Full-time - 90'
1 - 1
16:00 +00:00, June 8, 2012
Warsaw National Stadium, Warsaw, Poland
But in terms of the tournament, a cracking game to get us off and running. Goals, injustice, reds, yellows, penalty misses and oodles of drama. Make sure you get yourself back here for the next game - Russia v Czech Republic - in 50 minutes or so.
Greece will be haunted by Karagounis' penalty miss after Szczesny was sent off but they can be heartened by their fightback. Poland will have to work out why they capitulated in the second half, when they should have coasted to victory.
FULL TIME A point apiece and probably the right result. Poland were by far the better team in the opening half and took the lead through Robert Lewandowski, but after Greece went down to ten men it seemed to galvanise them and they fully deserved Salpingidis' equaliser.
Into the final minute of the match....
A poor delivery from the corner as Obrianak sends the ball long. Chalkias tries to flap at it but misses, lucky for him. Goal kick.
Three minutes added as a cross from the right forces Papastathopoulos to shank a clearance over his own crossbar.
An excellent game it has been but with Russia and the Czech Republic the other two in this group you feel both these teams need to push for a winner.
The stadium rises as Lewandowski is presented with the ball with only Papastathopoulos to beat but the replacement centre back does well to stand his ground and win the ball.
A terrible delivery that doesn't even manage to get the ball into the area even though Karagounis was only 40 yards from goal.
Frustration inside the stadium now as Perquis fouls Samaras. Another chance to load the box for Greece.
Lewandowski tries to turn provider to Boenisch but the ball wasn't quite in his path and he fouls Torosidis in his eagerness to get a toe to it first.
Lewandowski's latest effort is a tad ambitious, as he tries to beat Chalkias with a volley from a narrow angle on the right. Side-netting only, though some in the stadium thought for a second it was in.
ESPN's Janusz Michallik on Twitter: This collapse by Poland in the second half is inexplicable thus far. Time to turn this around or this could get worse.
Obrianak's latest cross is cleared to Polanski but his left-footed effort is weak and saved comfortably by Chalkias.
Good ball from Blaszczykowski to Obrianak but the cross for Lewandowski is overhit.
Another good shooting chance for Samaras, who looks about as potent as a week-old lettuce leaf at present. His effort flies high and wide.
Ten minutes to find a winner. I'm backing one more goal in this game.
Obrianak with a promising run into the box but he overruns the ball and then takes a tumble looking for a penalty. Nothing doing, even though the new Papastathopoulos was in close attendance.
Greece have now missed three penalty kicks in a row. They missed two in a warm up against Armenia.
A speculative effort from Torosidis after Salpingidis had found him on the right flank. A ball into the box would have been a better idea.
Lewandowski drifts out to the left to pick up the ball but he isn't going to hurt Greece from there. The Greeks clearly had a defensive refresher course during half time.
Szczesny gets a one-match ban for his red card, so he will miss the next match against Russia.
The ball is in the net but the flag is up! Salpingidis again - talk about a supersub! - but as the ball fell to Fortounis he was marginally offside.
Incredible drama at the National Stadium. Substitute goalkeeper Tyton guesses right and makes a superb save. Both sides are down to ten men and we still have 20 minutes left. How to make yourself a national hero in the blink of an eye!
TYTON SAVES! INCREDIBLE!
Goodness me, Salpingidis breaks the offside trap and takes the ball past Szczesny, who clips his heels and takes the long walk down the tunnel! What drama.
Szczesny is off and Greece have a penalty!
Another change for Greece as Gekas makes way for 19-year-old Fortounis
Decent cross from Boenisch but Rybus and nods wide at the near post.
Giorgios Karagounis has just picked up a record seventh yellow card in 8 games at the European Championships.
Torosidis goes down clutching his foot after Rybus challenged him for a cross into the box. He looks in pain. Oh, hang on, he's up again.
Better from Poland as Piszczek gets involved on the right, they work the ball inside and Polanski's shot is blocked by Karagounis.
What a good chance for Samaras as Greece continue to look the most likely; he times his run well but waits for the ball to bounce before slicing wide from a narrow angle on the half volley. Should have done better.
Rybus barges into Holebas and concedes a free kick. Poland struggling to find any attacking purchase in the second half.
Boenisch is clattered by Salpingidis from behind. This referee has an odd approach to carding.
Karagounis crosses and this time Szczesny makes the right decision to come and claim it ahead of Gekas.
Obrianak smashes a low free kick wide of the target from 30 yards. Didn't get enough swerve on the ball to coax it back towards goal.
Blaszczykowski's flick into the box is claimed by Chalkias.
