in case you missed it – Spain vs. Lithuania
In case you missed it – Spain vs. Lithuania [2010-10-08].
The people of Salamanca get a sobresaliente (A+) for their support of La Roja, while the goalposts get a suspenso (F) for constantly getting in our way!
One. Other signs of support from the crowd at the Helmántico: chanting “Iker, Iker” before the game, chanting “Iniesta” every single time he took a corner or a free kick, shouting “fuera” (out!) at the Lithuanian fans when they got rowdy, cheering all the substitutions, especially the one of Sergio Ramos for Arbeloa, for the former’s great game, which included two goal assists, and for the latter’s ties to Salamanca (Álvaro was born there). And then there was the chanting of “Vicente, Vicente” at the end of the game.
VDB thanked Salamanca after the game for their “affection towards the team and towards me.” Santi Cazorla described the crowd as “incredible.” And Iker praised the commitment of the fans there, and added, “it’s a pleasure to go anywhere in Spain, but here they were phenomenal.”
This was Spain’s first game back home since winning the World Cup.
Two. Great goals, no? And all three of them came off of headers! Fernando Llorente scored two, assisted by Sergio Ramos and Santi Cazorla, and David Silva put the icing on top of the cake with his goal, which also came off a Sergio Ramos assist. Fernando celebrated his first goal with Sergio three times (two hugs and one high five) and dedicated it to fisio Miguel Gutiérrez, who is from Bilbao. It’s a shame that Aritz Aduriz wasn’t able to join the header party, considering his penchant for scoring headers so far this season with Valencia!
(Warning: post very image-heavy)
Three. Other things that get a sobresaliente:
– Fernando’s tight shirt.
– Aritz Aduriz’ debut – he became the 17th player to debut with the shirt of La Roja under VDB (in the space of about two years). After the game, he said it was a moment that he will never forget, but that the most important thing was that Spain added three points to their total. He revealed that VDB had told him as he was checking in to “stay calm foremost and then to help the team.”
– the decision not to sub out David Silva for Pablo Hernández. When the officials signaled a change, David Silva walked towards the sideline, but at the last minute the substitute was changed to David Villa. Silva would of course go on to score Spain’s third goal.
– Santi Cazorla ready to challenge Lithuanian player Tomas Danilevičius after a hard tackle. FYI, Danilevičius is listed at 1.91m to Cazorla’s 1.68m. That’s a difference of 23 cm. Go Santi!
Four. Other things that get a suspenso:
– Sergio Ramos’ injury – he left the game hobbling due to pain in his right ankle, but the doctors of the team say that he shouldn’t have any problems playing against Scotland on Tuesday.
– Xabi Alonso’s cold – he looked very “boss” in the stands next to Nacho Monreal and Víctor Valdés, as the ones that didn’t make the final cut, but I would have preferred to have him on the field, although Santi Cazorla did a commendable job. Xabi is also expected to make it to the next game – VDB confirmed that he won’t be calling anyone up to replace them.
– Llorente’s bleeding mouth. When that happened, I feared for the game.
Five. Footballers are expressive people, between gestures, high fives, winks and expressions of frustration.
Six. The individual players section.
Like the start of his season with Real Madrid, Iker didn’t have much to do during this game. That’s good, but it also means that the camera was almost never on him. Still, we got these moments – check out Captain España’s intense stare, perfect profile and original save.
Meanwhile, the delectable Puyol spent the pregame and game getting a certain part of his anatomy aired out, both voluntarily and involuntarily. And once again, hello Puyi’s thighs!
I was quite disappointed after Puyol got kicked in the chest that he didn’t lift up his shirt to check the damage.
Geri Piqué has a future on TV: these could be his audition tapes for Baywatch (left) and any reality TV show (right).
Sergio looked like he was in a lot of pain, pobrecito! On the bench, he got his leg checked out. Lucky doctors.
By the way, Sergio played in his 70th game with La Roja, and became the youngest player to reach that number at 24 years and 192 days. Interestingly enough, he had debuted in Salamanca five years ago. He is now ranked 11th all time on the most capped list, surpassing Emilio Butragueño, who was at the game.
Seven. The substitutions: Pablo Hernández for former club teammate Villa, Aduriz for former club teammate Llorente and Sergio for current club teammate Arbeloa. Love the beso between Sergio and Álvaro!
