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Euro 2012
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Vacancier Permanent Offline
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Euro 2012
Any of you guys follow the European Football championship that started today? This event is held every 4 years in between World Cups and this year's edition is co-hosted by 2 countries that are very popular in these forums, Poland and Ukraine. This thread will be about the actuall football tournament and the matches.

So any footie hard core fans in here? Who are you cheering for?

The first 2 games today saw Poland and Greece tied at 1-1. I was expecting the Poles to win this one comfortably specially after their very promising first half where they could have scored 2-3 easily but managed only 1. In the 2nd half, despite a red card, Greece managed to not only tie it but almost won it after they missed a penalty.

In the 2nd game, the Ruskies crashed the Czechs 4-1. I expected the Russians to be strong but not that strong and I was thoroughly dissapointed by the Czechs, who are usually very hard to break down and quite tricky to play. The Ruskies just consolidated their tag as the fav of a rather weak group A where unless a catastrophy, they should cruise in their 2 remaining games.

Tomorrow, we'll the games of what is considered the group of death, Group B, the toughest group with Germany, Holland, Portugal and Denmark. Germany and Holland are head and shoulders the class acts of this group and 2 of the 3 heaviest favorites to win it this year, with Spain.

Portugal has a good team but I don't see them competing with the likes of Holland and Germany where they will be overpowered. Portugal does have the talent and players to get out of this group but they'd need to play 3 perfect games and need to have Cristiano do what he has yet to do: deliver at an international tournament for Portugal.

Sunday, we'll have Group C's games where Spain, the defending World and European champs, along side Croatia and Ireland. Spain look untouchable while the Italians are always a mystery. They're being hunted by the yet again corruption/match fixing scandal in the Italian league. They have some interesting and good players but are far from the great Italian teams of the past. They'd have to battle hard with the Croats to fight for the 2nd spot in the group behind the mighty Spaniards.

Finally, monday sees my team France get on the always overrated English team. We have a good team, a good bunch of players, a strong attack, but defensively, there's a question mark, specially with that clown of Mexes who is more of a liability than anything. After a disastrous campaign 2 years ago in the World Cup in South Africa, we've been having again a competent coach with Laurent Blanc who has rejuvenated the team and it looks he's on the right track. We haven't lost in 21 games going back to Sept 2010. In the process we've beaten the English at Wembley in Nov 2010, Brasil in Feb 2011 in Paris and beaten mighty Germany in Germany this year in Feb. Mind you all were friendly games but they're a good indication of a team's strength. Monday, the first game against England will be huge. We need to win this game to start on the right foot and take off some of the pressure off of us. Sweden and Ukraine are the other 2 teams in Group D with France and England.

It's going to be 3 weeks of great football. A European Championship is much harder and demanding than a World Cup in that the Euro has no weak team as it's always the case in the World Cup where the real World Cup starts only from the 1/4 finals where the big guns are left. A lot of top players who have played in both the Euro and World Cup have said numerous times than the Euro is harder to play and to win than a World Cup and I totally agree with them. While a World Cup is more exotic and colorful, a European Championship is more intense from Game 1 as there are no banana teams in a Euro.

The only concern that might put a damp on this tournament is the real thread of racism and racist chants during the matchs in Poland and some parts of Ukraine. The Dutch players were greeted with monkey sounds during a practice and their captain, Mark Van Bommel has said that if they hear any monkey chants during the match, he'll go to the ref to ask him to stop the match. Italy's hot heated eccentric black forward, Mario Balotelli has also threatened to leave the field if he were to hear any monkey sounds during the match. Sol Campbell for former England defender has also warned the black/indian and other non white English fans to remain at home and not go to Ukraine/Poland in fear of racist chants/violent behaviour from the racists/punks in Poland and Ukraine. So this is a serious and real threat, let's hope it's not going to taint the tournament.

The bookmaker's favorites to win the tournamet are:

1) Spain
2) Germany
3) Holland
4) France

And these are also my pick for the top 4 teams to reach the semi-finals and from there, anything can happen. An injury to a key player, a sending off, a crucial ref decision going for you or against you or a team peaking at the right time so anything can happen from the 1/2 finals onward. Of course, as a Frenchie, I'll be 1000% for my team. And to be honest and realistic, I don't see us winning it this year, but I'd be delighted to be positively surprised.

