Spain’s Forwards Inspire Confidence

Spain thrashed Croatia 3-0 in a UEFA Euro Group B match in Berlin last Saturday to start their tournament campaign on a very promising note. Álvaro Morata, Fabián Ruiz and Dani Carvajal scored in the first half to leave the Croatians stunned.

Luis de la Fuente’s team thus took a significant step forward towards qualifying for the knockout stage. They still have matches against Italy and Albania left, but will fancy their chances of making it to the next round.

An Exceptional Attacking Display

Spain fielded a front three comprising of Morata, Nico Williams and Lamine Yamal, with Morata as the centre-forward. Yamal, the precocious 16-year-old, was not at his best during the initial 30 minutes or so, but grew in stature thereafter.

He did not get enough supply of the ball initially, but then played his part in each of the last two goals scored by La Roja, registering an assist in the third. Yamal’s inch-perfect cross into the box was met by Carvajal to seal the deal for the Spaniards.

Prior to that, Rodri’s brilliant through pass to Morata paved the way for Spain’s first goal of the match. Rodri has done it consistently while playing for Manchester City, but doing so for the national team surely satisfied him a great deal.

Morata’s calm finish to score his 36th international goal must also have given him a lot of confidence. The 31-year-old has been Spain’s main striker for quite some time now and keeps delivering for his team.

Williams, meanwhile, was Spain’s primary creative outlet until before they scored their opening goal. With Yamal struggling to beat his markers initially and Morata not getting enough passes played to him, Williams was bothering the Croatian defence with his incisive runs.

Croatia tried playing short passes inside their own half to slow the tempo of the game down and also managed to frustrate the Spaniards by denying them the chance to have the ball. However, the floodgates were opened once Spain scored the first goal.

Spain maintained the lead in the second half with their assured passing. Croatia had a few chances, but the Spanish defence held firm to deny them the opportunity to make any sort of a comeback.

High Confidence Going Forward

Spain will face Italy on Thursday in a battle of European heavyweights. Italy is the defending champion and has already defeated Albania 2-1. The Italians are a depleted side if one compares them with the 2021 squad, as some of the country’s best players have retired.

Still, Italy should pose a significant enough threat to the Spaniards in their next match. If Spain is able to get even a point from that match, it will have enough chance of progressing from the group by beating Albania in its last group game.

With their emphatic win over a strong opposition in the first match, Spain has fired a warning to its upcoming opponents. It remains to be seen how far they manage to progress this time around. A title run is not out of the picture.

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