Euro 2012: Underdogs Who Will Fall Short of Stunning Quarterfinals Berth
Everyone loves to see the underdog triumph, especially when we get to witness Cristiano Ronaldo crying in the aftermath.
The little guys have already turned up in big ways at Euro 2012.
Thus far, we have seen Czech Republic (somehow) finish first in Group A, Greece prevail (by the skin of their teeth) and Denmark come oh so close to causing an upset in the Group of Death.
With two more groups still hanging in the balance, here are the sides that will follow in the Danes' footsteps and crash out of the tournament.
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Croatia have been impressive and remain undefeated in Group C.
As things stand, Spain are atop the group with four points, Croatia are second on goal difference, Italy are in third with two points and the dismal Republic of Ireland sit in last with zero.
With only one game remaining, it seems as though Croatia have every chance of progressing to the quarterfinals.
Hold on a second, though. Who do the Croats play in their final match?
Oh yeah, that's right, reigning European and World Cup champions Spain.
The Spanish got off to a slow start in group play, drawing 1-1 with Italy, but looked like a force to be reckoned with in their 4-0 drubbing of Ireland.
Italy go into the day with all the pressure on their shoulders, but should (if all goes according to plan) destroy the Irish.
Assuming they do so, they will finish the group on five points.
That leaves it to Croatia to salvage at least a draw against Spain, which is unlikely with Torres and Co. kicking things up into top gear. But anything is possible.
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As we head into the final round of group matches, co-hosts Ukraine are still very much in contention for a quarterfinals berth.
The Ukrainians are currently sitting on three points in Group D, respectable considering they are ranked No. 52 in the world (second lowest in the tournament).
England and France are considered heavy favorites to advance, but a shocking victory over the Three Lions would be enough to propel the nation to dream land.
The odds are undeniably stacked against them.
Coming off the back of a rousing 3-2 result against Sweden, England should be champing at the bit.
Striker Wayne Rooney has served his two-match suspension and is expected to return and wreak havoc on the fragile Ukrainian back line.
Seemingly all systems go for the top dogs.
If Ukraine can find inspiration from talismanic captain Andriy Shevchenko, however, then who knows? An upset could be in the cards.
Can't wait to see what transpires.