Spain are brilliant but it’s Georgia that have impressed me at Euro 2024 says Collymore

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Euro 2024 has been a fairly mixed bag of games, as might have been expected.

Spain have sailed through the tournament so far and look to be the favourites for most people ahead of the quarter-finals.

Notwithstanding that they’ll have to get past hosts, Germany, there are still some heavyweights left in the competition that might have something to say about whether it’s La Roja that lifts the trophy or not.

One team that has already exited the competition is Georgia, and CaughtOffside columnist, Stan Collymore, was hugely impressed with their – and Turkey’s – contribution.

Georgia playing with so much joy

“For me, the teams that have impressed me the most have been Georgia and Turkey. Georgia came into this tournament like ‘this is it, this is as good as it gets,’ and they’ve just gone for it. Turkey is a different animal because of the Turkish media,” he said for his exclusive column.

“You know it’s a big football in nation but they’ve always underachieved, just as England have underachieved.

“When I look at the talent that they’ve got… Demiral, Ayhan, Guler, Kokcu, Yildiz and Yilmaz – they have been superb. Getting the ball, turning with it, running with it, creating chances, sitting on the counter.

“Austria were very good overall and might have qualified on another day with a little bit more look. It was nice to see Marko Arnautovic back in the big time too.

“If I’m looking at other nations that you’re expecting to be there or thereabouts, you can’t really look much beyond Spain. Obviously the young lads, Lamine Yamal and Nico Williams are exceeding all expectations.

Spain have been brilliant at Euro 2024

“The squad have stuck with the remit of the 2010/2012 Spanish team but with a bit more flair. A big shout out for Rodri too. When you look at players in the big leagues that are mentally and physically fatigued, this guy is managing his minutes extraordinarily well. He seems to play at 70% pace all the time, so you’ve never really seen him making long, bursting runs and his timing is great. He’s a very big man. He’s a very big, physically impressive athlete. And obviously he weighed in with a cracking goal against against Georgia.

“Ah yes, Georgia. Mikautadze, Kvaratskhelia and their team-mates had been playing with so much joy, with so much happiness… unless someone wins the Euros by scoring a hat-trick in the final or something amazing, I think that a lot of people will be nodding in agreement that the attacking play of the Georgians at their very best has been great to watch.

“It’s a festival, a celebration at the end of a European season, or at the end of a global season, where all of these amazing countries come together and entertain us in the sunshine.

“So for me, Georgia have been the team to watch at this season’s tournament.”

Turkey remain in the competition of course, and they’ll be hoping to spring a surprise and beat the Netherlands, thus setting up a semi-final with either Switzerland or England.

More Stories arnauto Khvicha Kvaratskhelia Lamine Yamal Nico Williams Rodri Stan Collymore

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