Tuesday’s good & bad results
At last the international break is over, which means that my sleeping schedule can go back to normal!
The La Rojita result was good, the La Roja one not so good. Let’s start with the good stuff, and put the bad stuff after the break, so you don’t have to see it unless you want to!
Sergio Canales scored the game winner as Spain beat Poland 1-0. His goal was quite ingenious – watch it here – but as you can see, this wasn’t the first time that he and Thiago had attempted something like that. They had scored in this way just two months ago, when they were playing with the U-19 team in the Euro championship. It was the idea of Ander Herrera to repeat the play, which they call “la picadita,” on Tuesday. Thiago said, “it was a play that we had done with the U-19 team, it worked out well for us and we wanted to try it again.” Maybe Poland should have studied more Spanish highlight reels…
With the win, Spain will enter into the second qualification round, which will determine the seven teams (out of 14) that will dispute the U-21 Euro along with hosts Denmark next year. The draw for that round will take place on Sept. 10 and the games will be played Oct. 10-13. The Eurocopa tournament will determine the teams that get to play in the 2012 Olympic Games.
Juan Mata tweeted about the game after, saying, “we suffered but we did it! We had to win two out of two (games) and that’s what we did… fantastic strategic goal of Canales. On our way back to Spain, hugs!!”
Meanwhile, La Roja lost 1-4 to Argentina at El Monumental. Fernando Llorente scored Spain’s lone goal, which was a pure Spain style goal. Other game notes: with this defeat, Carlos Marchena’s streak of 56 games without a loss ended. Xabi was the captain in the absence of Iker and Xavi. And the game must have left such a bad taste in their mouths that Álvaro Arbeloa remained quiet on twitter after it, though Cesc did tweet.
The best part of the game came before and after, when the players were exchanging hugs and shirts, since so many of them are current or former teammates. I might do an “in case you missed it’ just for those non-game moments.
And just so we can end on a happy note, here’s more regarding the team winning the Príncipe de Asturias award: they were congratulated by the Spanish national basketball team, themselves the winners in 2006 after they took home the equivalent of the World Cup for basketball (they’re currently trying to defend the title). Sergio Llull said that the team “deserved it for winning the Eurocopa, the World Cup and for making football history.” Meanwhile, Jorge Garbajosa said the team earned the award for “allowing 40 million plus Spaniards to enjoy themselves” and for “the values they impart, such as group work.” Ricky Rubio added that the team “has shown that they’re not only the best and they win, but they play beautiful football and that’s important for the fans.” And Prince Felipe himself said he was “happy” that the team won his award, since he believes they meet all the requirements for it.