10th-Van Persie v Germany: In tenth place is the Dutch forward who produced one piece of magic despite having an extremely poor tournament. Holland were losing by two goals at the time; however Van Persie gave his team some hope with a powerful long range shot. RVP collected a pass from one of his team mates before sprinting forward with pace and purpose. He then hit a rasping pile driver with his weaker foot which flew past the goalkeeper and into the back of the net.


9th place – Balotelli v Germany: Italy’s second goal of their Euro 2012 semi final against Germany was scored by Mario Balotelli. Germany were taking a corner but when they gave away the ball they were short for numbers at the back. Italy raced up the pitch with Ricardo Montolivo who quickly spotted the excellent run of Balotelli down the centre. Montolivo’s brilliant pass found the striker, who expertly controlled it with his left foot before moving it onto his right foot, lashing the ball viciously past the German keeper.


8th place – Philip Lahm v Greece: At the 40 minute stage, with halftime looming,  Greece thought they had completed their first mission successfully- to keep the score 0-0. However they could in no way have prepared for what was to happen next. From a reasonably safe position, Germany’s captainPhilip Lahm received the ball. With his team mates struggling to make any creative runs Lamb decided to take some initiative and ran purposefully at the Greek defence. Before any of them could react he unleashed a swerving shot well past the flailing  goalkeeper.


7th place – Welbeck v Sweden: England had very few world class moments in this Euro 2012.  However when Danny Welbeck scored an outstanding winner against Sweden the fans finally had something to cheer about. The ball was crossed in by Theo Walcott towards a well-marked Welbeck. With the ball heading to him at such an awkward angle the defenders thought there could be no danger, but somehow the Manchster United forward managed to swivel and guide the ball into the far corner with his heel.


  6th place – Van Der Vaart v Portugal: The Dutch captain received the ball on the edge of the box and straight away the Portugal defence knew they were in trouble. The midfielder got the ball out of his feet before curling an audacious shot into the far corner and past the stranded goalkeeper. They could not however keep that lead as they lost 2 – 1, meaning they were ousted from the competition with three losses.


 5th place – Jakub Blaszczykowsky v Russia: The Polish captain played played a one-two with his team mate before using his speed to rush past the Russian full-back Yuri Zhirkov. In a flash he unleashed an unstoppable left-footed shot which fizzed through the air leaving the goalkeeper with no chance. The whole of Poland went crazy  as they secured a one all draw with the European giants Russia.

4th place – Mario Gomez v Holland: Gomez made a clever run in-between the Holland defence which was of course found by the talent of Sebastian Schweinsteiger. The forward raced onto the ball, and in a tight position he managed to smash a shot past the goalkeeper and into the top corner.


 3rd place – Andrea Pirlo: Mario Balotelli won a free kick about 25 yards out just left of centre. Italian maestro Pirlo was given free kick duty and did not disappoint anyone. He curled the ball up and over the Croatian wall leaving the helpless keeper with no chance. This was the only free kick goal of the tournament which goes to show what a difficult skill scoring directly from a set piece is.

2nd place – Mario Balotelli v Ireland: As Italy were holding a 1 – 0 lead the only man in the box for their corner was Balotelli. The cross was aimed towards him where he was surrounded by several Irish defenders. However he improvised brilliantly and hooked in an amazing volley with his back to goal. The ball flew past the keeper who wondered what had just happened.

 1st place – Zlatan Ibrahimovic v France: The ball was lofted high into the box towards the unmarked Zlatan Ibrahimovic who adjusted his body, leapt off the ground and acrobatically volleyed the ball well out of the reach of the keeper and into the bottom corner. The goal was special because he displayed perfect technique,  achieving a so-called ‘playstation’ goal given the outrageous nature of the strike.




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