herald

Monday 11 December 2017

Cartoon royalty get behind hosts Poland

POLAND have some pretty famous fans backing them here at Euro 2012, with legendary ex-footballers (Zbigniew Boniek), Nobel Prize winners (Lech Walesa) and, er, Karolina Szostak (a popular local TV presenter, check her out on the web to see just how popular she is).

But a new fan of the co-hosts has also popped up to support the boys in red and white. King Julian, from Madagascar, has emerged on billboards all over the country, holding up a red and white scarf which says "Go Poland" to promote the latest Madagascar film.

If you don't know who King Julian is, just ask anyone under the age of ten. We don't yet know who Marty and Melman are supporting but we'll try to find out.

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IT'S been a while since Ireland beat Croatia in a competitive game at any level but there is one man who will be involved on Sunday night who had a part in that game.

Brian Kerr's U19 side had St Coleman's Park in Cobh rocking when the Irish boys beat Croatia 3-1 in a qualifier for the Euro finals back in November 2001.

Striker Jonathan Daly (now with Dundee United) scored twice for Ireland while Reinier Moor (last heard of playing for English non-league side Clevedon Town) scored the other.

Niko Kranjcar (pictured) played for Croatia that day and he's the only player from that U19 game who is in the squads for Euro 2012.

The Ireland team was Brian Murphy (Manchester City); Stephen Brennan (Newcastle), Sean Dillon (Aston Villa), Stephen Paisley (Manchester City), Paddy McCarthy (Manchester City), Graham Ward (Wolves), Liam Kearney (Nottm Forest), Michael Foley (Liverpool), Sean Thornton (Tranmere), Jonathan Daly (Stockport), Adrian Deane (Charlton). SUB: Reinier Moor (Exeter).

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Poland wants to make things as easy as possible for Euro 2012 visitors and fans here can now even call the cops in their own language. They don't use 999 as the emergency number here, instead opting for 112, but for the duration of the Euros, the local authorities have deployed specially-trained staff at the emergency number's call centre who can deal with queries in English and Italian.

You can of course run into the local police in person. They don't like jaywalking over here and yesterday the Evening Herald was pulled over by a police car in central Gdynia after we had the temerity to walk across the road without the permission of the green man.

Pleading ignorance as a dumb foreigner we were let off the hook without a fine but Irish fans heading to Poland in the next day or so should watch where they walk.

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