|David Silva makes a pass|
It was clear that Spanish Football Team Coach Del Bosque wanted to give players minutes as he fine tunes the possible EURO starting 11. His opening line-up tonight was:
Casillas; Arbeloa - Albiol - Ramos - Jordi Alba; Busquets - Xabi Alonso; Cazorla - Xavi - Silva; Negredo
& in the second half :
Valdes went in for Casillas, Iniesta for Busquets, Navas for Xavi & Torres for Negredo.
Later Pique for Ramos & Mata for Carzola
The first half side started well & got to 72% of ball possession but was not effective upfront. In fact the Spanish midfield & defence looked "sloopy" at times & China had two great chances to get ahead, one which Casillas had to miraculously stop with his leg.
The second half saw opportunities increase for Spain & China was halted somewhat as the Spanish midfield dominated & created more goal scoring chances. Defender Albiol hit the cross-bar, Iniesta hit the cross-bar & Chinas "man of the match", their goalkeeper ZENG, made three goal saving stops that frustrated the Spainiards.
However, finally Iniesta broke through & found DAVID SILVA in the 85th min for the winner. Typical Iniesta "masterpiece" down the wing to make a "death-pass" to Silva in the small square.
Outstanding match from JORDI ALBA who was unstoppable down his flank & Iniesta fired up the team since he came on in the second-half.
In conclusion, a worked victory for Spain with a better than expected Chinese team that surprised in their tactical set-up & effective counter-attacking style. The Chinese were unlucky not to have scored. Spain will need these 7 days to fine-tune a bit more their forward set-up.