Laurent Blanc stood down as coach of the French national team Saturday in the wake of their quarterfinal exit at Euro 2012.
KIEV, Ukraine -- What's at stake when Spain meets Italy in the Euro 2012 final here on Sunday? For the Spanish, the final (ESPN/3/Deportes, 2:45 p.m. ET) provides the chance to take their place in soccer lore as one of the greatest national teams in the history of the sport. No country has ever held two European Championships and the World Cup trophy at the same time. And for all the talk of Spain winning without playing at its best, you just can't argue with three major titles in a row.
Mario Balotelli's first-half double saw Italy through to the final of Euro 2012 as they stunned Germany in Warsaw.
Milan striker Alexandre Pato tells CNN that success at Euro 2012 can lift Italian soccer after its match-fixing scandals.
Italy's soccer players can heal the "suffering" caused by the country's match-fixing scandal by winning Euro 2012, says AC Milan star Alexandre Pato.
European football's governing body fined Germany's national soccer body ?25,000 ($31,000) Tuesday over what witnesses say was the display of neo-Nazi symbols by German fans at a Euro 2012 match.
Real Madrid's star player sits down for a 1 on 1 chat with CNN World Sport's Pedro Pinto.
Ferrari's Fernando Alonso became the first two-time winner of the unpredictable 2012 Formula One season as he triumphed in front of his home fans in Valencia to claim the European Grand Prix Sunday.
GDANSK, Poland -- If there's an equivalent to Tom Brady or Derek Jeter at Euro 2012, it has to be Spain's Xabi Alonso. Think about it. The guy wins trophies, whether he's with Spain or Real Madrid. He exudes class without appearing to try too hard, and he seems ready-made for a GQ cover shoot. More than any other player here, Alonso would look perfectly comfortable spraying passes from the central midfield in an Armani tuxedo.
Cristiano Ronaldo's late header sealed a deserved win for Portugal in the Euro 2012 quarterfinal clash against Czech Republic.
CNN's Pedro Pinto sits down with Georgios Samaras for a one on one talk about Greece's Euro 2012 dreams.
Greece striker Giorgios Samaras says the team's players are blocking out the political overtones of Friday's Euro 2012 quarterfinal against Germany.
"With extra officials you're aware of more things: the fear of getting caught is there. There's no more shirt-pulling, players know that the referee is there." At this point in his interview with Sky Sports, Michel Platini was doing reasonably well. We haven't seen the kind of holdups at set pieces, caused by pushing and shoving, to which we've become accustomed in club matches. Then, warming to the tune he was parping on UEFA's trumpet, Platini added an extra long note of satisfaction. "With five, officials see everything." If he hadn't already been reassessing his feelings on the matter, today's play might have forced him to.
The highly-fancied Russia team and co-hosts Poland crashed out of Euro 2012 on Saturday as the Czech Republic and Greece became the first nations to secure quarterfinal berths.
As national teams arrive in Poland and Ukraine, will the tournament be a football success or overshadowed by racism?
Euro 2012 hosts Ukraine were brought back down to earth after their opening match heroics as France clinched a 2-0 victory in stormy Donetsk.
European football's governing body opened disciplinary proceedings Saturday against Croatia over what it said was racist behavior by its supporters during a Euro 2012 match against Italy.
Former Czech Republic international, Patrick Berger was impressed with his side's display against Greece at Euro 2012.
Things done changed, as Notorious B.I.G put it. Back in the day (Monday), France and England tied 1-1 in what probably stands as the tournament's least entertaining game, while Ukraine was carried to the top of Group D by a sumptuous double from Andriy Shevchenko, beating Sweden. "We can't play like that against a very good team," said French coach Laurent Blanc afterwards. "I'm glad to get this game out of the way," said the English manager Roy Hodgson. "No one is happy and we grieve together," said the Swedish boss Erik Hamren. The only thing to stay the same in Group A on Friday was defeat for his side.
UEFA has had a busy time of it during Euro 2012 handing out fines and sanctions to various federations for undesirable behavior.
