Euro 2012 TV Schedule

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[UPDATE: The June 16 matches have switched networks. Czech Republic vs. Poland will air on ESPN and Greece vs. Russia will air on ESPN2]

Sergio Ramos, Xabi Alonso, Juan Mata, Andres Iniesta, David Villa

Can Anyone Sink Spain In Euro 2012?

As it was four years ago, the 2012 UEFA European Championship (June 8-July 1) is Spain’s to lose. The defending European and World Cup champions are the favorites heading into the quadrennial tournament, held this year in Poland and Ukraine. Here’s a breakdown of the groups and their top contenders:

Group A: Poland, Greece, Russia, Czech Republic

Of all the teams competing, the Greeks may need a win the most. Given the country’s recent struggles, Euro success would give the beleaguered nation a much-needed morale boost. And, after going unbeaten in qualifying, the Euro 2004 winners could very well pull it off. Tournament cohost Poland gained automatic entry, and has a golden opportunity to escape the Group Stage for the first time. Borussia Dortmund forward Robert Lewandowski (pictured), who finished third in Bundesliga scoring, is the team’s biggest threat.

Group B: Netherlands, Denmark, Germany, Portugal

This is the loaded draw that makes fans moan for all the finals that will never be, the dreaded Group of Death. Each squad could threaten for the championship, but only two can move on to the knockout rounds. Netherlands and Germany are the most likely contenders to advance and ultimately challenge Spain for the title. Sorry, Cristiano.

Group C: Spain, Italy, Ireland, Croatia

Unfortunately for the boys in green, Ireland was drawn into the second of two very stacked groups. Italy has recovered well from the disaster of World Cup 2010, where they finished last in their group. Andrea Pirlo (pictured) had a career season with Juventus this year, and his deep midfield play is integral to the national team’s success.

Spain still boasts one of the most impressive rosters in soccer history, with world-class stars like Xavi Hernandez, goalkeeper Iker Casillas and Andrés Iniesta leading a tremendous crop of youngsters. However, striker David Villa’s leg injury will keep him out of the Euro, and the squad showed weaknesses in recent international friendlies. Then again, if there’s one thing the Spanish team knows, it’s how to win the important games.

Group D: Ukraine, Sweden, France, England

England has a wealth of individual talent, but still hasn’t pieced those players into a cohesive national team that can perform in high-pressure situations. The Euro will be the first big test for new manager Roy Hodgson, who officially took over in May. Sweden and France looked dangerous in qualifying, while cohost Ukraine is not expected to do much. Given past meltdowns from several of these teams on the national stage, and the fact that England’s best player, Wayne Rooney, is unavailable for the first two matches (a ban he was handed after a straight red card in qualifying), this group is really anyone’s guess.

 

Euro 2012 Group Draws (FIFA World Ranking as of June 6)

Group A
Poland (#62)
Greece (#15)
Russia (#13)
Czech Republic (#27)

Group B
Netherlands (#4)
Denmark (#9)
Germany (#3)
Portugal (#10)

Group C
Spain (#1)
Italy (#12)
Republic of Ireland (#18)
Croatia (#8)

Group D
Ukraine (#52)
Sweden (#17)
France (#14)
England (#6)

 

UEFA Euro 2012 TV Schedule

All times Eastern. Schedule subject to change. All matches can be streamed live on ESPN3.com. All matches air in Spanish on ESPN Deportes.

Date/Time            Match (TV Network)

Friday, June 8

12pm — Group A: Poland vs. Greece (ESPN)
2:45pm — Group A: Russia vs. Czech Republic (ESPN)

Saturday, June 9

12pm — Group B: Netherlands vs. Denmark (ESPN)
2:45pm — Group B: Germany vs. Portugal (ESPN)

Sunday, June 10

12pm — Group C: Spain vs. Italy (ESPN)
2:45pm — Group C: Republic of Ireland vs. Croatia (ESPN)

Monday, June 11

12pm — Group D: France vs. England (ESPN)
2:45pm — Group D: Ukraine vs. Sweden (ESPN)

Tuesday, June 12

12pm — Group A: Greece vs. Czech Republic (ESPN)
2:45pm — Group A: Poland vs. Russia (ESPN)

Wednesday, June 13

12pm — Group B: Denmark vs. Portugal (ESPN)
2:45pm — Group B: Netherlands vs. Germany (ESPN)

Thursday, June 14

12pm — Group C: Italy vs. Croatia (ESPN2)
2:45pm — Group C: Spain vs. Republic of Ireland (ESPN2)

Friday, June 15

12pm — Group D: Ukraine vs. France (ESPN2)
2:45pm — Group D: Sweden vs. England (ESPN2)

Saturday, June 16

2:45pm — Group A: Czech Republic vs. Poland (ESPN*) (Updated 6/14)
2:45pm — Group A: Greece vs. Russia (ESPN2) (Updated 6/14)

Sunday, June 17

2:45pm — Group B: Portugal vs. Netherlands (ESPN)
2:45pm — Group B: Denmark vs. Germany (ESPN2*)

Monday, June 18

2:45pm — Group C: Croatia vs. Spain (ESPN)
2:45pm — Group C: Italy vs. Republic of Ireland (ESPN2*)

Tuesday, June 19

2:45pm — Group D: England vs. Ukraine (ESPN)
2:45pm — Group D: Sweden vs. France (ESPN2*)

Thursday, June 21

2:45pm — Quarterfinal I: Czech Republic vs. Portugal (ESPN)

Friday, June 22

2:45pm — Quarterfinal II: Germany vs. Greece (ESPN)

Saturday, June 23

2:45pm — Quarterfinal III: Spain vs. France (ESPN2)

Sunday, June 24

2:45pm — Quarterfinal IV: England vs. Italy (ESPN)

Wednesday, June 27

2:45pm — Semifinal I: Winners QF I vs. QF III (ESPN)

Thursday, June 28

2:45pm — Semifinal II: Winners QF II vs. QF IV (ESPN)

Sunday, July 1

2:45pm — Final: Winners SF I vs. SF II (ESPN)

 

*Airs tape-delayed on ESPN Deportes at 5:30pm ET

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Photos: Action Press/ZUMAPRESS.com (Spanish team, Robert Lewandowski); Panoramic/ZUMAPRESS.com (Andrea Pirlo)

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