Euro 2016 daily five: Importance of Cristiano Ronaldo; who needs to find form?

Friday, Day 15, was another day off for the teams at Euro 2016, but ahead of Saturday's knockout matches we have collated some of the best of our content from the last 24 hours in one place. All the latests news, plus group guides, kick-off times and news from around the teams can be found at our special microsite.

1 – World class and crucial

Ian Hawkey runs down the three teams in particular at Euro 2016 who could be most considered a one-man show: Portugal, Wales and Poland.

They feature three of the very best players in the world, easily three of the top 10, in Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Robert Lewandowski, respectively. And, Hawkey writes, with their towering talent comes a towering importance:

“Portugal, Poland and Wales, each of who seek a place in the quarter-finals on Saturday, arrived at this expanded European championships with a couple of things in common. They were not among the top favourites to win, but they were noted as dangerous outsiders for one reason above all: They had an individual who on his day, can swing a contest against anybody.

“They each have a gold-standard, world-class star, and they have just the one. That man plays for a club where he is surrounded, most weeks, by 10 footballers who, man for man, would in an ideal XI displace the 10 teammates with whom he lines up for his country.”

2 – Stars who need to step up

Jonathan Raymond looks at some of the biggest names who have had some of the quietest tournaments so far at Euro 2016.

No 1 on his list? Belgium’s Kevin De Bruyne:

“Like Poland, Belgium are blessed with the pleasant side of the draw, and get a scrappy but severely less-talented Hungary to start, with Wales and Northern Ireland on the horizon offering a manageable path at least to the semi-finals. Unlike some of his under-pressure peers, De Bruyne’s team are good enough to navigate that without him hitting his stride just yet, but it would be nice to see some magic out of the kid before long.”

3 – Real Madrid stars prepare for battle

Portugal v Croatia figures to be an affair for madridistas, with Cristiano Ronalado and Pepe lined up on one side, and Luka Modric and Mateo Kovacic lined up on the other. There is even a Barcelona party-crasher in Ivan Rakitic.

See how this collection of La Liga stars looked in training ahead of the last 16 contest in our photo gallery.

4 – ‘Sometimes you’re the dog, sometimes you’re the tree’

Who gave us that, ehm, descriptive line? Find out in our rundown of the best quotes of Euro 2016 so far.

Also among the highlights is Iceland coach Heimir Hallgrimsson after his side secured passage to the last 16:

“I would guess we will change the national holiday. It’s normally on June 17, but they will probably change it now.”

5 – Are Germany still world-beaters?

It's a fair question to ask, given their slump in form following a 2014 World Cup triumph and an unconvincing qualifying campaign and group stage.

Just don’t go bothering Joachim Low with it:

“In 2014, we already had the same discussion. Then we won the World Cup and suddenly everyone was an awesome leader.

“In all honesty, it’s all been said before.”

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Company name: Klipit

Started: 2022

Founders: Venkat Reddy, Mohammed Al Bulooki, Bilal Merchant, Asif Ahmed, Ovais Merchant

Based: Dubai, UAE

Industry: Digital receipts, finance, blockchain

Funding: $4 million

Investors: Privately/self-funded


Pakistan: Sarfraz Ahmed (captain), Mohammad Hafeez, Sahibzada Farhan, Babar Azam, Shoaib Malik, Asif Ali, Shadab Khan, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Usman Khan Shanwari, Hasan Ali, Imad Wasim, Faheem Ashraf.

New Zealand: Kane Williamson (captain), Corey Anderson, Mark Chapman, Lockie Ferguson, Colin de Grandhomme, Adam Milne, Colin Munro, Ajaz Patel, Glenn Phillips, Seth Rance, Tim Seifert, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor.


Company name: Revibe
Started: 2022
Founders: Hamza Iraqui and Abdessamad Ben Zakour
Based: UAE
Industry: Refurbished electronics
Funds raised so far: $10m
Investors: Flat6Labs, Resonance and various others

Company Profile

Company name: Cargoz
Date started: January 2022
Founders: Premlal Pullisserry and Lijo Antony
Based: Dubai
Number of staff: 30
Investment stage: Seed

Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom

Director: James Wan

Starring: Jason Mamoa, Patrick Wilson, Amber Heard, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II 

Rating: 2/5

Representing UAE overseas

If Catherine Richards debuts for Wales in the Six Nations, she will be the latest to have made it from the UAE to the top tier of the international game in the oval ball codes.

