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    SCOTLAND just beat France 1 - 0 WOOOOOOOOOOT

    :beer: :beer: :beer: :beer: :beer:

    Keeping the Rams Nation Talking

  • #2

    Scotland 1-0 France

    Scotland skipper Barry Ferguson battles for possession

    Scotland sit proudly at the top of Euro 2008 qualifying Group B after a fabulous win over France at Hampden.
    Thierry Henry hit the post as France dominated the first 45 minutes but Scotland improved after the interval.
    And Gary Caldwell, who was outstanding in defence, turned goal hero when he stabbed the ball home from a Paul Hartley corner kick on 67 minutes.
    France enjoyed the bulk of possession but Walter Smith's well-organised team worked hard for a famous victory.
    James McFadden was given the role of lone striker and he gave the French a fright inside the first few minutes.
    The Everton forward robbed Lilian Thuram as the Barcelona defender tried to usher the ball out of play but his attempted cross was blocked and his follow-up shot struck team-mate Hartley.
    But the visitors soon began to dictate play and went very close with a curling Henry free-kick that struck the post.
    Patrick Vierra headed in from a Franck Ribery free-kick after 17 minutes but the France captain had strayed marginally offside.
    The linesman's flag came to the rescue again, when David Trezeguet's overhead kick found the net, and Florent Malouda blazed a shot high and wide as France continued to press. Craig Gordon then made a fine diving save to keep out a stinging Malouda strike from distance.
    Scotland earned a corner after a rare surge forward on 37 minutes but goalkeeper Gregory Coupet gathered Gary Caldwell's header comfortably.
    McFadden stole in behind the French defence early in the second-half to meet Darren Fletcher's well-placed pass but wildly slashed at his shot from a tight angle and failed to test Coupet.
    France lost the passing fluency that had seen them dominate the first-half but Scotland continued to lose possession cheaply and put themselves under pressure.
    However, Scotland were getting forward more often and their endeavour was rewarded with a goal on 67 minutes.
    Hartley swung in a corner from the right and, with the French defence static, Caldwell threw himself at the ball to slide in a shot from eight yards. France poured forward in the closing stages but the Scots packed men behind the ball and tackled with tenacity. Henry had a fantastic chance to level the game with three minutes remaining but tamely headed straight at Gordon from close range and Scotland held on to make it three wins from three in the race for Euro 2008.

    Keeping the Rams Nation Talking


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    • RamDez
      Celts stroll in Jinky final
      by RamDez
      Celts stroll in Jinky final Stephen Sullivan

      CIS Insurance Cup Final,
      Sunday March 19, 2006
      Hampden Park

      CELTIC… 3
      Zurawski 43, Maloney 76, Dublin 90

      Jimmy Johnstone was honoured on the Hampden turf this afternoon, ultimately in some style, as Celtic adhered firmly to the pre-match script by returning the League Cup to Jinky’s spiritual home.

      Goals from Maciej Zurawski, Shaun Maloney and Dion Dublin saw Celtic stroll to the first silverware of Gordon Strachan’s reign and, with each of these strikes and the very lifting of the trophy greeted by chants of ‘Jimmy Johnstone on the wing,’ it truly was an afternoon to remember.

      A minute’s applause – universally and enthusiastically observed – certainly set a fitting tone and, with the Celtic support continuing to sing the praises of their late hero, Strachan’s side immediately set about giving the faithful something to cheer rather than merely applaud.

      First to threaten was Zurawski - a sound-looking bet in the first goalscorer stakes – who, in just eight minutes, rose under pressure at the near post to head against the face of the crossbar from an inswinging Shunsuke Nakamura free-kick.

      Much was expected of Nakamura and Maloney, Celtic’s two modern day widemen and, though only Maloney - and he only in patches - gave a performance to evoke memories of Jinky, both were prominent in their side’s impressive early play.

      So, too, was Ross Wallace – restored to left-back in place of the cup-tied Mark Wilson – with the youngster, for all his apparent defensive shortcomings, again offering the kind of attacking spark that justified his inclusion.

      In 13 minutes, he drove at Dunfermline all on his own, taking off on a surging run that saw him burst from his own half to the Pars penalty box, where he smashed in a low shot that would surely have found the net had it been a foot either side of Allan McGregor.