Eight. The banquillo. Everyone on this team is hot. Seriously.
Nine. I love the difference in height of the players! Llorente is a giant and the bajitos (Iniesta, Cazorla and Silva) are so mini, especially when they are standing together! It looks like Santi can barely reach the top of Fernando’s head! He was probably already standing on tiptoe.
During the national anthem, the camera panned from Llorente to Capdevila to Cazorla. It was like descending stairs.
Llorente even makes Biscuits and Piqué look small.
Ten. La Roja is known for its teamwork.
Eleven. It’s a contagious disease.
Twelve. For David fans, and Valencia fans who miss seeing these two together.
Thirteen. One of my favorite parts of the game is actually the part that happens after the game.
There were cute hugs between our own players, and when Iker went to exchange his shirt, he took it off and his captain’s armband came flying off and fell to the ground (bottom left). He didn’t notice, so it got left behind on the field. I’m sure one of the utilleros went back to retrieve it. It would have made a good souvenir for anyone who could have gotten their hands on it though.
I would have preferred Spain’s players to copy the very good example set by Montenegro’s players, but this is not too bad. Puyol and Piqué ended up topless, while Busquets, Iker and Santi exchanged their shirts, but had a layer underneath. Boo.
Fourteen. Postgame interviews! Silvia Barba (TVE’s sideline reporter) couldn’t resist touching Fernando Llorente as she talked with him. She did that several times, and who can blame her? The picture on the top right shows the instant where Capdevila joked with Llorente as he gave the interview. And poor Fernando ended up having to ice his right ankle too!
This was the moment where Vicente del Bosque said he was “muy contento” with how the game turned out. Very easy to see, no? And how cute is Aritz?
Someone also asked Geri Piqué – JOKINGLY – in the mixed zone whether he would answer a question in catalán. And Geri, and the rest of the reporters, all laughed.
Fifteen. It appears that Álvaro Arbeloa – how I love him – spent the whole way back from Salamanca to Madrid tweeting! Between the tweet announcing that he was on the bus and the one saying that they had finally arrived in Madrid – about two hours apart – we found out the following: Sergio is doing well and will play on Tuesday, Álvaro won’t be bringing the Cup to Zaragoza (he’d like to but it’s not possible), the anti-drug test he was called to do after the game was done via urine, he didn’t like the Mafia II game on Play and is dying to try out 2K11 – where he wants to be MJ (Michael Jordan), the players got mini replicas of the World Cup, Pipa (Gonzalo Higuaín) should concentrate on scoring goals and not on twitter, he and Albiol are an unstoppable team at videogames, Gladiator is his favorite movie, and the book he’s reading right now is Imperator by Isabel San Sebastián.
He’s also now the mayor of the Helmántico, with two check-ins. Go Álvaro!
Sergio and Iniesta also tweeted about the game.
Iniesta’s was boring, as all his tweets are: “very happy with the victory tonight. A big thanks to everyone for their affection and support. To Scotland on Sunday!”
Sergio tweeted about his injury: “hi friends… we’re here on the bus after a good game with the national team (three more points). In the end, it was just a hard knock (referring to his leg). I hope to play on Tuesday.”
He also tweeted this photo of him with Biscuits doing the same old pose. We’ve had Iniesta and then Piqué. Who’s next?
The locker room looks quite messy too. That brings back good memories of this.
Sixteen. Looking ahead to this weekend: the players returned by bus to Madrid right after the game. Saturday is an off day for the players, and they won’t return to train until Sunday at 11h. In the afternoon, they’ll travel to Glasgow for their third Euro 2012 qualifier. We know what at least one player will be doing today: Álvaro Arbeloa will be the pregonero for the Fiestas del Pilar in Zaragoza.
And the U-21 team plays tonight in the first leg of their playoff for the 2011 Euro against Croatia at 21:30h Spain time! Also at stake is a place in the 2012 Olympics! Let’s go La Rojita!
Posted on October 9, 2010, in games, la rojita and tagged aduriz, arbeloa, busquets, capdevila, cazorla, del bosque, iker, in case you missed it, iniesta, llorente, pablo, piqué, puyol, sergio, silva, villa, xabi. Bookmark the permalink. 70 Comments.