What a wild ride! I’m still high from all the emotions from last night, and I still can’t believe it… I’m ecstatic. WE WON!!! If you follow football (soccer) at all, you know by now: PORTUGAL IS THE NEW EUROPEAN CHAMPION!
I suffered a lot in 2004, I’ve been suffering a lot since then, but this European championship made me suffer for a lot more than our 23 player on the field. We saw a slander campaign against us. For a whole month we endured all criticism, people saying we didn’t deserve anything, French reporters saying that our game was disgusting. They belittled our people and the 2 million portuguese immigrants living in their country. We saw coaches from another huge national teams saying that we stood no chance. They wrote articles saying how bad Ronaldo was. There was an overall lack of respect and sportsmanship in regards to the Portugal National Team.
Because of this, I have to say that our win tasted all that better.
It’s true we didn’t play the most gorgeous football ever. Yes, we went through the group phase with only draws. We played more minutes than any other team on the competition too. We also used all our player (apart from the other 2 goal keepers) because we had injuries and our scheme wasn’t settled. We also had a coach that always believed! He said from the start that they would only be back to Lisbon on July 11th, and damn him, he was right :D. We had a group that wanted it more than anything, and that had a great chemistry and relationship. We had a huge cohesion and a group that worked always towards a common goal: go through to the next phase and the next. And we had an amazing group of immigrants in France, who never gave up, who were there all along for our national team, supporting our boys and making them feel like they were at home.
Then we had such a tough game last night. The field was in the worst conditions ever, our captain, Cristiano Ronaldo was badly injured right at the beginning of the game, and he was in so much pain that he had to leave the game.
We suffered through the 90 minutes of the game, where Pepe and Rui Patricio were heroes. Then 30 minutes more and we finally did it. Eder, against all expectations, scored and everyone went wild. And then we did it!
WE WON! We’re the European Champions for the first time ever.
We have a Captain that is a TRUE CAPTAIN. Something has to be said about this guy, because his dream was to win something for Portugal, but he got injured and had to leave. He still did his job even outside the field. He supported them in the half time. And he was in the bench for all the last 30 minutes, supporting them, giving directions, helping his coach. He was motivating them! HE’S THE BEST CAPTAIN EVER! (and I might have cried when Nani gave him his Captain bracelet again).
WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS (of Europe), and I’ll be happy for awhile! 😀 A huge congratulations to these boys, they deserve this :D.