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Well we are halfway to the Euro 2008 semifinals and I am a sterling 0-2 in my picks.

But enough about me, lets talk football.

Two stunning matches have produced a pairing of Germany and Turkey in the first semifinal pairing. The way the two sides reached this point was equally impressive.

Germany shook itself out of its pool play doldrums for a 3-2 win over Portugal, which had looked like one of the more impressive teams in group play. The Germans out-muscled and overwhelmed the Portugal defense and goalie Ricardo on set pieces. Michael Ballack has recovered from a poor performance against Croatia to look like one of, if not the, most complete midfielder in the tournament. A scary thought for Turkey is that Miroslav Klose finally found the back of the net after being silenced in group play. Germany showed that it is a battle-tested and savvy side in its dismantling of Portugal and it will be hard to count them out from reaching the finals or winning it all.

Meanwhile Turkey is putting its fans and viewers on quite the rollercoaster ride. After a remarkable comeback against the Czech Republic to reach the quarterfinals, Turkey needed a deflected shot from Semih Senturk in the second minute of added time in the second over time period, just two minutes after Croatia had taken a 1-0 lead, to send the match to penalty kicks. There Turkey won 3-1 to move on. If there is one thing about Turkey, it is that it cannot be counted out. However, it will have to summon its entire resiliency against the Germans as Tuncay Sanli, Arda Turan and Emre Asik will miss the match because of yellow card accumulation. After what’s happened so far, it’s hard to bet against Turkey.

All I know is that I’m anticipating a thrilling match up of unlikely, yet worthy, opponents.

I won’t give away my fearless prediction just yet, I want to see how the quarters end first!


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