This is more like it! Spain beat the Czech Republic 2-0 yesterday afternoon, in their second game of the Eurocopa. I knew La Rojita was capable of playing like this, just like I knew that Javi Martínez (!!!) would look adorable while pouting!! And I love these players in white…
And because he looks great from the back too…
Anyway, Adrián scored both goals off of passes from Juanín Mata, and their connection worked really well. They celebrated the goal by doing an “very Asturian celebration,” as El Picho said, pretending to pour sidra in the traditional Asturian way! Juanín said today that they had talked about celebrating this way, as they had already done it during the U-20 World Cup in Canada, so they believed it was lucky for them.
Adrián said after the game that “I’m happy for having scored, but the goals aren’t only mine, they’re the result of everyone’s work. I’ve known Mata for many years, and I get along really well with him, and I’m very happy to get along as well with him as I do.” Iker Muniain also had a great game; he was probably what Spain was missing against England.
David de Gea and Álvaro Domínguez hugging each other after the goals remind me of Iker Casillas and Carlos Marchena during the 2008 Euro, or Iker and Sergio Busquets during the World Cup final. I’m always happy when the goalkeeper has someone to celebrate with!
I guess our boys either didn’t understand or didn’t listen to UEFA’s chat before the tournament started (or most likely, didn’t care), because Javi Martínez (!!!) and Juan Mata got booked at the same time for protesting the decisions of the referee (or lack of), and Adrián for his half-shirt removal during his goal celebration. After the game, Javi (!!!) said, “Mata and I received yellow cards for asking the referee to do something. They had committed 13 hard, full-contact fouls, and they could have done serious damage.” Javi also said that on the personal level, he felt good and rested.
This means that our boys have to be very careful on Sunday against Ukraine (20:45h). Only five out of the 11 theoretical starters are not one card away from being suspended. The rules of the tournament say that the slate is wiped clean for the semis only when the card that the player receives in the last round robin game does not lead to a suspension. So, if Ander, Thiago, Botía (who received one against the Czech Republic as well, but for kicking), Javi (!!!), Mata or Adrián receive one against Ukraine, they will be out for the semifinal game. Any other Spanish player would have his slate wiped clean.
Meanwhile, in the other group B game, England and Ukraine tied, so here are the possibilities of Spain moving to the semis: if Spain and Ukraine tie, Spain will qualify, but whether they’re first or second depends on the other game. An English victory will mean that Spain and England are tied atop the table, and the determining factor will be goal difference, which Spain leads by two at the moment. If Spain loses to Ukraine, they’ll be out if either England or the Czech Republic wins. However, they will qualify if the other game ends in a tie and Spain does not lose 0-4.
Today, those players who didn’t play yesterday afternoon had a training session, while the starters got a spa day. They’ll have the afternoon off, before going bowling!!!