Portugal calm despite win-or-bust Denmark testJune 13th, 2012 - 12:33 am ICT by IANS
Lviv (Ukraine), June 12 (IANS/RIA Novosti) Portugal have no reason for alarm despite realistically needing a win against Denmark, who beat the Netherlands in a shock opener, to remain at Euro 2012, coach Paulo Bento said Tuesday.
The Danes took the lead in Group B, the competition’s so-called group of death, courtesy of Michael Krohn-Dehli’s first-half effort against the Dutch and combined tenacity with luck to see out the result.
Portugal lost by the same score to Germany, one of the title favorites, after Mario Gomez’s header, but the positivity Portugal showed in going forward means all the ingredients for goals are already there, Bento insisted.
“We don’t have any reason for anxiety,” the 42-year-old coach said ahead of Wednesday’s clash in Lviv.
“We lost to one of the favorites in a way that was very good.”
Denmark won Group H to qualify for Euro 2012 in first place ahead of Portugal after beating them 2-1 in the final game, though Portugal had beaten Denmark 3-1 in the first encounter in Lisbon.
“We are confident,” Bento said. “It’s true that we have to win against Denmark,” but “a lot of time has passed” since the last defeat, he said.
He said Denmark’s shock victory over the Dutch came as no surprise.
“Even when you play against strong teams like Holland, the team knew it was important to close the gaps in midfield,” Bento said.
He hinted that he would deploy the same side that lost to Germany, with Cristiano Ronaldo and Nani down the flanks and Helder Postiga the target man up front.
“My opinion about the last game is that we could easily have achieved a better result,” he said.
Germany could do Denmark a huge favor if they beat the Netherlands in Wednesday’s other game.
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Tags: clash, dehli, euro 2012, final game, first encounter, flanks, gaps, helder postiga, krohn, last game, lisbon, mario gomez, nani, paulo bento, positivity, ria novosti, ronaldo, target man, tenacity, vd