Sports journalist Michal Pol talks to CNN's Pedro Pinto about clashes between Polish and Russian supporters at Euro 2012.
Fernando Torres rediscovered his scoring touch as Spain soared to the top of Euro 2012 Group C and knocked the Republic of Ireland out of the tournament.
GDANSK, Poland -- The player who has produced the best moment of Euro 2012 is married to an American model, named his firstborn son after Michael Jordan and is an avid golfing member of the Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Md., just outside the nation's capital.
Three thoughts after Portugal's 3-2 victory over Denmark in Lviv, Ukraine.
Police in Poland have detained 184 people after tensions spiraled into violence as soccer fans gathered for a Euro 2012 game in Warsaw, police said Wednesday.
CNN's Richard Quest talks to Jeffrey Sachs, director of Earth Institute, about the European banks.
Euro 2012 is beginning to resemble the eurozone -- a case of sport imitating economics.
It was a day of howling sirens, blood-spattered pavement and the menacing thump of baton on riot shield as the warnings of violence before Poland's game with Russia proved to be distressingly accurate. As 5,000 Russians marched through Warsaw to celebrate their country's national day, they clashed with Polish hooligans. Police water cannons, tear gas, auditory grenades and 56 arrests were required to restore order.
CNN's live-blogging coverage of the Euro 2012 Group A matches between Greece and Czech Republic and co-hosts Poland and Russia.
The 82nd minute: Andriy Shevchenko raised his eyes to the stands for a moment, and then shook hands with each person on the Ukraine bench in turn before taking his seat. The crowd was still on its feet applauding. In a final warm-up match that Ukraine lost 2-0 to Turkey last week, Shevchenko played just 45 minutes and missed two good scoring chances, prompting mention of the dreaded R-word: retirement. It's a decision that he considered back in 2009 once Ukraine's World Cup qualification hopes were quashed, but one that he delayed with the knowledge that his country would be co-hosting Euro 2012. Today his brace gave Ukraine a win over Sweden in its first-ever European Championship fixture.
CNN's live text reporting on the Euro 2012 match between England and France, followed by Ukraine against Sweden in Monday's other Group D game.
GDANSK, Poland -- It was the game of the tournament so far in Euro 2012, a thrillingly open back-and-forth between the champions of World Cup 2010 (Spain) and World Cup 2006 (Italy). And when the smoke finally cleared, both sides came away with a point in a 1-1 tie that featured fascinating tactics (Spain's six starting midfielders; Italy's three-man back line), aggravating misses (Fernando Torres' miscues; Mario Balotelli's Leon Lett impression) and first-rate goalkeeping by two of the world's best, Iker Casillas and Gigi Buffon.
Denmark produced the first major surprise of Euro 2012 as Morten Olsen's side secured a 1-0 win over the Netherlands in Kharkiv.
Euro 2012 is underway. Follow the entire tournament with Georgina Turner and Ben Lyttleton, who will provide minute-by-minute commentary and analysis of every match. The second day of action continues with Germany-Portugal from Lviv, Ukraine. Our live blog kicks off at 2:30 p.m. ET.
A former star of the Polish national team has urged UEFA to confront the problem of racism that is threatening to overshadow Euro 2012.
CNN's Pedro Pinto reports on accusations of racism at the upcoming Euro 2012 tournament in Poland and the Ukraine.
The captain of the Dutch national team says his players were subjected to racial abuse at a training session in the Polish city of Krakow this week, just days before the Euro 2012 football tournament was due to begin in Poland and Ukraine.
There really is no argument at this point: The European Championship is the most competitive high-level soccer tournament in the world, even more so than the World Cup. When Euro 2012 starts on Friday with Poland-Greece (ESPN, noon ET) and Russia-Czech Republic (ESPN, 2:45 p.m. ET), every team will bring something to the table. The tournament has only 16 national teams (at least until it moves to 24 in four years), and so it's possible to have a first-round group of Germany, the Netherlands, Portugal and Denmark, four teams in the top 10 of the FIFA world rankings.
