It's all about sharing. Spain and Portugal share a border, two coastlines and an entire peninsula. They share a climate, a parallel political past and currently, a crisis. But right now, they also share a dream.
The two neighbouring nations come face to face in the semi-finals of Euro 2012 on Wednesday night and only one can progress to the continental competition's Sunday showpiece in Kiev. At 20:45 CET this evening, friendships are put on hold, rivalries renewed: the Iberian Clasico takes centre stage.
Spain have played Portugal more times than anyone else in their history, having met on 34 occasions (with 16 victories for La Roja, 12 defeats and six draws). The familiarity extends to football, with many Portuguese players plying their trade in Spain and three - Cristiano Ronaldo, Pepe and Fabio Coentrao - at Real Madrid.
Madrid, under fellow Portuguese Jose Mourinho, have found success in the form of a clinical counter-attacking style which got the better of Barcelona in La Liga last term, while Spain shape up much more like the Catalan club, with a passing and possession philosophy....more
03:47 PM, Jun 27, 2012
Vicente del Bosque insists that he is not paying the slightest bit of attention to the current criticism of Spain's style of play, arguing that no matter what anyone else says, he knows he is in possession of an "enviable team". La Roja drew widespread praise for the way in which they went about winning Euro 2008 but there were some murmurings of disapproval during their successful 2010 World Cup...
10:10 AM, Jun 26, 2012