'Croatia can win it. There have been surprises in the past' - Liam Brady

If Chippy’s predictions are correct, Ireland chances of getting beyond the group stages are looking even slimmer.

Brady at the launch of RTE's Euro 2012 coverage yesterday.
Brady at the launch of RTE's Euro 2012 coverage yesterday.
Image: ©INPHO/James Crombie

LIAM BRADY BELIEVES Ireland’s Group C opponents Croatia have what it takes to go all the way.

The former midfield general, who was capped 72 times at international level, made the surprise prediction while discussing the upcoming European Championships alongside his fellow RTE pundits at the station’s launch of their Euro 2012 coverage yesterday.

Ireland face a stern test to get beyond their three group fixtures with the Croats, Spain and Italy with many expecting an early exit.

And Brady believes the 8th-placed side in the world, who the Boys in Green play on June 10, possess a blend of talent, strength and national pride which could see them go far in Poland and Ukraine.

When asked who he would tip to emerge victorious, the ex-Arsenal player picked Slaven Bilic’s side, pointing out Greece’s unlikely win in 2004, before adding that Spain have the best set of players at their disposal.

Croatia have the players,” said Brady, who added that Luka Modric was their main threat. “I always like to go for a team that has great players, who are tough men, play for their country and work very hard. I believe they will have a very good Euro 2012.

“There are four or five teams that you can rule out and the rest are in with a chances. I don’t think Ireland can win, I’ll be honest about that. I don’t think the host nations can do it either. Then, the winners could come from anywhere else.”

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Liam Brady was speaking at the launch of RTE Sport’s Euro 2012 coverage. They will show all 31 games live over the course of 24days with analysis from John Giles, Liam Brady, Eamon Dunphy, Kenny Cunningham, Richard Sadlier and Dietmar Hamann.

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