Gullit: England & Germany can challenge Spain

The Dutchman says that Bayern Munich and Chelsea's recent Champions League triumphs over Barcelona and Real Madrid prove that Spanish dominance can be challenged
Dutch legend Ruud Gullit believes that Germany and England can pose a serious threat to Spain's domination of international football.

The Spanish are the current holders of both the World Cup and the European Championship, while La Liga outfit Barcelona have dominated the Champions League in recent years.

However, both Barca and fellow Spaniards Real Madrid were knocked out of Europe's premier club competition by Chelsea and Bayern Munich respectively, and Gullit believes this could give German and English sides an edge at Euro 2012.

"Any pre-tournament poll across the globe is sure to put holders and reigning world champions Spain on the top of the favourites list, given they way they dominate proceedings and mesmerise their opponents into abject surrender with their short passing game," Gullit noted in his column in The Times of India.

"But two teams - one from England and one from Germany - have shown in the past two weeks that the Spaniards can be beaten at their own game with a sound strategy and clinical execution of the plans.

"I am willing to stick my neck out and say that these two countries can be a threat to the Spanish domination this time around."

Gullit was part of the Netherlands team that won Euro 88, and although the Dutch have failed to win a trophy since, the 49-year-old believes they are well-placed to challenge in Poland-Ukraine.

"Among the other teams, my countrymen have been very impressive in the qualifiers, and the way they decimated the formidable Swedes at home is a clear indication that they are battle-ready.

"The Dutch haven't won silverware for over two decades and this squad has the ability to end the title drought since our triumph in 1988."

Euro 2012 gets underway on June 8 and continues until July 1.