Pushed into overtime despite a clear domination, the Spaniards finally eliminated Croatia in the round of 16 of Euro 2021 (5-3 ap). They will meet in quarters Friday the Blues or Switzerland.
The Spaniards went through all the emotions Monday night: surprise, joy, confidence, but also fear. As they dominated the game, they saw the Croats come back to tie to continue the game in overtime. But La Roja finally won (5-3 after) and validated his ticket for the quarter-finals, where they could find the France team if the latter defeats Switzerland.
Unai Simon’s goal gag
Until ten minutes before the end of regulation time, the Spaniards had yet done almost everything well. “Almost” because a memorable ball from goalkeeper Unai Simon first allowed Croatia to open the scoring against the run of the game (20th). After a back pass from Pedri and while the Croatian attackers put no pressure on, the Spanish goalkeeper completely lost his control to concede an incredible goal on his own. In addition to making viewers smile, this gag goal had the merit of igniting the meeting. In the stands, the checkered supporters, who came in numbers to Copenhagen, showed themselves to be lodgers: the back passes made then to the Spanish goalkeeper were loudly acclaimed.
3-1 until the 85th
The Spanish domination ended up materializing in the score. Thanks to a powerful strike, Sarabia brought her team back to equality (38th). Spain then doubled the lead by one goal from Cesar Azpilicueta’s header, transformed into an attacker, and served by a millimeter center from Ferran Torres (56th). And Dominik Livaković couldn’t do much. The Chelsea defender scores his first goal in the selection. Torres Ferran will support even more the wide Spanish domination by scoring a third goal, after easily defeating Gvardiol (77th). With 3-1 in the 80th, the Spaniards thought they were done with Luka Modric’s team.
The incredible Croatian comeback
And then the Croats had an incredible comeback. Zlatko Dalic’s players reduced the score at the end of the match (85th), by Orsic, who entered a little earlier to replace Rebic, disappointing Monday night. Then they equalized in added time (90th + 2) thanks to a goal from Pasalic’s header, synonymous with overtime.
However dominating, the Spaniards inflicted 30 minutes of additional effort. They then went on the attack and scored two goals in three minutes. First, thanks to a liberating goal from Morata. After a superb control, the Madrilenian sent a strike in the top corner. A few moments later, it is Oyarzabal who will give a little more air to La Roja.
La Roja is gaining momentum
Despite ten minutes of empty passage and this (very) big fear at the end of the game, Spain dominated its subject and showed all its offensive talent (10 goals in two games). After a disappointing start to the competition (0-0 against Sweden, 1-1 against Poland), La Roja is gaining momentum. She will face France or Switzerland in the quarter-finals of the Euro on Friday.