Poland captain Jakub Blaszczykowski issued a rallying cry ahead of the co-hosts’ Euro 2012 opener against Greece on Friday, calling on his team mates to stand up and be counted in front of a 60,000 home crowd.
“We are up to this task. For sure one thing that will not be lacking in us is determination and will for the fight,” Blaszczykowski told a news conference at the new national stadium on Thursday.
“We can talk about all sorts of things today, but tomorrow we have to go out and show what we have in our shorts.”
Speaking in a quiet and determined tone, the Borussia Dortmund winger thanked media and the coaching team for two and a half years work that he said had produced a team that would now bear fruit.
He promised that the side would “give everything” to improve on poor Polish performances at the last European Championship in Austria and Switzerland in 2008 and 2006 World Cup in Germany.
“We can say with no doubt that this is the game of our lives,” he said.
Coach Franciszek Smuda told the conference his team, which is undefeated in six games but has not played competitively in more than two years, was capable of reaching the tournament’s quarter-finals.
“We say that this is a team for the 21st century, it plays excellent football. A team with a future has been born, and for sure we can look to a future of good results and good play.”