I was so Icelandic yesterday that I didn’t drop a post here. Iceland is the talk of Europe, somewhat similar to Greece in 2004. But that will be too much of a comparison seeing that they only defeated a mere English side.
Brexit may be the talk on CNN and BBC, but the exit of England by the hands of less fancied Iceland took Europe by surprise. Guided by the highest paid coach in the Euros, the Three Lions showed the world how overhyped they are – mere cubs meowing around with loudspeakers that convert meows to roars.
The Premier League is popular and is the most watched soap opera in the world but when the three lions exhibit such display in knockout football, you pondering knows no limit. Since 1966, England have won just 6 games in knockout phases of international competitions. Shame. Rooney taught he had started a revival but Ragnar Sigurdsson equalized almost immediately.
I was so sure that Iceland would see off England but I am no betting man else I would have been a couple of quids richer. England were unbeaten against Iceland but their previous (2) meetings have been mere friendlies. Their first competitive meeting was 2 days ago with a 2-1 victory for Iceland.
We live in a world where the media will hype the popular but if you look between the lines, you would see how far the Icelandic nation have come.
Ranked 38th and in pot 5 during the qualifying draw, Iceland were grouped with the Netherlands, Czech Republic, Turkey, Latvia and Kazakhstan. They defeated Netherlands home and away, lost just two games to Turkey and Czech and qualified as 2nd from the group.
At the 2016 Euros, Ronaldo’s Portugal couldn’t beat them. They defeated Austria and progressed from the group as 2nd, behind Hungary who they drew with. The fairytale continues with hosts France in the quarter final. Will they survive? Maybe.
When I think of Iceland, I think of Hiccup and Toothless in How To Train a Dragon. My mind gets interwoven with Jon Snow, the free folks and Winterfell in Game of Thrones and I will not be wrong to say “Iceland is the team in the North”. No Lord Bendtner and Denmark.
From the Arsenal perspective, we have Ozil (Germany), Szczesny (Poland), Ramsey (Wales), Giroud and Koscielny (France) left in the Euros. Will any come back with a medal?
Away from the Euros, Nigeria’s sole representative in the CAF Champions League will face Sundowns today in South Africa. It is a win or win game for the Elephants. Nothing else will be accepted.
That is all for today.
Bonus: Lars Lagerback is Iceland’s coach. Hello Nigeria.
In the spirit of Iceland