Your correspondent has held steadfast to his goal of watching (more or less) every minute of the 2012 UEFA European Championships, at the expense of a balanced social life, physical fitness goals, and general mental health. Watching three hours of fútbol per day for the better part of a month is grueling, but becomes less so once England is customarily eliminated in the quarterfinals in a penalty shoot-out, as was the case yesterday against the Eye-talians.
It’s partly because there is less soccer to be watched once we reach the latter stages of the tournament, but mostly because I can watch the remainder of the competition as a mere neutral observer, hoping for entertainment rather than praying to Thor and His Hammer for every unlikely result that would guide England to glorious victory in the final.
Of course, to get to the final you must find a way not to lose in the quarterfinal. The boys from In-ger-lund have been unable to manage this since Euro ’96 in England, when playing at the old Wembley Stadium they (rather improbably) beat Spain in a penalty shootout before losing to ze eventual winners, ze Germans, on penalties in the semifinals. England has gone out on spot kicks in major tournaments in 1990, 1996, 1998, 2004, 2006, and now 2012.
/kills self [Read more…]