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Monday, June 4, 2012
'FIFA 12' simulation: Euro 2012

By Zach McCann

Andriy Shevchenko
One of the appeals of the UEFA Euro tournament is its unpredictability -- there has been a different winner in each Euro tournament since 1988, as Europe's best 16 teams beat up on each other every four years.

The "FIFA 12" prediction, however, may provide a pretty good idea of what will happen in Euro 2012, which starts Friday. Those "FIFA" computers correctly predicted Spain would win the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, and they nailed Chelsea's 2-1 win over Liverpool in the FA Cup final last month.

So what does "FIFA" and its "Euro 2012" expansion pack -- which is available to download -- tell us about this year's tourney? EA Sports put the same groupings of teams into the same conditions they'll face this month in Poland and Ukraine and ran the simulations, from group play to the championship match.

Below are the results.

QUARTERFINALS
* Netherlands d. Russia 2-0. Goal scorers: van Persie, Huntelaar.
* Spain d. England 2-2 (4-3). Goal scorers: Rooney, Lampard; Llorente, Pique.
* Germany d. Poland 3-1. Goal scorers: Gomez, Gomez, Schweinsteiger; Lewandowski.
* Italy d. France 2-1. Goal scorers: Pirlo, Balotelli; Benzema.

SEMIFINALS
* Netherlands d. Spain 3-1. Goal scorers: Robben, van Persie, Huntelaar; Silva.
* Germany d. Italy 1-0. Goal scorer: Klose.

FIFA 13
Germany defeated the Netherlands 2-1 to capture the EURO title in a "FIFA" simulation.
FINAL
Netherlands jumped to a 1-0 lead in the 24th minute when Robin van Persie struck home a left-footed rocket from just outside the box. The lead didn’t last long, though, as Germany’s Mesut Ozil evened the score 12 minutes later. The teams remained tied 1-1 until the 78th minute, when Mario Gomez went high between two Dutch defenders to head in the winning goal on a corner kick from Bastian Schweinsteiger, delivering Germany its fourth Euro championship.