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Spain win leaves Lithuania bottom

Lithuania 0-2 Spain
Iker Hernández's double helped the holders maintain their perfect start as the hosts lost their second successive Group A game.

Iker Hernández of Spain celebrates a goal against Lithuania
Iker Hernández of Spain celebrates a goal against Lithuania ©Saulius Čirba

Spain secured their second successive Group A win at the UEFA European Under-19 Championship with a victory that leaves hosts Lithuania in dire straits.

Luis de la Fuente's side opened the defence of their title with a narrow win against Iberian neighbours Portugal on Saturday and made it six points from six thanks to a goal in each half by Real Sociedad de Fútbol's Iker Hernández.

Lithuania had conceded a tenth-minute opener in their previous game in the section – a 3-2 defeat by the Netherlands – and despite their containing tactics against the Spanish, fell behind even earlier in Kaunas. A constant menace down the flank, Real Betis Balompié winger Álvaro Vadillo stole in from the right and rolled a pass towards team-mate Hernández who flicked in on six minutes.

The visitors continued to seek a way past Lithuania's compact formation and came close to a second when Moi Gómez flashed a left-footed shot from the edge of the area narrowly wide.

Antanas Vingilys's charges – debutants at a U19s finals – started the second half with more urgency and had the home crowd on their feet when Donatas Kazlauskas sprinted down the wing before providing Vykintas Slivka with a centre which the midfielder blasted over.     

A Lukas Spalvis shot suffered a similar fate as the half progressed but Lithuania's resolve was eventually checked when Spain substitute Adama Traoré embarked on an impressive run into the box and picked out Hernández who stroked in for 2-0.

The result put the hosts bottom of the group though they will look to improve on that status when they take on Portugal on Friday. For De la Fuente's Spain, the challenge of finishing with nine points will be set by a Netherlands team with their own designs on advancing to the semi-finals.