Wednesday 18 October 2017

Euro 2012: Gomez laughs off criticism as former star Scholl labels striker a diver

Luke Edwards in Gdansk

He may be the tournament's joint-leading goalscorer, but Germany's Mario Gomez is still being singled out for criticism back home.

Gomez scored twice in the 2-1 win over Holland to take his tally in the tournament to three, but former Germany international Mehmet Scholl has accused the striker of diving too much.

Scholl is also a coach at Bayern Munich, where Gomez plays, yet he still mocked him during his work as a television commentator saying he was afraid the player would "develop bed sores" as he spent so much time on the floor.

"You score the winner against a tough opponent and you still get heaped on," said Gomez.

"But the coach told me to forget it all and that he was happy with the way I played.

"However, you still feel that you are under enormous pressure and it only eased after the match against the Netherlands."

Germany are living up to their pre-tournament billing as the side most likely to compete with Spain to become European champions and Gomez, who is half Spanish, admitted he would love to beat the land of his father.

fun

Spain knocked out Germany on their way to winning the European Championship in 2008 and again in the semi-final on their way to winning the World Cup two years later.

"I have been watching Spain a lot -- they are fun to watch, not only because I am half-Spanish," he said.

"They are one of the favourites, but we've been getting closer over the years."

Gomez's clinical finishes in Ukraine are in stark contrast to the form he showed against Chelsea in the Champions League final, where he missed several good opportunities.

But his quality cannot be doubted -- in the last two Bundesliga seasons, he scored 54 goals in 65 games for Bayern.

UEFA yesterday charged the Denmark forward Nicklas Bendtner with improper conduct, for revealing a sponsor's name on his underwear.

Bendtner is charged with breaking Law 4 of football, regarding players' kit and equipment, UEFA said.

The governing body's disciplinary panel will deal with the case on Monday.

After scoring against Portugal, Bendtner lifted his shirt and lowered his shorts to reveal the name of a betting firm. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Denmark (4-5-1, probable) -- Andersen; Jacobsen, Kjaer, Agger, Poulsen; Kvist, Poulsen, Mikkelsen, Eriksen, Krohn-Dehli; Bendtner.

Germany (4-5-1, probable) -- Neuer; Lahm, Badstuber, Hummels, Schmelzer; Schweinsteiger, Khedira, Muller, Ozil, Podolski; Gomez.

Denmark v Germany,

Live, tomorrow, RTE2/UTV, 7.45

Irish Independent

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport