EURO 2004 Football

England played well, Portugal played marginally better. England played with great determination and stamina and excellent behaviour. They deserved to win on that score even though Portugal was the better team technically. However, a poor decision by the referee was probably the deciding factor. I say probably, as you can never tell what the reaction would have been of the two teams if the goal had not been disallowed. Portugal might have scored again - though the English defence was extremely good under pressure and they had been under more pressure during the game than had Portugal.

But there is no reason to feel depressed about this. It's a game, and no harm is done by playing well and losing to a great home team. Personally I am proud of our team and still happy that Portugal won. I hope they go on to win the final. The ref will have a hard time though for overruling his linesman and getting it wrong. What is depressing is being told by TV commentators and news readers, even before the match that, if we don't win, the whole country will be miserable, depressed and ashamed and even industrial output will suffer. What is all this bollocks about! Only one team at a time can win these international competitions. Why should it be more important to any one country than any other? Great games well played, exciting matches to watch, an edge of the seat experience, what more can we ask of the teams?

The above was written straight after the match. Now they have shown the slow motion replays, it seems the ref was right anyway by accident. There was no pushing but the goalkeeper was restrained when he jumped for the ball.