Thiago hails Spain's substance with style

Thiago Alcántara batted away talk about his spectacular goal that helped Spain claim the Under-21 title, saying all that mattered was the result. rounds up the winners' reaction.

Spain were deserved winners in Denmark
Spain were deserved winners in Denmark ©Getty Images

With stylish approach play and dominance of possession their hallmarks, Spain claimed their third UEFA European Under-21 Championship – though final goalscorer Thiago Alcántara said all that mattered was the end result, not the means to it, however attractive.

Strikes from Ander Herrera (41) and Thiago (81) secured Spain's 2-0 success against Switzerland in Aarhus. The Swiss defence had yet to be breached before the final, but Luis Milla's men found a way through with Thiago's spectacular, opportunistic effort providing a fitting finale for a side who have looked a cut above in Denmark. rounds up the reaction from the winning team.

Thiago Alcántara
The match was good for the team, for the tournament, and the game we played. The game wasn't exactly the way we imagined, but you have to win it. The last thing you think about is how you did it.

The whole group are ecstatic. We're happy, not just for ourselves but for the whole country, and the Spanish people who came to Denmark to support us. Looking at this game, and the others, I think we deserve this title. We are lucky to have found players who are not just technically skilled, but also great people. It was a great dressing room. I leave here with a lot of 'brothers'.

[My goal] was a moment in the game, perhaps it will never happen again. I saw the goalkeeper, and I took the decision without thinking. Luckily, it went in. You take decisions during a game – afterwards you don't know why but it's instinct.

Ander Herrera
We are very happy. It's impressive. We have won the [senior] European title, but this is also a great feat. For us it is very important, and it shows our FA is continuing to do a great job. It's not only about winning the title, but also about the way we play football.

It think it means more because we had the pressure of following in the footsteps of the best national team in the world. I dedicate this to my family, my friends and everyone who has come to see us.

Javi Martínez
Well, this has been an incredible year. It seems like yesterday when we won the World Cup [with Spain's senior side], and in the same way we are celebrating this Under-21 title. And for me, this has the same importance, it's the same kind of dream. We fought very hard to win it, and this is the result of our work.

Juan Mata
Luckily, Spain have quality players, who can handle the ball very well, and so we were able to show what we needed to show and, like Javi said, we are very happy. We're closing a wonderful circle, with the world title and this European title. We'll enjoy that now.

Adrián López (adidas Golden Boot award winner)
We are very proud to be able to participate at the Olympics. It has been a long time since Spain was last there. We are very happy. We have to work very hard all year, in order [to be allowed] to go. So hopefully we'll go there and achieve the highest possible there too.