Spain celebrates 6-0 hammering of Liechtenstein
Spain revelled today in a 6-0 hammering of Liechtenstein that sent the defending champions into Euro 2012 in celebratory style. Alvaro Negredo and David Villa netted two goals each, with Xavi Hernandez and Sergio Ramos making up the balance at the Las Gaunas stadium.sports Updated: Sep 07, 2011 14:08 IST
Spain revelled on Wednesday in a 6-0 hammering of Liechtenstein that sent the defending champions into Euro 2012 in celebratory style.
"Festival! " headlined sports daily AS.
"Massacre and qualification!" blared the daily Marca.
Alvaro Negredo and David Villa netted two goals each, with Xavi Hernandez and Sergio Ramos making up the balance at the Las Gaunas stadium in Logrono, northern Spain.
After six wins in six matches, Tuesday's result means Spain qualifies in devastating form to defend its title in the continent's championship in Poland and Ukraine with two games still in hand.
Spain had trouble at the start of the match penetrating the Liechtenstein defence.
But once their opponents' defence crumbled, the goals came thick and fast.
Negredo opened the account blasting the ball into the net from within the area in the 33rd minute, quickly following up by breaking away in the area again to snatch a second.
After the break, Xavi Hernandez made it three in the 44th minute with a direct free kick that curved over the wall and into the net, leaving goalkeeper Peter Jehle rooted to the spot like a spectator.
It was a great way to celebrate Xavi's 103rd Spain cap, beating the previous record of former captain Raul Gonzalez.
Sergio Ramos took the fourth in the 52nd minute. Villa capped off the victory with two goals in the 59th and 78th minutes.
Liechtenstein only looked threatening in counterattack, especially on the left wing with Marco Ritzberger seeking Nicolas Hasler.
Ritzberger had a decent shot on goal in the 11th minute from the left that went high but soon afterwards the game turned and the Spanish found their way through.
"It cost us a bit to get going in the match until the 30th minute. Even matches that are easy in theory are difficult," Spain coach Vicente del Bosque said after the game.
Looking at likely rivals next year, he said: "Spain, Netherlands and Germany were the first three in the World Cup. Then there are other sleepers like England, France or Italy. There are seven or eight teams that could be champions of Europe"
Del Bosque said there was "no problem" with his own contract renewal following talks with Spanish federation president Angel Maria Villa and secretary general Jorge Peres.
"Everything is resolved," he said, adding that there was still plenty of time to take a decision before the European championship.
Spain striker David Villa agreed that the start was slow for Spain.
"We had a bit of trouble in the first half. But once we found the way through a first time it was fine," Villa said.
"Now we have to think about preparing for this Euro, including taking advantage off the qualifying matches we have left. I think it is important that we qualified so early."
First Published: Sep 07, 2011 14:04 IST