It Was A Disaster - But Tim Krul Can Hold His Head High!
By Footy Mad - Editor
Updated Friday, 22nd June 2012
Two countries probably wished they had never qualified for Euro 2012 - Holland and Ireland - and it was a tale of two past and present goalkeepers.
Shay Given has insisted the dust must be allowed to settle before an accurate assessment can be made on Republic of Ireland's European Championship flop.
The post-mortem into Ireland's trip to Poland and Ukraine, where they failed to pick up a point from their three group games, was set to continue, amid fears Giovanni Trapattoni's men embarrassed themselves on their return to the biggest stage.
Given, who looked well out of sorts in the competition, admitted it was hard to find positives after they conceded nine times - scoring just once - during their three Group C matches.
Shay Given: "We've just lost three games, so positives are thin on the ground.
"We came here before the tournament expecting to do better.
"Things are hurting at the minute, but when you look at the bigger picture in a few months' time then maybe you'll see some positives.
"We went into the tournament with plenty of confidence and looking forward to it.
"But it's just shown the standard of teams you're up against when you get to major finals.
"Especially Spain. We all know how they played and even Croatia were a very strong team as well.
"You know when you get to the finals, you're up against the elite players and the elite teams.
"I only trained two days before the very first game so that wasn't ideal, I suppose.
"But my sharpness? I don't know.
"I'm not making excuses.
"I was 100% fit to play, so when you cross the white line, it's over to you."
Newcastle Utd's current goalkeeper - Tim Krul - was not involved in Holland's disaster, so no-one was pointing a finger at him.
Holland winger Arjen Robben has hinted dressing-room unrest undermined their Euro 2012 challenge, which ended following a third successive defeat.
The Dutch went to Poland and Ukraine among the favourites to lift the trophy but failed to pick up a point in Group B, losing to Denmark, Germany and Portugal.
Robben: "Of course there were some internal issues but we will keep them indoors.
"The hunger in the team is there, but we failed together. And I mean the technical staff, the players, the whole team.
"This is the harsh reality of the sporting world. We must all, therefore, look in the mirror."