The Faroe Islands in Euro 08 Dynamite-Group
January 27, 2006: Euro 2008 Qualifying Draw:
The Faroe Islands were handed one of the toughest groups when they drew France, Italy, Ukraine, Scotland, Lithuania and Georgia in group B in the qualification
tournament for the European championship in Austria and Switzerland in 2008.
The Faroe Islands are probably not the favorites to qualify (ahem:-), but they aren't going to surrender without a fight. But are there any chances for points at all?
Against the top 3 teams, France, Italy and Ukraine, it's very unlikely, but the Faroes will fancy their chances against Scotland and Lithuania, from whom they have taken points from previously, and will also hope to get something from Georgia.
It's only about 4 months since the Faroes were torn apart by a well-oiled France-team in Lens, which France won 3-0, but on home soil in September 2004, the Faroes provided France with some stiff opposition, but although the Faroes lost 2-0, they proved, that on a good day, a draw against a top nation is not just fantasy thinking.
Previous results against France:
Sep. 8, 2004, Tórshavn: Faroe Islands – France, 0-2 (0-1) WC 06 Qual.
Sep. 03, 2005, Lens: France – Faroe Islands 3-0 (2-0) WC 06 Qual.
But having said that, it would be fairytale-stuff if the Faroes could get a point (or three) against Italy. And nothing would please the Faroese “men” more than to queer the pitch for the Italian “fashion models”… [sarcastic grin]
Previous results against Italy:
Against the eastern European countries, the Faroe Islands have often run into heavy defeats, for example 8-1 against Yugoslavia and 7-0 against Rumania, and with Andriy Shevchenko in top form, the Faroese team will be a bit worried traveling to Ukraine.
Previous results against Ukraine:
Scotland has now become a tradition for the Faroe Islands as this is the 4th time they have been drawn together since the Faroes entered the qualification tournaments for the European championship and the World Cup in 1990. On both of the last 2 occasions, the Faroes have managed a draw at home and they hope that tradition will also continue. The Scottish supporters are very special and turn up in the Faroe Islands in great numbers.
Previous results against Scotland:
Oct. 12, 1994, Glasgow: Scotland – Faroe Isl. 5-1 (3-0) Euro 96 Qual.
June 07, 1995, Toftir: Faroe Isl. – Scotland 0-2 (0-2) Euro 96 Qual.
Oct. 14, 1998, Aberdeen: Scot. – Faroe Isl. 2-1 (2-0) Euro 2000 Qual.
June 05, 1999, Toftir: Faroe Isl. – Scotland 1-1 (0-1) Euro 2000 Qual.
Sep. 06, 2002, Toftir: Faroe Isl. – Scotland 2-2 (2-0) Euro 04 Qual.
Sep. 06, 2003, Glasgow: Scotland – Faroe Isl. 3-1 (2-1) Euro 04 Qual.
Lithuania drew 0-0 with the Faroe Island in a European Cup qualifier in Lithuania in 1998, but the Faroes have lost on 3 other occasions. The Faroes will hope to get a point this time again.
Previous results against Lithuania:
Oct. 10, 1998, Vilnius: Lithuania – Faroe Islands 0-0 Euro 2000 Qual.
Sep. 08, 1999, Tórshavn: Faroe Isl. – Lith. 0-1 (0-0) Euro 2000 Qual.
Oct. 10, 2002, Kaunas: Lithuania – Faroe Isl. 2-0 (2-0) Euro 2004 Qual. Sep. 10, 2003, Toftir: Faroe Isl. – Lithuania 1-3 (1-1) Euro 2004 Qual.
The Faroe Islands have never met Georgia before, but HB Tórshavn played against Georgian champions, FC WIT, in the Champions League in 2004 and lost 5-0 in Georgia but won 3-0 at home. In 2002 B36 Tórshavn lost 5-2 to Torpedo Kutaisi in Georgia and lost 1-0 at home in the Champions League. So it looks like the Faroese teams have a hard time in Georgia, but at home they perform much better, so hopefully the Faroe Islands can get a decent result against Georgia at home. The National team also usually performs relatively better than the club teams, who very often lose heavily on away soil.
Previous results against Georgia:
But this is a very strong group and it will be very difficult for the Faroe Islands to get any point at all. Three of those nations, France, Italy and Ukraine, qualified as top of their groups for the World Cup in Germany 2006, and that says
something about their strength. Two of them are also former World Cup Winners, France (1998) and Italy (1982, 1938, 1934).
But even if they are tough teams to meet, neither the players nor the fans will mind playing against the world stars of Italy and France. And the Faroese Soccer Association doesn't mind either, as those teams will undoubtedly draw full houses.
On the very top of most people's wish list would be England, but right after them, most fans would like to see the likes of
Italy, France, Germany, Spain and Holland and as we got two of those, most people will be very satisfied with the draw. And the Tartan Army of Scotland always makes a great party, so it looks like an exciting European qualification campaign for Austria and Switzerland 2008. First games are to be played on September 2, 2006.
All the groups:
Group A: Portugal, Poland, Serbia & Mont, Belgium, Finland, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan
Group B: France, Italy, Ukraine, Scotland, Lithuania, Georgia, Faroe Islands
Group C: Greece, Turkey, Norway, Bosnia, Hungary, Moldova, Malta
Group D: Czech Republic, Germany, Slovakia, Rep of Ireland, Wales, Cyprus, San Marino
Group E: England, Croatia, Russia, Israel, Estonia, Macedonia, Andorra
Group F: Sweden, Spain, Denmark, Latvia, Iceland, Northern Ireland, Liechtenstein
Group G: Holland, Romania, Bulgaria, Slovenia, Albania, Belarus, Luxembourg