The leveller has sucked some life out of the home crowd. They didn't see that one coming.
Karagounis is carded for a deliberate handball. Now that was a booking, as he tried to block a pass with his arm.
That provokes a song from the small pocket of Greek fans in the stadium. Their chorus is drowned out by boos from the home side.
That will lift the Greeks but Poland have been by far the better team and must try to wear down the ten men in blue.
Not one Szczesny will want to see again. Had he stayed put he could have mopped up easily. Goalkeeping clangers for both goals.
A shambles at the back for Poland as Szczesny tries to claim Torosidis' cross - the ball breaks loose and Salpingidis fires into the unguarded net. Blimey.
GOAL Salpingidis equalises!
John Brewin on Twitter: There is a very angry delegation of Greek journalists debating the sending off in the Gents. Ref Carballo better cancel that Corfu holiday.
First chance of the second half for Lewandowski as he gets into the area but he was falling over and scoops his shot high over the crossbar.
Greece make a change for the second-half. Sotiris Ninis is replaced by Dimitrios Salpingidis.
Ref Carlos Velasco Carballo showed 178 yellow cards and 16 red cards in 29 La Liga games last season. Average of six yellows a game.
And while you are at it, get yourself clued up on today's second game with James Dall's preview on Russia's clash with the Czech Republic.
During the break, who not peruse Robin Hackett's take on previous heroes of the European Championships.
Greece had the worst disciplinary record in qualifying with 27 yellow cards and 1 red in 10 games.
Robert Lewandowski scores the opening goal of Euro 2012
HALF TIME Well, what a lively half that was. Greece were poor and deserved to trail to Lewandowski's header but then Papastathopoulos was wrongly dismissed near the break. Plenty of talking points.
It's all kicking off now. Greece claim a penalty after the ball brushed Perquis' arm. Not a pen for me. Holebas is carded for his protest.
His first yellow was a very soft card, the second was just a joke. He can't believe it and you have to feel for him. You could argue that neither of them were even fouls let alone bookings.
Well, that is ridiculous. Papastathopoulos is shown a second yellow for a supposed block on Murawski, who was falling down anyway.
Great scrapping from Samaras as he dives into two challenges. Before that Blaszczykowski rather bottled a challenge with Papastathopoulos, who was almost the last man.
Bit better from Greece as Ninis delivers a corner then two crosses in quick succession. Poland standing firm though.
Poland coach Franciszek Smuda yesterday: "Greece are perfect in defence. It will be a great challenge to get through them." Not so far, chief.
Ninis takes towards the near post but Polanski gets there before Gekas can nod on goal. The second is punched clear by Szczesny.
They have won a corner though - their first of the encounter.
It is not going to plan for Greece so far. Porous at the back, toothless up front and already forced into a substitution.
Then from the free kick, Poland have wasted a glorious opening to make it 2-0. The ball squirts loose to Perquis, who fires wide from 14 yards out. Great chance.
One Papadopoulos for another as Greece are forced into a change. Kyriakos replacing Avraam .
Papastathopoulos is given a very harsh booking, maybe for a stray arm as he challenged for a ball in the air. He's dumbfounded.
Poor delivery again. Not up to scratch when it forms such an important part of a team's attacking portfolio.
Karagounis is not a happy bunny as he is felled by a combo of Murawski and Obrianak. Another Greek free kick.
A poor ball from Polanski as Lewandowski had pulled off his man.
All in all, a pretty bloomin' good opening half hour for the Euro 2012 co-hosts.
Greece need to show far more in an attacking sense because they look all over the Polish deli at the back.
Greece try to take it quickly but as they pulled it square the shot was blocked. The second delivery from Ninis is cleared as well.
Ninis beats Boenisch and draws a foul from behind right on the edge of the penalty area out to the right. No card when perhaps there might have been. Danger for Poland.
Murawski's free kick is cleared by Holebas but Samaras can't set up a counter.
John Brewin on Twitter: Lewandowski blows the roof off with that strike. What an atmosphere. That header may cost Sir Alex a few more quid...
A great battle between Lewandowski and Torosidis developing. Both end in a heap as Poland win a corner.
Poland have to be careful not to get carried away pushing forward though - they must not let Greece back in the game.
Katsouranis has a pop on goal from 25 yards but it doesn't trouble Szczesny.
Ninis trips Murawski after a frantic chase to close three Polish players down. "Polska, Polska," is the cry from the stands.
So, how will Greece respond? They will have to come out of their shell a little more now or they could find this game out of reach.
And the man who was credited with carrying an entire nation's hopes on his shoulders has delivered a goal within 20 minutes of the first match. Lewandowski take a bowski.