Germany look mighty strong as always, but this year's team, despite being the youngest team in the tournament, is filled with talent, specially in midfield. Spain, the other mega favorites, are a bit weakened by the absence of 2 pillars in the likes of Puyol and Villa, the 2 Barcelona players who are injured. Holland have a phenomenal fire power with the likes of Van Persie, Huntelaar, Robben, Van der Vaart etc...All in all, it's going to be a great 3 weeks of top class football and I can't wait to watch some of these mouth watering matches!
06-08-2012 09:15 PM
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freshcream Offline
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Post: #2
RE: Euro 2012
Hopefully racism won't ruin the event...

I don't really root for anyone, as Norway didn't qualify.

I did believe in Russia, and I still do. Not so sure they will make it all the way though.
Germany or Holland for me, I'm already bored by Spain...
06-08-2012 09:49 PM
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Sentrix Offline
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RE: Euro 2012
Amazed at the Netherlands' inability to finish earlier today. I don't think I've ever seen them lack both creativity and finishing at the same time, but that was clearly the issue. Van Persie was horrendous, Robben was selfish, and the back four were mediocre at best, often giving up big opportunities on the counter or even during standard play. Wesley Sneijder was the only player on the Dutch team that did anything for me today. Such a disappointing 0-1 defeat.

The Germany-Portugal game pretty much went as expected. A little surprised that Gomez scored during a major competition, lol.

Tomorrow's Italy-Spain game should be great.
06-09-2012 03:58 PM
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Vacancier Permanent Offline
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RE: Euro 2012
I was also very dissapointed with Holland's performance. I was hoping a LOT more from them. I mean no team in the world has the talent up front that they have and they missed quite a few chances early on that proved crucial at the end. This defeat should serve them as a wake up call or they'll be out by the next game against Germany. At the end, Holland should have had a penalty kick in their favor as a Dane defender handed the ball not once but twice after Huntelaar chested the ball in the area.

Germany, I wasn't very impressed by them. They were lucky as Portugual missed a few chances that could have seen them at least draw if not win it had they had a half decent striker. Looking forward for tomorrow's games!
06-09-2012 06:41 PM
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rudebwoy Away
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Post: #5
RE: Euro 2012
Holland has always been one of my fave teams, but they are chokers sorry to say. I think they are in big trouble now because Denmark looks in a good position to advance, they will not be afraid of Portugal.

Czech were poor, how is Milan Barros still playing? Russia looked strong, Arshavin looked to be back to his old tricks.

Greece should have won the opener, I think they were the better team.

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06-09-2012 07:30 PM
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El Rey Offline
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RE: Euro 2012
Was anyone really surprised by Netherlands shitting the bed?? Van Persie hasn't done shit on the national squad for a while now, and Robben creates, creates, and creates, but he doesnt't finish a damn thing. The inexperienced defense was going to do them in anyway.

La Furia Roja! Got my Iniesta jersey washed and ready, looking forward to seeing Spain tomorrow. Will be interesting to see what form Torres and Pedro are in.
06-10-2012 01:08 AM
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The Fantasist Away
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RE: Euro 2012
Will be supporting England but with no real hope of getting beyond the quarter finals. I'd like to see both the host countries get out of the group stages but with Poland starting poorly it seems unlikely for them unless they improve quickly.

If I had to bet I'd have a go on France who under Laurent Blanc seem to have re-invented themselves after the WC debacle. Their attack is fantastic but their defence would be the worry with Evra having had a poor season at United and Mexes just being a poor player imo. Unless Torres gets into form I can't see Spain doing it again,especially without the injured David Villa. Germany will be in the final I expect but with so many of their players coming fresh off of the CL final defeat in the Allianz I worry about their mental state if it comes down to extra time or penalties. Schweinsteiger looked destroyed after missing his penalty versus Chelsea and his bottle may just have left him in the way it did Robben after his ET penalty save. All specualtion of course.

