SPANISH FOOTBALL | SPORTS

SPAIN 2 - ENGLAND 3 | UEFA NATIONS LEAGUE

SPAIN hosted ENGLAND for their Group clash of the UEFA NATIONS LEAGUE. Important match for both as a Spanish win tonight would have put them directly into the final 4, while England needed to win to keep alive their chances & more importantly avoiding relegation to a lower Group.

The final result was Spain 2 - England 3 with the visitors doing the damage in the 1st half with all 3 goals. Spain put up a better performance in the 2º half scoring & creating chances but the English defended well & kept onto their earnt advantage from the 1ºst half.

Spain vs England UEFA Nations League

Starting 11 teams:

SPAIN: David De Gea; Jonny, Nacho, Sergio Ramos, Marcos Alonso; Sergi Busquets, Saul, Thiago; Asensio, Rodrigo & Aspas.

ENGLAND:  Pickford; Trippier, Gomez, Maguire, Chilwell; Barkley, Dier, Winks; Sterling, Rashford & Harry Kane.


Spain vs England UEFA Nations League

The 1ºst half was a shocker from Spain which was overpowered by the English counter-attacking system. Poor defending by all back four defending Spaniards, with Ramos & Nacho out of position & all slow. England pressured the Spaniards when they had the ball & forced mistakes which allowed them to take advantage of the spaces left unattended by Spain.

Harry Kane acted as the forward reference to get the ball & lay onto the speeding & attacking Sterling & Rashford to finish off the job. Plan worked perfectly for them as England was 0 - 3 by half time.


0 - 1 (16') Raheem Sterling
0 - 2 (29') Marcus Rashford
0 - 3 (38') Raheem Sterling

Spain vs England UEFA Nations League

Much better 2º half from Spain with control of the game & creating numerous goal opportunities. Spanish Coach Luis Enrique made substitutes (Ceballos for Saul; Alcacer for Aspas & later Morata for Rodrigo) which gave Spain more vertical push forward & speed. 


The extra Spanish "aggressiveness"  & push gave their prizes when Paco Alcacer headed a goal to lift Spain & give them hopes of attempting a comeback.

1 - 3 (58') Paco Alcacer


The Spanish momentum continued & could have received a penalty when English Goalkeeper Pickford lost a ball to Rodrigo & fouled the Spanish forward before giving away a corner. The referee only saw a corner & denied Spain a penalty which could have really changed things.

From here onwards, barring an English occasion or two, Spanish attacked non-stop & bombed the English goal square, but were not able to finish off their opportunities, hitting the post etc. Spain finally managed a second goal late with a Ramos header in the last moment

2 - 3 (97') Sergio Ramos

England had defended well during the difficult last moments & managed to hold out the Spaniards to secure the victory & most importantly 3 points.

Great match, England played a top first 45 mins, while Spain showed "grit" & pride to at least pull back two goals. Spain will complain about the penalty not given but England takes the 3 points & gives Spain some things they need to rethink for future matches. Spain defensively was bad & is not fine tuned yet. 


WALES 1 - SPAIN 4 | INTERNATIONAL FRIENDLY MATCH

The Spanish National Football Team travelled to WALES to play a Friendly International match in the city of Cardiff. This game was another opportunity for Spanish Coach Luis Enrique to test new ideas & give some players some field time before the big official UEFA NATIONS LEAGUE Group game against England in Seville next week.

The final result a 1 - 4 victory for SPAIN in a relatively comfortable match with an average performing WALES without their Captain Gareth Bale recovering from muscle strain. 


WALES vs SPAIN

Spanish Coach Luis Enrique took the opportunity to give "new" players some field time with some notable names (Alcacer, Morata, Rodri, Azpilicueta, Albiol & Suso):

Spain starting 11 line-up:

De Gea; Azpilicueta, Sergio Ramos, Albiol, Gaya; Saul, Rodri, Ceballos; Suso, Paco Alcacer & Alvaro Morata.

All responded well with Spain dominating the first half & scoring three goals:

0 - 1 (8') Paco Alcacer
0 - 2 (19')Sergio Ramos
0 - 3 (29')Paco Alcacer

Notable defensive mistakes from Wales which was also trying new ideas out under Coach Riggs who also knew that their big match will be next week against Ireland in their UEFA Nations League group game.

WALES vs SPAIN

For the second half Spain took the result advantage to allow more players to get a run putting on goalie Kepa (for De Gea), Koke (for Saul), Betra (for Albiol), Jony (for Azpilicueta), Aspas (for Alcacer) & Rodrigo (for Suso).

