The Spanish national team had already qualified for the 2024 Euro Championships in Germany with two games to spare heading into the November international games against Cyprus and Georgia despite a slow start to their qualification campaign.
Luis de La Fuente’s side went to Cyprus on Thursday to face their hosts in a non-consequential match, 24 hours before the fixture, De La Fuente rated his team as one of the favorites alongside the biggest names in European football and one of the heavy favorites to win the 2024 championships in Germany.
However, while they showed the pedigree of the two-time winners that they are in the first half, where they ran to a 3-0 lead within the first 30 minutes, the visitors took a slower start into the second half.
Spain took an early lead in the game through teenager Lamine Yamal in the 5th minute before Mikel Oyarzabal made it 2-0 in the 22nd minute of the game. Oyarzabal would exit the game five minutes before half-time, but he had enough time to turn provider for Joselu in the 28th minute to make it 3-0 in a comfortable first 30 minutes of the game for Spain.
Kostas Pileas pulled one back for the hosts, their third goal in eight qualification games, but just as the Spanish gaffer admitted his side’s status as a favorite, the second half showed Spain needs to be mature to finish things off.
” France, England, Germany, Portugal, Italy. We always have the same ones, but then there are surprises. Croatia always performs well in competitions. In the national teams, it is very even; they all have eleven good players in the medium term, which will be the next European Championship. We have to be mature to be able to compete at the highest level. We are in a position to fight to win. There are a lot of teams at the same level as us. We have the idea of fighting to win, then winning depends on a lot of details that take you to one place or the other.
” Fuente said.
Daniel Ademiju Idowu