If I was to have a sneaky bet on a dark horse I'd stick 20 Euros on Russia. Arshavin was excellent the other night ( why did he not do that at Arsenal??! ) and with Dzagoev in the attack they have a real quality to them. Pavlyuchenko was good too and like Arshavin also plays better for Russia then his club. They played some great footie against the Czechs and I can see them making the semis with Advocat at the helm who has been there,seen it,done it in football.

As for Holland! Didn't see that happening. I had Van Persie down for the golden boot but he was woefull. To be fair though they should of had a penalty near the end but such is life.

Anyway looking forward to a great tournament of the world's greatest game.
06-10-2012 03:27 AM
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Blunt Offline
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Post: #8
RE: Euro 2012
(06-08-2012 09:49 PM)freshcream Wrote:  Hopefully racism won't ruin the event...

There's a separate thread in the travel forum for that.
06-10-2012 04:36 AM
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kingjuice Offline
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RE: Euro 2012
Where can I watch the games online?
06-10-2012 05:37 AM
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Lumiere Offline
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RE: Euro 2012
(06-10-2012 05:37 AM)kingjuice Wrote:  Where can I watch the games online?

http://www.footballstreaming.info/streams/todays-links/
06-10-2012 06:39 AM
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billy Offline
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RE: Euro 2012
I fancy Russia to make the semis but really hard to see what team can beat Spain, if any I guess Germany could grind out a result against them. The current England team is the worst I can remember but the best on paper England teams of the last few decades have played crap on the big stage. Perhaps this crap side will win a few games, with Stevie G in the side anything is possible. I feel sorry for any black or asian fans who have to put up with being in Donesk though, watched some recent footage where two guys supporting the home team were set on by half the crowd as they were the wrong colour.
06-10-2012 06:47 AM
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billy Offline
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RE: Euro 2012
06-10-2012 06:49 AM
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Sentrix Offline
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RE: Euro 2012
Italy played well against Spain, I thought. The Italian attack and acceleration died down at the end, but they were arguably the better team in the first half, and didn't seem bothered at the start of the second. No question though that Spain dominated the end of the game.

Going to be an interesting group... Ireland and Croatia currently playing now and tied 1-1.
06-10-2012 02:28 PM
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rudebwoy Away
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RE: Euro 2012
Croatia beat Ireland, so that makes that group very interesting.

Italy or Spain will not qualify now, Balotelli might regret that scoring chance he had in the game. I actually thought it was a good game, but what is with Spain going with no strikers?

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06-10-2012 07:12 PM
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RE: Euro 2012
Another good spot to watch sports is wiziwig.tv; they have every sport in the same formats as the aforementioned site by Lumiere.

The Spain strikerless formation is very similar to a formation that Barcelona have used this past season with Fabregas as the main-man up front; the three forwardmost midfielders rotate who goes up front and that opens space up between the opponents midfielders and defenders. Spain and Italy can both progress if they each beat ROI and Croatia or one ties against Croatia w/ a good goal differential against ROI.It is very possible that ROI will have 0 points out of the group-stage.

I like Germany and Italy because they are they two most solid teams from front to back, the other squads all seem to have some questionable midfields/defenses.Spain has awesome midfield/forwards, but their defense is not as good as they appear statistically because their players benefit from playing on teams that have absurd possession. I would pick Germany to win because they are younger and will be less fatigued at the end of the tourney.
(This post was last modified: 06-10-2012 07:44 PM by jmoney29.)
06-10-2012 07:40 PM
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RE: Euro 2012
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(This post was last modified: 02-09-2016 01:38 PM by NuMbEr7.)
06-11-2012 12:45 PM
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RE: Euro 2012
I think Spain, Germany, Russia, and Italy have the strongest chances (in this order).