      It was Wallace who also created Celtic’s next chance, drilling a long ball over the top for Keane, who in fouling Allan McGregor in a 30-70 challenge for the ball, only saved the former Rangers keeper from committing an infringement of his own as he was on the way out of his box with the ball in his hands.

      Yet, by this stage, Celtic’s early promise had faded and, with Stilian Petrov again looking ill at ease in a striking role alongside Zurawski, Dunfermline were sufficiently encouraged to mount a few attacks of their own, the best of which saw Freddy Dacquin slice wastefully into the side-netting.

      Celtic, though, always looked the more likely to break the deadlock and, with six first-half minutes remaining, only a superb, agile tip-over from McGregor prevented Keane from charging in on a Nakamura free-kick and bulleting the Bhoys in front.

      Dunfermline's stay of execution was short, however...
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    • RamDez
      Celts sparkle in league opener
      by RamDez

      Gregor Kyle

      Scottish Premierleague
      Saturday, July 29 2006
      Celtic Park, Glasgow

      CELTIC… 4
      (Zurawski 25, 90, Jarosik 38, Nakamura 75)
      (Naismith 88)

      CELTIC raised the curtain on the 2006/07 season with a sparkling four-goal show against Kilmarnock at Celtic Park on Saturday.

      Goals from Jiri Jarosik, Shunsuke Nakamura and a double from Maciej Zurawski capped an outstanding performance from Gordon Strachan’s champions, one that was perhaps unexpected by those who have followed their fortunes in recent pre-season games.

      The day kicked-off with Brian Quinn and club captain Neil Lennon, who was suspended for today’s match, unfurling the league flag with the Celtic Chairman serving what proved to be a timely reminder about the realities of pre-season football.

      Last year had similarly uninspiring beginnings for Celtic and eventually resulted in a league and League Cup double.

      And during the course of the ensuing 90 minutes, Gordon Strachan’s men went a long way toward silencing some of the doubters.

      Several questions have been raised about the depth and overall quality of the manager’s squad, but in this match there was plenty of promise with the partnership of Maciej Zurawski and Kenny Miller looking particularly healthy.

      Throughout the opening 45 minutes their industry and energy was simply too much for a Kilmarnock back four who were dragged from pillar to post in pursuit of the elusive frontmen.

      Miller in particular enjoyed a number of good chances, most notably a free shot at the back post which was turned wide of the target and both men were to prove central players in Celtic’s two first half goals.

      As a whole, the Celtic team looked like a far more composed and better organised outfit and in defence, the partnership of Stephen McManus and Gary Caldwell was unflappable.

      The considerable threat provided by Kilmarnock’s Steven Naismith on the left wing was effectively negated by Mark Wilson who, having been moved to his natural right-back position following an injury to Paul Telfer, was a model of consistency.

      The one opening that Naismith did enjoy in the first half was provided by Caldwell who, in attempt to walk the ball out of defence, lost possession some ten yards from the halfway line and left the winger with a clear break at goal.

      But the big defender had Artur Boruc to thank for saving his blushes, with the Polish shot-stopper blocking the first attempt and then scrambling across his goal to deny Naismith a second. Then five minutes later Celtic took the lead through Zurawski.

      The move was sparked by the running of Miller who broke down the left wing and, spotting the goalbound run of his partner, lifted a well-placed pass across the edge of the box and into his path.

      Breaking into...
      -07-29-2006, 09:27 AM
    • RamDez
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      -08-14-2005, 03:35 PM
    • txramsfan
      Poplar Bluff takes care of Lafayette 71-56
      by txramsfan

      By JEFF McNIELL ~ Assistant Sports Editor
      ST. LOUIS -- All of the sudden, cold-shooting Poplar Bluff seemingly can't miss from the outside.

      "I could even pitch it out to (junior varsity player) Kevin Hutson sitting on the bench and he'll hit one," senior forward Tyler Hansbrough joked.

      Hutson is one of the few Mules not knocking down long shots these days.

      Second-ranked Poplar Bluff got 3-pointers from five different players - and eight in all for the second straight game - to knock off No. 7 Lafayette 71-56 in front of a capacity crowd Saturday afternoon.

      "It shows you how we can play," Hansbrough said. "If we can come in here in front of their home crowd, it really shows us how good we can be."

