not be as consistently as much as his best since that time and contains relied on service from teammates at Barcelona and on the national team for his continued productivity. Messi's disappearance during his team's game against Brazil was hardly comprised by his reappearance against lowly Hong Kong and the scoring was neither timely, nor conclusive, in this match. He is, though, creating a duo with Neymar at Barca that will be fun to find out develop to full fruition.
Neymar himself, around the other hand, is reaching a peak of form that reminds one in the Messi from the 90- goal season a little bit ago. The Brazilian is making up for Dunga's unfortunate penchant for relying over a single immobile striker as the center point of his national team's offense. Tardelli is unquestionably a clone of Luis Fabiano who's brings shivers to Brazilian fans who still recall the Selecao's 2010 South African debacle. Dunga was an unacceptable choice for Brazil and yes it might cost the united states another couple of major international tournament debacles for your powers that be to reach that foregone conclusion. Neymar, though, continue his form if the guy can stay healthy and the budding partnership with Messi will test their La Liga rivals in Madrid all season long.
With Mesut Ozil out for weeks with injury Germany is missing an integral linchpin in its midfield and also have struggled to call home around the form that won them the 2014 World Cup. A few bad matches would be the average deflation expected though, as soon as the team's wonderful run this summer, plus they should climb back approximately their past form soon making up for current missteps. Expect to view Germany contend in France come Euro 2016.
The Dutch are struggling with the national level, as usual, but will also pick the pace up as needed since a team using the likes of Arjen Robben, Robin Van Persie, Wesley Sneijder and company rarely falter for very long. It is the Spanish National Team, that's having the same problem as the Brazilians, that's most troubling.
Brazil might have time and energy to talk about a whole new generation of stars to compete next World Cup or else the upcoming South American championship, but Spain will probably be saying goodbye on the most their aging generation of superstars in the next few years along with the following crop is just not quite at their predecessors' level. Keeping Vicente del Bosque because national coach was a mistake. He is now bent on reshaping the Spanish tiki-taka possession style in his new image, the long-ball-to-Diego-Costa attack, which had such disastrous results both the 2009 summer so far inside Euro qualifiers against credible opponents. For as long as del Bosque remains with the reigns and insisting on leaving his mark by remaking his team's long-successful gameplay, Spain will be affected.
Chile here and Colombia were dark horses on the World Cup nevertheless they will likely be front and center contenders come next summer. The Copa America hosts have as strong a side while they have ever had as well as their World Cup performances are something to build upon. Their form in recent international friendlies has been impressive and they also is highly recommended candidates for advancement deep to the tourney should they continue on this vein.
Colombia was impressive in Brazil earlier this summer too and can have gotten after dark hosts nevertheless for some tough play and calls nevertheless they are now reshaping themselves with Falcao last action as well as the team looks deadly. Euro 2016 may well be a standout tourney using the possible ways to crown Germany anew, say one last goodbye to Spain and also the Dutch, and welcome some promising newcomers to higher international status including could possibly be the case with the Belgians and Swiss, nevertheless it will likely be the Copa next summer that can provide the first indications of how many with the global game's plate tectonics will align for years to come.
Next week we resume La Liga play and Champions League play resumes the week next. Many of these same stars will be plying their trade on the domestic and European club level of competition. In the back of their minds will probably be their performances and people with their teammates and opponents over these international clashes, plus a number of those players could have personal agendas they will look to address on their clubs' pitches.
Some would want to impress further to garner more national team playing time or gain a spot should they are not starters. Others will be to obtain even for losses or slights. Most, will still only put their trips to their rear and acquire on with their club level roles. And then, a number of stars such as recent rivals Messi and Neymar or Benzema and Ronaldo will likely be asked to put those clashes behind while focusing on group.
Whatever the gamers do these international interludes provide glimpses of things to come from the participants, so keep in mind what Neymar did or Messi did not, or what Benzema accomplished for Euro hosts France, or Ronaldo for qualifier Portugal, or James showed for Colombia, then see what effect it has on the upcoming club level