A huge chunk of Europe's male population is salivating at the imminent arrival of Euro 2012 -- a month long festival of football between the continent's best soccer sides.
CNN looks at the challenges that teams and host countries Poland and Ukraine faced to get to the Euro 2012 cup.
Germany's build-up to Euro 2012 suffered a setback Saturday with a 5-3 defeat to Switzerland in Basel.
Jim Boulden goes behind the scenes at Warsaw's Police HQ to find out how they plan to ensure a peaceful Euro2012.
Fans from across Europe will soon be traveling to Poland to support their teams during Euro 2012, but so too will police officers from each nation to keep an eye on them.
Euro 2012 hosts Ukraine and Poland have told CNN World Sport a documentary accusing football fans from both nations of racism was "unbalanced and biased."
Poland has spent billions to upgrade its infrastructure, but is it enough for Euro 2012 fans?
England coach Roy Hodgson has overlooked experienced international Rio Ferdinand for a second time after electing to call up Liverpool defender Martin Kelly as a replacement for the injured Gary Cahill.
Euro 2012 is almost upon us and Europe's finest footballers will be marked men -- in more ways than one.
Laurent Blanc takes France into Euro 2012 on a 20-game unbeaten run, which includes victories over Germany, England and Brazil. But the French national team coach is still downplaying his team's chances. France has not won a tournament finals match since the 2006 World Cup semifinal (it was winless at Euro 2008 and at the 2010 World Cup), and Blanc is quick to point out that France (ranked 16th) is currently listed nine spots lower than its first opponent, England (seventh), in the FIFA world rankings.
The Czech Republic needed a playoff win over Montenegro to make it to Euro 2012 after an uninspiring campaign during which it scored only 12 goals in eight games and lost at home to Lithuania. In fact, FA general manager Vladimir Smicer almost sacked coach Michal Bilek.
A European Championship without Europe's best player looked a possibility after Portugal drew its first qualifier 4-4 with Cyprus, then lost 1-0 to Norway. The Portuguese federation sacked Carlos Queiroz as coach and replaced him with Paulo Bento. Though he is the youngest coach at the Euros (42), Bento has shown no fear in making big decisions: he has fallen out with Ricardo Carvalho and Jose Bosingwa and banned them from the squad, while releasing the pressure on star Cristiano Ronaldo by moving him back out to the wing. That move was decisive as Portugal crushed Bosnia and Herzegovina in a playoff to reach the tournament.
France was the last nation to go into a tournament as reigning world and European champions, but its efforts to win a first "treble" in international history floundered dramatically after finishing last in Group A at the 2002 World Cup.
Euro 2012 is nearly here and the 16 competing nations have announced the final 23-man squads they hope will propel them to glory in Poland and Ukraine.
No one used the word reward, but the subtext was clear for all to see.
Sol Campbell and Keir Radnedge discuss the big challenges faced by new England manager Roy Hodgson.
Borussia Dortmund capped a second successive title-winning season by setting a new Bundesliga points record in the final round of matches on Saturday.
Football fans traveling to Ukraine for this summer's European Championships have been warned they will face a "criminal" police force mired in so many abuse scandals that their behavior threatens to ruin the showpiece tournament.
Roy Hodgson was appointed England manager on a four-year contract on Tuesday, ending months of speculation over who would lead the national team at Euro 2012.
Pressure is mounting on Ukraine to clean up its human rights record ahead of the Euro 2012 finals next month, with the EU Commission's president the latest high-profile leader to boycott the football championships.
Poland and Ukraine will host the European Championships for the first time in 2012, welcoming 14 other teams and football fans from across the continent.
Polish football fans have celebrated the launch of the biggest stadium for this year's Euro 2012 finals with a free music festival and fireworks display.
As 2011 comes to an end, it is time to look back and reflect on another remarkable sporting year.
CNN's Pedro Pinto talks to Arsenal goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny about the Euro 2012 finals in his native Poland.
Andriy Shevchenko has told CNN Sport's Pedro Pinto that the Euro 2012 finals in his native Ukraine will be his final major football tournament, and he is determined to end his international career on a high.