A superb cross it may have been but Chalkias went walkabout chasing it when he should have stayed put. Lewandowski was all on his own to plant his header into the corner of the net.
We're off and running and the National Stadium goes crackers! An easy header for the striker after a brilliant cross from Blaszczykowski.
A poor clearance from Papadopoulos presents Lewandowski with a chance to shoot on the turn but he skews his effort wide.
Obrianak is down after being clattered by Papastathopoulos.
A big chance for Poland as Piszczek plays a nice one-two on the right and gets into the box - he has two targets but leathers the ball across the face, meaning Lewandowski hasn't a hope of turning it home.
Greece not looking as tight defensively as we are used to, but that clean sheet is still in tact.
More neat build-up play from Poland as Lewandowski pulls wide and crosses for Blaszczykowski but he blazes over. And yes, I did spell that last name all by myself (this may not be true).
Karagounis delivers and Gekas gets a flick header on goal but Szczesny gleefully watches his effort fly four yards wide.
Gekas draws a foul from Polanski. He's a big lad to deal with. More set piece potential for Greece.
The game settling into a familiar pattern when Greece are involved. They sit deep and try to break while their opponents press.
An aimless punt from Samaras to no-one in particular. Just as I remember him from his Manchester City days.
Lewandowski and Piszczek looking very lively already for the home side.
Gekas is flagged offside as Greece try to hit back. Fair to say the game has come to life. Polish fans very excited by that attacking flurry.
Two big chances for Poland as Piszczek crosses but Lewandowski's shot is blocked, then Murawski's shot from the edge of the box is tipped over by Chalkias.
Lewandowski clears before Rybus tries to cross for Poland on the left flank. Then goalkeeper Chalkias claims a flick into the six-yard box by Poland's premier striker.
Another free kick for Greece, Polanski the eager beaver this time. A chance to load the box.
A superb atmosphere inside the stadium, and a chorus of boos greet Greece's early spell of possession. Then Lewandowski fouls Papastathopoulos.
Here come the teams to a rousing welcome. We're all set for 2012 European Championships. Hold onto your hard hats....
A good opening ceremony should be like a best man's speech: colourful, amusing and brief. That ticked all three boxes.
Before the action gets under way we have the opening ceremony, follow it live with my colleague JC here.
Greece qualified for the finals with the lowest goals per game rate at just 1.4 - but they proved in 2004 they can pinch the odd goal when required. Don't expect expansive football though, expect a backs to the wall grind.
Their three key men are a trio of players from Borussia Dortmund: captain Jakub Blaszczkowski, full-back Lukasz Piszczek and striker Robert Lewandowski. The latter has been linked with a move to Manchester United today and scored 22 goals in 34 Bundesliga games this season.
Poland have looked decent in their warm up matches, winning all three and putting four past minnows Andorra last time out, but they have never won a game at the European Championships. They will fancy their chances tonight.
And their opponents, 2004 champions Greece: Chalkias, Torosidis, Papastathopoulos, Avraam Papadopoulos, Holebas, Maniatis, Katsouranis, Karagounis, Ninis, Gekas, Samaras. Subs: Tzorvas, Tzavelas, Malezas, Kyriakos Papadopoulos, Makos, Liberopoulos, Mitroglou, Salpingidis, Fotakis, Fortounis, Fetfatzidis, Sifakis.
Without further ado, here is the Polish team: Szczesny, Piszczek, Wasilewski, Perquis, Boenisch, Murawski, Polanski, Blaszczykowski, Obraniak, Rybus, Lewandowski. Subs: Sandomierski, Wojtkowiak, Kaminski, Dudka, Matuszczyk, Wawrzyniak, Sobiech, Mierzejewski, Wolski, Grosicki, Brozek, Tyton.
The atmosphere in the dreamy looking National Stadium in Warsaw is rocking already. The closed PVC roof had added to the noise and the home crowd nearly ripped that roof off when their players came out for their warm up.
Good afternoon one and all and welcome to kick-off time in the European Championships. A feast of football lies ahead in the next three weeks and today, it is the turn of co-hosts Poland to get the tournament under way. They face Greece in the opener, while Russia take on the Czech Republic this evening.
The National Stadium in Warsaw will host the first game of Euro 2012.
Poland coach Franciszek Smuda is relishing the opportunity for his side to put all their hard work into action on Friday night, while veteran keeper Kostas Chalkias believes Greece's new generation can move out of the shadow of the side that won Euro 2004.
Join us from 1700 BST for the Euro 2012 curtain raiser between co-hosts Poland and Euro 2004 winners Greece in Warsaw.