The Plight of the Poles: Poland at Euro 2012

For the first time in history, the Polish National Team have made back to back appearances at the UEFA European Football Championship. Co-hosting the event, the Poles entered the tournament courtesy of automatic qualification. Coach Franciszek Smuda is adamant to make improvements on their exploits the last time out, when they were eliminated from the group stages at Euro 2008 in Austria and Switzerland, managing only a single point from their three group games. However, this time round the draw been kind to them.

While their squad for the 2012 edition of the European Championship is by no means among the best in the continent, Smuda brings a wealth of managerial experience with him, and the trio from the Bundesliga outfit Borussia Dortmund consisting of captain Jakub Blaszczykowski, Lucas Piszczek and the talismanic Robert Lewandowski in attack, have the opportunity to make an impression and carry the hopes of an entire nation beyond all expectations.

Their run-in to the tournament has been pretty impressive however, with the team managing a goalless draw withPortugal and picking up consecutive 1-0 wins against Latvia and Slovakia in quick succession.

With a defence that can be breached at will, there is no doubt that Poland will look to capitalise on their attacking prowess with captain Kuba acting as a source of inspiration. If Lewandowski can bring the sort of form that saw him notch 22 goals in last season’s Bundesliga campaign,Poland might just be the dark horses this summer. Like they say, home advantage is something you just can’t ignore!

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