Ukrainian boxing star Vitali Klitschko hopes that co-hosting football's European Championship next year will help his country's bid to become part of the European Union.
CNN World Sport's Pedro Pinto talks with Ukrainian boxing champion Vitali Klitschko ahead of the Euro 2012 draw in Kiev.
UEFA president Michel Platini admits the build up to the 2012 European Championships in Poland and Ukraine has been a "complicated adventure" but predicted a successful soccer tournament when the action kicks off in June.
CNN's Pedro Pinto interviews UEFA's Michel Platini ahead of the draw for the 2012 European Championships.
The great and good of European football are assembling in the Ukrainian capital Kiev to learn the fate of the 16 nations involved. Poland and Ukraine will host the tournament, that kicks off on June 8, and with CNN World Sport's live commentary, you won't miss a thing.
With less than 200 days to go to Euro 2012 and the 16-team line-up for the four-yearly championship decided after a grueling qualifying campaign, football fans across Europe can start to look forward to the tournament in Poland and Ukraine.
Spain's world champions will begin the defense of their European title against fellow football superpowers Italy next June, after both were drawn in Group C on Friday.
CNN's Pedro Pinto breaks down next summer's Euro 2012 football match-ups.
Pedro Pinto goes on a whirlwind tour of Euro 2012 co-host Ukraine, visiting all the match sites in a day.
Germany underlined their impressive credentials ahead of Euro 2012 with a 3-0 thrashing of arch-rivals the Netherlands on Tuesday in Hamburg.
Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice as Portugal beat 10-man Bosnia-Herzegovina 6-2 on Tuesday to qualify for the Euro 2012 finals.
Defending champions Spain will head the list of group seeds in next month's draw for the Euro 2012 finals.
Summing up the state of affairs as we enter the second leg of the 2012 Euro playoffs:
Portugal will face Bosnia and Herzegovina for a place in Euro 2012 after the pair were drawn together in the playoffs to reach the finals in Poland and Ukraine next year.
Cristiano Ronaldo's Portugal must qualify for Euro 2012 through the playoffs after losing 2-1 to Denmark Tuesday night in Copenhagen.
Poland is getting ready for next years Euro 2012 football tournament and taking care to make it safe and secure.
In preparation for co-hosting next summer's Euro 2012 football championship, Poland has been transforming itself.
Germany made it seven wins out of seven with a comfortable victory over Azerbaijan to put themselves on the brink of qualification for Euro 2012.
Unfancied Belarus once again frustrated France in Euro 2012 qualifying action on Friday, earning a 1-1 draw at home to the Group D leaders.
As a co-host alongside Poland for Euro 2012, Ukraine is busily building up its infrastructure in time for the games.
UEFA have awarded a 3-0 victory to Italy after their Euro 2012 qualifying match with Serbia was abandoned due to violence.
UEFA have promised a "full and thorough investigation" into the violence that forced Italy's Euro 2012 qualifying match with Serbia to be abandoned on Tuesday night.
Substitutes Loic Remy and Yoann Gourcuff scored late goals as France boosted their Euro 2012 qualifying campaign with a 2-0 victory over Romania in the Stade de France on Saturday night.
Italy dropped their first points of the Euro 2012 campaign after being held 0-0 by minnows Northern Ireland on Friday night, but World Cup finalists Spain and the Netherlands maintained their 100 percent records along with Germany.
Former German international star Lothar Matthaeus is to take charge of the Bulgarian national team, it was announced Tuesday.
Argentina battled to victory on Wednesday night in the team's first match since Diego Maradona's reign ended, while new France coach Laurent Blanc suffered defeat after dropping all 23 World Cup players.
Germany coach Joachim Low has ended speculation over his future by signing a two-year contract extension in the wake of a successful World Cup campaign.
Poland is two years away from hosting this major sporting event, but is it ready? CNN's Frederik Pleitgen reports.
Football fever is already gripping Poland ahead of co-hosting the European Championships in 2012.
Russia coach Guus Hiddink has been named as Turkey's new national team manager after agreeing a two-year contract starting in August.
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