Live: Euro 2012 Playoff Draw
Follow a live commentary stream of the Euro 2012 Playoff Draw live from the Sheraton Hotel in Krakow. The draw gets underway officially at 12.00 Irish time.
12.30: Now that’s all done and dusted, I’ll let you go and book some flights. As always, thanks for reading.
12.25: Another man Trap should call is Shamrock Rovers boss Michael O’Neill, whose side knocked Flora Tallinn out of Europe this season. That said, only Karl Palatu of Flora is in the current squad, and when does Trap take advice from anyone anyway?
12.21: Flights to Tallinn have probably doubled in price in the last five minutes. Estonia came second in Group C behind Italy, beating Slovenia and Serbia to the playoffs thanks to Slovenia’s 1-0 win on Tuesday night. Serbia missed a late penalty which would’ve put them into the playoffs. Estonia began their campaign with a late, late comeback against Faroe Islands and a loss to Italy. They achieved good results against Serbia and Slovenia, but Trapattoni should get on the phone to Brian Kerr straight away, as Kerr’s Faroes beat them 2-0 in Torshavn in June. Estonia did do the double over Northern Ireland, 4-1 at home and 2-1 away, but the Republic should have nothing to fear, having gotten the best draw possible this afternoon.
12.20: That means Ireland will face Estonia in Tallinn on November 11th or 12th (likely to be Friday the 11th), with the return leg in Dublin on Tuesday November 15th.
12.18: It’s not only UEFA, Eurosport, and RTE with the technical problems, we’re having some ourselves. Although it’s great to have all you reading! We need to buy bigger servers it seems.
12.14: Last two teams out. Thanks fellas, that was painless for once:
CZECH REPUBLIC (home first) v MONTENEGRO
BOSNIA HERZEGOVINA (home first) v PORTUGAL
12.13: Yes, the almost perfect draw
ESTONIA (home first) v REPUBLIC OF IRELAND
12.11: And we’re underway after ages of messing about. Well not ages, better than usual for these things.
TURKEY (home first) v CROATIA
12:01: You really didn’t expect it to start on time, did you? However, once we get going, there won’t be the usual song and dance, so we should know pretty soon.
11.59: Over on supporters’ forum foot.ie, popular user tetsujin has done his homework on the opponents, and came up with the following:
“Turkey got by some distance the worst results, and are the only team in the play offs to finish with a negative goal difference. Won all their home games, bar a loss to Germany, but only won once away to Kazakhstan
Estonia had possibly the worst result in qualifying across every group, losing 2-0 away to the Faroe Islands, and are by a distance the team we want
Despite the claims that we don’t score that often, Montenegro only scored seven goals in qualifiers, but only conceded seven, and failed to score away to England and Switzerland, incidentally they are the only team not to score in Switzerland
Bosnia’s home form was excellent, winning all but one game, a loss to France, and scoring 10 goals in the other 5 games including 5 past Luxembourg. Slightly weaker away from home, only beating Belarus and Luxembourg, scoring seven goals in five games, but failing to score against Romania in a 3-0 loss.”
11.55: All the unseeded nations are hoping to avoid Portugal, mainly due to the profile of a certain Real Madrid player who was with Man Utd once upon a time, but there seems to be no consensus as to who are the worst of the seeded teams. Similarly, many people are putting forward their claims as to whether Turkey or Bosnia are the ones to avoid from the unseeded pot.
11.52: Of the eight teams involved, three of them will be hoping for their own Stuttgart moment next summer, with Bosnia, Estonia, and Montenegro all hoping to be on their way to their first major tournament. Speaking of Stuttgart, Euro 88 was the last time Ireland appeared at the European Championships (the only time too, so far). Seamus Coleman, Ciaran Clark, Keith Treacy, and James McCarthy weren’t even born then. Making you feel old, aren’t I?
11.50: We’ve previewed those unseeded teams for you, they’ve given their opinions on us, and in probably less than half an hour, we’ll know exactly who we will face on November 11th and 15th in a two-legged tie to determine who goes to Poland and Ukraine next summer.
11.47: And the following second-placed teams have made the playoffs, with Sweden qualifying as best runner-up:
Pot 1 (seeded teams)
Croatia (coefficient 32.723)
Republic of Ireland (28.203)
Czech Republic (27.982)
Pot 2 (unseeded teams)
Bosnia and Herzegovina (27.199)
11.45: If you haven’t been living under a rock, you’ll know that the teams already qualified are:
11.40:Getting things underway ahead of the draw, with some background info and all that lark. Thanks for joining us. Many Irish fans are hoping we get drawn against Estonia, with even Giovanni Trapattoni getting in on the action. “One team is the same as the others,” Trapattoni said yesterday. “They all finished second in their groups. We played Montenegro before and they were good, with some very important players, but we saw last night that Armenia had no famous players really and yet they could have achieved qualification.” But he singled out Estonia, who obviously are more equal than the rest: “They are physically strong and it would not be an easy match but the others are clever and I don’t like us to play against players who are clever. It’s better to play a physical team.”