The bookies have slightly different assessments.
06-11-2012 01:22 PM
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The Fantasist Away
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RE: Euro 2012
England 1 -1 France

A cagey opening game but a good result for both sides probably. On paper France are a far superior side but failed to create too much in the game to trouble the English defence. The French front three showed some real class at times but I thought the England full backs shackled Ribery and Nasri reasonably well although I saw Ashley Cole get skinned for the first time in years on a couple of occasions. Milner should have at least hit the target after rounding the keeper but he showed just why he can't get into the Man city side. The French were reduced to speculative shots from the edge of the area and it took a cracking strike from Nasri to score. England played like all of Hodgson's teams have down the years i.e somewhat rigid in formation but well ordered with each man knowing his job. 'Total Football' it is not. Anyway I think both teams will go on to qualify from here,France certainly will anyway.
06-11-2012 02:44 PM
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Vicious Offline
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Post: #19
RE: Euro 2012
The Swe match was painful to Watch. Embarassing (lack of) performance. I predict a quick first round exit
06-11-2012 04:24 PM
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Spike Offline
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RE: Euro 2012
(06-10-2012 01:08 AM)El Rey Wrote:  Was anyone really surprised by Netherlands shitting the bed?? Van Persie hasn't done shit on the national squad for a while now, and Robben creates, creates, and creates, but he doesnt't finish a damn thing. The inexperienced defense was going to do them in anyway.

As a Dutch guy i'm ashamed to say you are right. It was a shit performance and unless they beat Germany on Wednesday they're out of the championship.

I'm just glad no one says soccer in this thread. The word is an abomination.

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06-11-2012 06:16 PM
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Vacancier Permanent Offline
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RE: Euro 2012
Some random thoughts on the past 2 days games:

Spain-Italy: I thought Spain played well but was surprised to Del Bosque go without a striker up front and that showed. He should have played Llorente as he is right now the only real viable option Spain have up front since Torres is unfortunately a pale shadow of his old self. The chances he missed were horrendous. Any half decent striker would have scored at least one of those 3 glorious chances he burnt. Italy played good, showing how strong they are at the back yet lacking up front they are.

Croatia played well against a weak Irish team who will have a hard time picking a point in this group. Croatia Italy will decide the team that finishes 2nd in this group behind the Spaniards who are head and shoulders the class of this group.

Today, France showed why they are on a 22 games without losing streak. We finally after 6 long years have a decent team again that we can be proud of. They play good football, are great to watch up front, specially the 3 up front Ribery, Benzema and Nasri. However at the back, there is still a lot of open space left between the midfield and the defence which can be deadly against a top team like Germany, Spain or Holland. I'm very nervous each time I see Mexes going for a challenge as he is very prone to committing stupid fouls at times and or picking yellows or worst, a red or causing a penalty. I was very impressed by Cabaye he was everywhere. I want to see more of Ben Harfa, this guy is mad talented.

At times, the game reminded of the recent Barcelona-Chelsea where Barca were controlling the possession and attacking most of the time while Chelsea had basically parked their bus in front of their goal and in their box. England played really Chelsea like and I was dissapointed by their defensive approach. England didn't do much, their only chances coming from set pieces. On the England goal, Lloris got unlucky as the ball passed between his hands and his tummy. All in all, I was pleased with how France played and felt that we should have won that game with a little bit more daring from Blanc by bringing Ben Harfa earlier and by having a little bit more killer instinct up front.

England didn't show much and if I were an Englishman or an English fan, I'd be worried in light of what they showed tonight. It's not going to be easy to beat Sweden and specially Ukraine galvanized by their home advantage and their ace wearing #7 a certain Andrij Shevchenko, aka Sheva...

Sweden-Ukraine. Was thoroughly dissapointed with Sweden style of play, which reminded me of the old obsolete "kick and rush" a la Irish. Long balls up front for Zlatan and hope that the Giant Swede does his magic. I have never been a fan of his, not even as he has been playing for my team for the past 2 seasons in Milan. He has constantly failed to deliver in the big games. However, I was DELIGHTED to see Sheva show his killer instinct and score those 2 beautiful goals. Even at 35, Sheva is still 10 times the player than Zlatan can ever dream of being. Sheva has always delivered in the big games and he still got it. And that's why he will be remembered as the most deadly and complete striker of his generation. Grazie Vento di Passione!!!!Heart
(This post was last modified: 06-11-2012 10:35 PM by Vacancier Permanent.)
06-11-2012 10:35 PM
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The Fantasist Away
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RE: Euro 2012
(06-11-2012 10:35 PM)Vacancier Permanent Wrote:  However, I was DELIGHTED to see Sheva show his killer instinct and score those 2 beautiful goals.