      The Mules (6-2) went to the perimeter to complete a two-day sweep of two of the state's top-ranked teams. Less than 24 hours after hitting eight 3s in a 30-point blowout of Dexter, ranked fourth in Class 4, Poplar Bluff was 8-for-14 from downtown against the Lancers.

      Reserves Allan Spencer and James Dixon combined for five 3s to help loosen the inside for Hansbrough, who led the way with 27 points and eight rebounds.

      "It's real noticeable that our guards are starting to play better," Poplar Bluff coach John David Pattillo said. "Our guys are coming in off the bench and playing well, and we need that."

      A rematch of last year's Class 5 state semifinal - which the Mules also won - was even most of the way. There were 10 lead changes, two ties and despite falling behind by nine midway through the second quarter, Lafayette (6-2) rallied to retake the lead midway through the third.

      That's when the defending state champions took control.

      With Poplar Bluff trailing 41-40, Spencer canned a 3-pointer from the right wing to spark a 15-2 run that carried over into the opening minutes of the fourth quarter. Spencer had a jumper and transition layin sandwiched by a monster Hansbrough slam as the Mules went ahead 55-43 with 6:32 left.

      Hansbrough, whose putback dunk at the end of the second quarter was waved off by the officials, scowled at the crowd after taking flight and throwing down a hard one-handed fastbreak dunk.

      "I was feeling bad because that's the only one I had, so I felt like I would just crush it and break the whole thing," Hansbrough said. "I wanted to bring the roof down with it."

      Ben Hansbrough went 12-for-15 at the free-throw line en route to 17 points for the Mules, who were 11-for-16 (68.8 percent) from the field in the second half. Spencer scored 12 points and Dixon hit three 3-pointers for nine points.

      Austin Peay recruit Landon Shipley scored a game-high 28 points for the...
      -12-20-2004, 02:37 PM
    • DJRamFan
      Turnovers Bite Huskies at Michigan
      by DJRamFan
      No. 4 Michigan 33, Northern Illinois 17

      Sept. 3, 2005

      ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) - Michigan made Northern Illinois pay for its mistakes, using turnovers to turn a competitive game into a lopsided win.

      Mike Hart ran for 117 yards and a scored two touchdowns, and the fourth-ranked Wolverines took advantage of five Northern Illinois giveaways to beat the Huskies 33-17 on Saturday.

      A season after leading the nation by losing only one fumble, the Huskies lost four fumbles and threw an interception while the Wolverines turned it over only once.

      "If you win the turnover battle, statistics say you win 79 percent of the time," Michigan coach Lloyd Carr said. "If the turnovers were 1-1, the score would've been much different."

      The Wolverines led just 14-10 early in the second quarter before scoring 19 straight points in the opener for both schools.

      The Huskies ran for 211 yards and threw for 200, but they were doomed by the turnovers and a blocked field goal.

      "I honestly thought we had a shot if we didn't turn it over," said coach Joe Novak, who has built Northern Illinois into a mid-major power after it lost 23 straight from 1996-98.

      Michigan's Chad Henne was 20-of-31 for 227 yards and two TD passes. Jason Avant had nine receptions for 127 yards and a score. Hart had 27 carries and ran for more than 100 yards for the sixth time in his last eight games. He also caught four passes for 49 yards.

      The Wolverines scored TDs on their first three drives, missed a field goal on their fourth and led 27-10 at halftime after converting 8 of 10 third downs.

      "Offensively, we played as well in the first half as any team since I've been at Michigan," said Carr, in his 11th year as head coach.

      Adrian Arrington, Michigan's promising No. 3 receiver, was carted off the field with ice packed on his right ankle after he returned a kickoff early in the second quarter. Carr said he's going to miss some time, but didn't elaborate.

      Garrett Wolfe had 17 carries for 148 yards and a TD for the Huskies, but his fumble in the second quarter was the first of their turnovers.

      "With my fumble, everything started to turn around," he said. "The game started to go downhill for us."

      Phil Horvath was 17-of-25 for 200 yards with an interception and a fumble.

      Northern Illinois had some success against the Wolverines' high-powered offense, but not when it counted most on third downs.

      Michigan opened with a 14-play drive - converting four third downs - ending with Avant's leaping 4-yard catch in the corner of the end zone.

      The Huskies responded with a 16-play possession, but they missed their first of many opportunities...
      -09-05-2005, 09:21 AM