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Last Updated: Tuesday, 29 June, 2004, 07:26 GMT 08:26 UK
Euro 2004 diary
By Phil McNulty and Paul Fletcher
Our men in Portugal

Portugal midfielder Deco
The spotlight fell on Deco before he was upstaged by Stoichkov
Portugal midfielder Deco has been the subject of much discussion in the build-up to and during Euro 2004.

But he was seriously upstaged by an all-time great as he went public to discuss the semi-final against Holland.

Deco was a key part of Porto's Champions League-winning team - scoring in the final against Monaco and subsequently being chased by a host of clubs.

But as Deco spoke - and his manner off the field is as low-key as his play is flamboyant on it - the great Bulgarian striker Hristo Stoichkov entered the room.

It was a cue for all cameras to turn towards Stoichkov, working for Bulgarian television, and leave Deco out in the cold.

Deco rivalling Stoichkov? Deco may be good - but he's not that good!

Juventus took advantage of the profile offered by Euro 2004 to launch their new kit at a Lisbon hotel - with all the style, pomp and circumstances expected of the Old Lady of Italian football.

Vice-chairman and all-time great striker Roberto Bettega was in attendance, looking as suave as ever, with grey hair swept immaculately back.

And the room was appointed in a manner more akin to a Paris fashion show than the revelation of new strips.

Complete with carefully-assembled lighting and a classy array of food and drink, it showed Juventus know how to put on the style.

If they demonstrate as much class on the field as they do off it, then expect big things from the great old club next season.

Czech playmaker Tomas Rosicky has cheekily hinted that he would like to join a Premiership club.

The Borussia Dortmund midfielder conducted interviews in English after the Czechs won their Euro 2004 quarter-final with Denmark 3-0.

The 23-year-old laughed and joked with the English press, showing a boyish sense of humour.

And when asked whether a move to England would appeal to him, Rosicky replied: "Let's hope so."

Portuguese newspapers have a real meanness of spirit when it comes to player ratings.

After the Czechs' 3-0 win over Denmark, newspaper Journal de Noticias awarded two-goal Milan Baros an eight.

But Danish defender Thomas Helvig, perhaps the best right-back at Euro 2004, was only given three out of 10.

And Czech midfielder Tomas Rosicky, who never seems to give the ball away, was deemed worthy of a mere four.

The Scandinavian teams at Euro 2004 brought a lot to the tournament.

Sweden and Denmark not only contested an excellent 2-2 draw but brought an army of good-natured, fun-loving fans.

Alas, both crashed out at the quarter-final stage and only the journey home remains.

At hotels all over Porto on Tuesday, Danish fans were checking out and waving goodbye to Euro 2004.

Links to more Euro 2004 stories


Euro 2004 diary
28 Jun 04  |  Euro 2004
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25 Jun 04  |  Euro 2004
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23 Jun 04  |  Euro 2004
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22 Jun 04  |  Euro 2004
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Euro 2004 diary
20 Jun 04  |  Euro 2004
Euro 2004 diary
19 Jun 04  |  Euro 2004
Euro 2004 diary
18 Jun 04  |  Euro 2004
Euro 2004 diary
17 Jun 04  |  Euro 2004
Euro 2004 diary
16 Jun 04  |  Euro 2004
Euro 2004 diary
15 Jun 04  |  Euro 2004
Euro 2004 diary
14 Jun 04  |  Euro 2004
Euro 2004 diary
13 Jun 04  |  Euro 2004
Euro 2004 diary
12 Jun 04  |  Euro 2004


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