Highlight of the tournament so far,was so happy for him,one of the true greats of the game.
06-12-2012 01:27 AM
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Vicious Offline
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RE: Euro 2012
(06-11-2012 10:35 PM)Vacancier Permanent Wrote:  Sweden-Ukraine. Was thoroughly dissapointed with Sweden style of play, which reminded me of the old obsolete "kick and rush" a la Irish. Long balls up front for Zlatan and hope that the Giant Swede does his magic. I have never been a fan of his, not even as he has been playing for my team for the past 2 seasons in Milan. He has constantly failed to deliver in the big games. H

I completely agree with you regarding Sweden's miserable play but I think you're way off regarding Zlatan in Milan. Where would his team be without him? He had little support on the field the this season. Cassano and Robinhos numbers are down. Pato, remember that guy - 1 goal all season. The only one actually supporting Ibra is Nocerino.

No, Zlatan is suffering from the same issues in the Swedish national team as in Milan. Lack of depth. To blame him for the team's performance in major games is misdirected.
06-12-2012 04:01 AM
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The Fantasist Away
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RE: Euro 2012
Regarding Zlatan: This was the first season in ten years that he did not win the league title with his club,that is a mind boggling statistic which proves to me that the guy is sheer class. My only issue with him is that he rarely performs well in the big champions league games or for Sweden. Yesterday I thought he did ok,the guy is immensely strong and for a bg guy his touch was fantastic. He reminds of Berbatov with his laconic style but with twice the skill. I think the loss against Ukraine has sealed Sweden's fate though,they had to win that game to go through. Ukraine on the other hand can afford to lose against France knowing a win against England will probably be enough to go through.

So far it's been a good tournament and tonight is going go be immense,possibly for the wrong reasons:

Poland v Russia expect fireworks for this one.

Germany v Holland two countries who hate each other.

Can't wait!
06-12-2012 05:18 AM
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Vacancier Permanent Offline
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RE: Euro 2012
What I meant with my comments about Zlatan, yes he's a very talented player, great physical strength and can decide a match on his own and yes this season ironically despite not winning the title in 10 years, has been hsi best season in terms of goals scored (he had 30 or 31 for Milan this season. I totally agree with you that without him this year, we wouldn't have been in the top 3 and he has been huge at times. Problem is he is unstoppable only against the smaller teams. However, my major beef with him is that in the big games when he is really needed like in the Champions League against Barcelona for example this season or in the big games in the Serie A against Rubentus or Sfinter, he was totally absent. He is rightfully considered one of the top 10 players in the world and the main reason I am not a fan of his is due to that fact that he doesn't do jack when you would expect something from him in the big games as you would from such a top player. That is why a guy like Sheva will be worshipped in Milan for ever as he ALWAYS delivered in the big matches or in the finals.

Don't get me started on this year's Milan team which has been abysimal and a shadow of the great Milan teams of just a few years ago. All Berlusconi's fault for being too stingy and cheap with his money. Can't wait till he sells the club to some Arab billionaires...

(06-12-2012 04:01 AM)Vicious Wrote:  
(06-11-2012 10:35 PM)Vacancier Permanent Wrote:  Sweden-Ukraine. Was thoroughly dissapointed with Sweden style of play, which reminded me of the old obsolete "kick and rush" a la Irish. Long balls up front for Zlatan and hope that the Giant Swede does his magic. I have never been a fan of his, not even as he has been playing for my team for the past 2 seasons in Milan. He has constantly failed to deliver in the big games. H

I completely agree with you regarding Sweden's miserable play but I think you're way off regarding Zlatan in Milan. Where would his team be without him? He had little support on the field the this season. Cassano and Robinhos numbers are down. Pato, remember that guy - 1 goal all season. The only one actually supporting Ibra is Nocerino.

No, Zlatan is suffering from the same issues in the Swedish national team as in Milan. Lack of depth. To blame him for the team's performance in major games is misdirected.
06-12-2012 06:33 AM
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