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Scintillating Spain avenge Slovakia defeat

Published: Saturday 5 September 2015, 22.40CET
Spain 2-0 Slovakia
Jordi Alba and Andrés Iniesta scored in the first half as La Roja settled an old score to take top spot in Group C on head-to-head record.
by Graham Hunter
from Estadio Nuevo Carlos Tartiere

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Match statistics

SpainSlovakia

Goals scored2
 
0
Possession (%)75
 
25
Total attempts17
 
5
on target3
 
2
off target9
 
3
blocked5
 
0
against woodwork0
 
0
Corners9
 
3
Offsides2
 
2
Yellow cards0
2
Red Cards0
 
0
Fouls committed6
 
8
Fouls suffered8
 
6

Standings

SSI Err
Published: Saturday 5 September 2015, 22.40CET

Scintillating Spain avenge Slovakia defeat

Spain 2-0 Slovakia
Jordi Alba and Andrés Iniesta scored in the first half as La Roja settled an old score to take top spot in Group C on head-to-head record.

  • Jordi Alba's sixth La Roja goal sets Spain on their way to Group C leadership
  • Iker Casillas marks 100th appearance as captain with two fine saves
  • Slovakia concede twice in a match for the first time in two years
  • Diego Costa's goal drought for Spain continues but he wins penalty for his side's second
  • Next games: FYR Macedonia v Spain, Slovakia v Ukraine (8 September)

Spain surged to the top of UEFA EURO 2016 qualifying Group C with a convincing 2-0 win over previous leaders Slovakia, Jordi Alba and Andrés Iniesta scoring on a sparkling night of football in Oviedo.

From the outset, the European champions looked confident, quick and prepared to play a high-risk, high-pressing game. They nearly paid the price for such a daring, attacking philosophy when Sergio Ramos stumbled on the ball and allowed Robert Mák the chance to sprint towards Iker Casillas' goal. Slovakia's liveliest player shot wide, though, and within moments regretted his miss still more as David Silva – terrific throughout – clipped a 20-metre chip right into the path of Jordi Alba and the full-back headed his sixth international goal.

Spain profited from a strategy of pushing four men into the strike line whenever they had the ball in Slovakia's – and backing those up with three midfielders close behind.

©Getty Images

Jordi Alba wheels away after putting Spain in front

Opportunities came and went but it was a counterattacking pass from Cesc Fàbregas to his Chelsea team-mate Diego Costa that opened up the head-to-head lead at the top of Group C. Costa dashed through and was clipped by Matúš Kozáčik and Iniesta was ice-cold in dragging his penalty to the goalkeeper's right for 2-0.

Casillas was not totally without work. Saves either side of half-time from Marek Hamšik and substitute Michal Ďuriš kept the occasion of his 100th cap as captain special. Before the end Silva, twice, and Fàbregas both passed up gilt-edged chances to round off a good performance with the third goal, and Sergio Busquets raked another effort wide from distance.

Last updated: 07/09/15 0.04CET

http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuro/season=2016/matches/round=2000446/match=2013989/postmatch/report/index.html#spain+seize+group+c+summit

Lineups

Spain

Spain

Slovakia

Slovakia

1
CasillasIker Casillas (GK) (C)
23
KozáčikMatúš Kozáčik (GK)
Yellow Card30
3
PiquéGerard Piqué
2
PekaríkPeter Pekarík
5
Sergio BusquetsSergio Busquets
3
GyömberNorbert Gyömber
6
IniestaAndrés Iniesta
Goal30
Substitution85
4
TesákLukáš Tesák
Yellow Card83
10
FàbregasCesc Fàbregas
Substitution67
6
GregušJán Greguš
11
Pedro RodríguezPedro Rodríguez
13
HrošovskýPatrik Hrošovský
Substitution73
15
RamosSergio Ramos
15
HubočanTomáš Hubočan
16
JuanfranJuanfran
16
SalátaKornel Saláta
18
Jordi AlbaJordi Alba
Goal5
17
HamšíkMarek Hamšík (C)
Substitution61
19
Diego CostaDiego Costa
Substitution75
18
ŠventoDušan Švento
21
David SilvaDavid Silva
20
MakRóbert Mak
Substitution46

Substitutes

12
De GeaDavid de Gea (GK)
12
NovotaJán Novota (GK)
23
RicoSergio Rico (GK)
1
MuchaJán Mucha (GK)
2
AzpilicuetaCésar Azpilicueta
5
MichalíkĽubomír Michalík
4
BartraMarc Bartra
7
NemecAdam Nemec
7
VitoloVitolo
8
DudaOndrej Duda
Substitution61
8
KokeKoke
Substitution85
9
ŠestákStanislav Šesták
9
Paco AlcácerPaco Alcácer
Substitution75
10
StochMiroslav Stoch
13
Juan MataJuan Mata
11
VittekRóbert Vittek
14
BernatJuan Bernat
14
JakubkoMartin Jakubko
17
CarvajalDani Carvajal
19
SaboErik Sabo
Substitution73
20
Santi CazorlaSanti Cazorla
Substitution67
21
ĎurišMichal Ďuriš
Substitution46
22
IscoIsco
22
PečovskýViktor Pečovský

Coach

Vicente del Bosque (ESP) Ján Kozák (SVK)

Referee

Damir Skomina (SVN)

Assistant referees

Jure Praprotnik (SVN), Robert Vukan (SVN)

Fourth official

Andraž Kovacic (SVN)

Additional assistant referees

Matej Jug (SVN), Slavko Vinčić (SVN)

Legend:

  • GoalsGoals
  • Own goalOwn goal
  • PenaltiesPenalties
  • Missed PenaltiesMissed Penalties
  • reds_cardRed Cards
  • yellow_cardsYellow cards
  • yellow_red_cardsYellow/red card
  • SubstitutionSubstitution