Seren Gough-Walters (Wales rugby league)
Born in Dubai, raised in Sharjah, and once an immigration officer at the British Embassy in Abu Dhabi, she debuted for Wales in rugby league in 2021.

Sophie Shams (England sevens)
With an Emirati father and English mother, Shams excelled at rugby at school in Dubai, and went on to represent England on the sevens circuit.

Fiona Reidy (Ireland)
Made her Test rugby bow for Ireland against England in 2015, having played for four years in the capital with Abu Dhabi Harlequins previously.


Company: Vault
Started: June 2023
Co-founders: Bilal Abou-Diab and Sami Abdul Hadi
Based: Abu Dhabi
Licensed by: Abu Dhabi Global Market
Industry: Investment and wealth advisory
Funding: $1 million
Investors: Outliers VC and angel investors
Number of employees: 14


Director: Nikhil Nagesh Bhat

Starring: Lakshya, Tanya Maniktala, Ashish Vidyarthi, Harsh Chhaya, Raghav Juyal

Rating: 4.5/5


5pm: Wathba Stallions Cup – Handicap (PA) Dh70,000 (Turf) 2,200m
5.30pm: Rub Al Khali – Maiden (PA) Dh80,000 (T) 1,400m
6pm: Al Marmoom Desert – Maiden (PA) Dh80,000 (T) 1,600m
6.30pm: Liwa Oasis – Handicap (PA) Dh80,000 (T) 1,400m
7pm: Al Khatim Desert – Handicap (PA) Dh80,000 (T) 1,600m
7.30pm: Al Quadra Desert – Handicap (TB) Dh80,000 (T) 1,600m


Company: Olive Gaea
Started: 2021
Co-founders: Vivek Tripathi, Jessica Scopacasa
Based: Dubai
Licensed by: Dubai World Trade Centre
Industry: Climate-Tech, Sustainability
Funding: $1.1 million
Investors: Cornerstone Venture Partners and angel investors
Number of employees: 8


Manchester United 2 Tottenham Hotspur 1
Man United: Sanchez (24' ), Herrera (62')
Spurs: Alli (11')

Top 5 concerns globally:

1. Unemployment

2. Spread of infectious diseases

3. Fiscal crises

4. Cyber attacks

5. Profound social instability

Top 5 concerns in the Mena region

1. Energy price shock

2. Fiscal crises

3. Spread of infectious diseases

4. Unmanageable inflation

5. Cyber attacks

Source: World Economic Foundation

Voy! Voy! Voy!

Director: Omar Hilal
Stars: Muhammad Farrag, Bayoumi Fouad, Nelly Karim
Rating: 4/5

UAE rugby season


West Asia Premiership

Dubai Hurricanes v Dubai Knights Eagles

Dubai Tigers v Bahrain

Jebel Ali Dragons v Abu Dhabi Harlequins

UAE Division 1

Dubai Sharks v Dubai Hurricanes II

Al Ain Amblers v Dubai Knights Eagles II

Dubai Tigers II v Abu Dhabi Saracens

Jebel Ali Dragons II v Abu Dhabi Harlequins II

Sharjah Wanderers v Dubai Exiles II



West Asia Premiership

Winners – Bahrain

Runners-up – Dubai Exiles

UAE Premiership

Winners – Abu Dhabi Harlequins

Runners-up – Jebel Ali Dragons

Dubai Rugby Sevens

Winners – Dubai Hurricanes

Runners-up – Abu Dhabi Harlequins

UAE Conference

Winners – Dubai Tigers

Runners-up – Al Ain Amblers

Sly Cooper and the Thievius Raccoonus

Developer: Sucker Punch Productions
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Console: PlayStation 2 to 5
Rating: 5/5


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