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2004 team of the tournament

Published: Saturday 1 January 2011, 11.00CET
Greece, Portugal and the the Czech Republic contributed three players apiece to the UEFA EURO 2008 select XI spearheaded by future team-mates Wayne Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo.

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Published: Saturday 1 January 2011, 11.00CET

2004 team of the tournament

Greece, Portugal and the the Czech Republic contributed three players apiece to the UEFA EURO 2008 select XI spearheaded by future team-mates Wayne Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo.
©Getty Images

GK: Petr Čech (Czech Republic)
A revelation at his first major tournament, Čech had agreed to leave Stade Rennais FC for Chelsea FC before the finals. The 22-year-old went on to stamp his class on the Premier League, helping Chelsea win their first championship for 50 years in 2004/05, retain their crown and win the domestic double in 2009/10. A star of the Czech Republic's 2002 UEFA European U21 Championship win, Čech has since added the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Cup. All this despite a head injury in 2006 that left him requiring to wear a rugby-style head guard.

©AFP

DF: Traianos Dellas (Greece)
Little known prior to UEFA EURO 2004, the towering centre-back was the talk of the continent as Otto Rehhagel's team conceded just four goals on their way to the title. An ever-present in Portugal, Dellas gave a string of memorable performances and headed the silver goal – his only strike in 53 internationals – in the semi-final against the Czech Republic. He had spent the previous two years out of favour at AS Roma, and returned to AEK Athens FC in 2005. Injuries dulled his impact, though he won a second Greek Cup in 2011 a decade after his first.

©AFP

DF: Ricardo Carvalho (Portugal)
A newcomer to the side, Carvalho was drafted into Luiz Felipe Scolari's XI for the second group game against Russia: he never looked back, providing a string of exceptional performances. A UEFA Cup and UEFA Champions League winner with FC Porto, he followed José Mourinho to Chelsea FC for €30m after the finals and slotted in effortlessly at centre-back. He helped the Blues to successive league titles – to add to two won in his previous two seasons at Porto – and the domestic double in 2009/10, before rejoining Mourinho at Real Madrid CF.

©Getty Images

DF: Giourkas Seitaridis (Greece)
Seitaridis was an accomplished presence at right-back during Greece's march to UEFA EURO 2004 glory. He contributed to a parsimonious defence but also provided an attacking outlet: his burst earned Greece their penalty in the opener against Portugal. He marked Thierry Henry and Milan Baroš out of games and victory completed a wonderful season having won the double with Panathinaikos FC. After the tournament he joined FC Porto, and had spells at FC Dinamo Moskva and Club Atlético de Madrid before returning to Panathinaikos.

©Getty Images

DF: Gianluca Zambrotta (Italy)
Despite Italy's group stage elimination at UEFA EURO 2004, no blame could be laid at full-back Zambrotta's door and he was irresistable in the 1-1 draw with Sweden. UEFA EURO 2000 had ended sourly for Zambrotta (dismissal against the Netherlands ruling him out of the final), but redemption came six years later in Germany where, having switched from left to right-back, he played a leading role in Italy's FIFA World Cup triumph. After a successful seven-year stint with Juventus he joined AC Milan from FC Barcelona, where he won a third Scudetto.

©Getty Images

MF: Maniche (Portugal)
Maniche was the Player of the Tournament for many, showing no signs of fatigue despite being almost an ever-present as FC Porto won the Portuguese double and UEFA Champions League. He made his mark with a crucial goal versus Russia in the group stage, a do-or-die penalty in the quarter-final tie with England and a wonderful semi-final winner against the Netherlands. Maniche struggled at club level after leaving Porto in 2005 with spells at FC Dinamo Moskva, Chelsea FC, Club Atlético de Madrid, FC Internazionale Milano, FC Köln and Sporting Clube de Portugal.

©Getty Images

MF: Pavel Nedvěd (Czech Republic)
Then the reigning European Footballer of the Year, Nedvěd graced the tournament with some vintage displays before injury forced him off in the semi-final against Greece. He would emerge from international retirement to play at the 2006 FIFA World Cup and despite the Czechs' early exit, Nedvěd played brilliantly in the 2-0 defeat by Italy. The first of his 18 international goals came at EURO '96, also against the Azzurri, and Italy became his adopted home after that tournament as he left AC Sparta Praha for S.S. Lazio, winning a Scudetto. He clinched two more at Juventus but was suspended for the 2003 UEFA Champions League final.

©Getty Images

MF: Theodoros Zagorakis (Greece)
Not only did he lift the Henri Delaunay Trophy as the winning captain, Zagorakis was also voted the Player of the Tournament by UEFA. The journeyman midfielder did not score at the finals – his first for Greece did not arrive until his 101st cap against Denmark seven months later – but the future Bologna FC midfielder was Greece's most effective player in the final. Zagorakis could never have imagined during spells at FC Kavala, PAOK FC and Leicester City FC that he would reach such lofty international heights. He retired in 2007 with 120 caps: his only major club honour was a Greek Cup victory with AEK Athens FC in 2002.

©Getty Images

MF: Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal)
The 19-year-old Ronaldo came to prominence at UEFA EURO 2004, starring throughout Portugal's run to the final after scoring his first international goal in the opener. At club level the Sporting Clube de Portugal academy product helped Manchester United FC to three successive titles and the UEFA Champions League in 2008. It was a memorable year: 42 goals in 49 games saw him crowned UEFA Club Footballer of the Year and winner of the Ballon d'Or. The goals flowed even faster after his world record €92m move to Real Madrid CF and in 2014 he won the FIFA Ballon d'Or again.

©Getty Images

FW: Milan Baroš (Czech Republic)
Baroš was top scorer at UEFA EURO 2004, hitting five goals. The only match he failed to register in was the only one the Czech Republic did not win – the semi-final against Greece. It was a fabulous tournament for the striker, recently recovered from a broken leg, and more glory followed a year later as he helped Liverpool FC win the UEFA Champions League. Spells at Aston Villa FC, Olympique Lyonnais – where he won a Ligue 1 title – and Galatasaray AŞ followed. Baroš, who helped Portsmouth FC win the 2008 FA Cup, maintained an international strike-rate of a goal every other game.

©Getty Images

FW: Wayne Rooney (England)
Rooney took UEFA EURO 2004 by storm but England's tournament faltered after he limped off in their quarter-final against Portugal with a broken foot. Just 18, the forward gave man-of-the-match displays against France, Switzerland and Croatia. Rooney was out of luck again at the 2006 FIFA World Cup as he broke another metatarsal before the tournament, never recovered full fitness and was dismissed in another quarter-final against Portugal. A four-time title winner with Manchester United FC (whom he joined from Everton FC after UEFA EURO 2004), Rooney helped his side capture the 2008 UEFA Champions League.

Last updated: 07/02/14 12.59CET

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