The last 45 mins was relatively comfortable for Spain which managed a fourth goal with a header from a corner from defender Batra.

0 - 4 (74') Marc Bartra
However, Wales managed to lift a level in their play & with new legs began getting goal opportunities that later lead to a reward with an earnt consolation goal from Welshman Volkes in the 89 th min. 

1 - 4 (89') Sam Vokes

In conclusion, good game from Spain (midfielder Rodri was outstanding) which not being spectacular was effective against a "lesser" team who was without their star player Garath Bale, but showed pride & courage to score at the end.


LA LIGA DOMINATES THE FRANCE FOOTBALL GOLDEN BALL CANDIDATES

France Football made public today their initial 30 candidates for the upcoming FRANCE FOOTBALL GOLDEN BALL AWARD 2018. The winner will be announced the 3rd of December in Paris.

Golden Ball Award 2018

However, the news from our point of view is the domination of LALIGA with 14 candidates, that is, 14 names that play in the Spanish Football League:

Gareth Bale, Karim Benzema, Courtois, Isco, Marcelo, Luka Modric, Varane, Sergio Ramos, Godin, Griezmann, Oblak, Ivan Rakitic, Luis Suárez & Messi
.

The next League with most candidates are:
  • English Premier (11), followed by
  • Ligue 1 France (3)
  • Serie A Italy (2),
surprisingly the Bundesliga has none.

SPAIN | LIST FOR WALES & ENGLAND GAMES

Spanish Football Team Selector & Coach Luis Enrique has handed in his list of players for the upcoming International games between Wales & England (UEFA Nations League). 

With Sergi Roberto, Isco, Carvajal, Costa & Íñigo Martínez injured, Luis Enrique has had to make adjustments & call up "new" names like Marc Bartra, Koke, Paco Alcácer & Jonny.


Spain national football team

Here is the full list of players:

Goalkeepers: Kepa, De Gea, Pau Lopez.

Defenders: Gaya, Marcos Alonso, Albiol, Nacho, Ramos, Marc Bartra, Azpilicueta, Jonny.

Midfielders: Busquets, Rodri, Koke, Ceballos, Thiago, Saul.

Forwards: Asensio, Morata, Rodrigo, Suso, Aspas & Paco Alcacer.


CHAMPIONS LEAGUE RESULTS | FC BARCELONA | AT MADRID WIN

UEFA Champions League continued tonight with Spanish Clubs FC BARCELONA & ATLETICO DE MADRID down for their Group matches. Here is a brief summary, goalscorers & final results.

Tottenham Hotspurs vs FC Barcelona

FC Barcelona travelled to London to play Tottenham Hotspurs with a cloud over them after some bad Liga results. The Spanish Club managed to shake off the negative vibes to put in an excellent performance with a 2 - 4 victory & final result.

The starting line up for Barça was:

FC Barcelona: Ter Stegen; Semedo, Gerard Pique, Lenglet, Jordi Alba; Ivan Rakitic, Busquets, Arthur, Coutinho; Leo Messi & Luis Suarez. 

Barça got off to a great start with a 1st min COUTINHO goal. The London reacted well as the match went on in the first half but good goalkeeping from Barça goalie Stegen & a magnificent 27th min goal from RAKITIC put Barça in the driver's seat. 

To the merit of Tottenham Hotspurs they went in strong for the second half & HARRY KANE managed to pull one back in the 51st min. However, Barça & their best player LIONEL MESSI cancelled that early English effort with a marvellous 55th min goal.

Tottenham was not giving in & lifted again to keep their hopes alive of getting something positive when LAMELA scored their second in the 65th min. But there was MESSI again in the 89th min with his second & fourth goal for Barça to shut the door on the London Club.


UEFA Champions League vs Brujas


ATLETICO DE MADRID hosted Belgium Club BRUGGE
for their Group A game with Atletico winning 3 - 1. Their starting line-up was:


Atletico de Madrid: Oblak; Arias, JM Giménez, Godín, Lucas; Lemar, Thomas, Koke, Saúl; A. Griezmann & Diego Costa

The Spaniards did not put in their best performance as at time it looked that they were lacking ideas in their game. This is not unusual as their style has become "sticky" & "awkward" without the frills. So much so that Brugge got a goal in the 39th min to equalizer thanks to DANJUMA & against the grain.

However, their star forward GRIEZMANN had his night & managed to put some shine in their game with his two goals: the first in the 28th min & the second in the 67th min. Later KOKE sealed the victory for Atletico with his 92nd min goal.


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