Spain Rally To Defeat Denmark

Denmark 0-3 Spain

After a largely even first half, Vicente Del Bosque's Spain rallied to overcome Denmark thanks to two strikes from Xabi Alonso and one from Xavi...

New boss Del Bosque has much to think about after his second half line-up arguably put in a better performance than his default XI as the recently-crowned European Champions ran out 3-0 winners in Copenhagen.

Martin Olsen, meanwhile, won't be too pleased at the way his team squandered the few chances they had, although the Danes' bright start will at least give him some reason to be cheerful.

First Half

The Danes started in more confident mood, Spain taking a while to find their shape in a 4-4-2. Thus it was no surprise when the first chance fell to Daniel Jensen. The Werder Bremen man capped a fine team move with a stinging drive that Casillas did well to push wide for a corner.

At the other end Spain were being caught out by the offside trap, but they did get through once: Torres got on the end of Xavi's through ball, but was tackled by Silberbauer. The Liverpool man appealed for a penalty, but none was given.

Bendtner hit the side netting at the other end after some more fine passing play, although Puyol did well to close the angle on the Arsenal forward. Still, Denmark were having few problems approaching the Spanish area as Del Bosque's midfield four struggled to make an impact.

That said, Spain had the final chance of the first half as Xavi, probably the best of the middle unit, brought out a superb save in Sorensen before skying the rebound to bring the first period to a close.

Second Half

At half time Xabi Alonso and Diego Capel - the latter a debutant - replaced Valencia pair David Silva and David Villa. Thus Fernando Torres was left alone up front, Capel moved out to the left flank, and Xabi took up position just ahead of Marcos Senna in a midfield double-pivot, leaving Xavi, Iniesta and Capel as an attacking trio.

This had the desired effect as just four minutes after the break Spain took the lead. After some patient build-up the ball eventually reached Torres out wide; El Niño held it up beautifully inside the box before cutting it back at mid-height for Xabi Alonso. The midfielder showed a striker's instinct to viciously slam the ball goalwards, and it was 1-0.

Spain were in control now, although once again there was some adjustment required after Güiza and Cazorla replaced Torres and Iniesta. Nonetheless, barring a couple of decent runs forward for Denmark, the Furia had the best of it, not least through the excellent Diego Capel.

Indeed, Capel set up the second goal. After taking the ball around his marker he played a short but sweet pass for Xavi to drive home a twenty-yarder and thus double his team's advantage.

Denmark were chasing shadows - even the veteran Marcos Senna was allowed to get forward with regularity - and it wasn't too surprising when España hit a third. It was Xabi Alonso once more who smashed the far-post volley past Sorensen after Capel's run-and-cross.

Cazorla could have made it four right at the death with a solo effort but, to Morten Olsen's considerable relief, the ball hit the upright and bounced clear. 3-0 it stayed, and Del Bosque was left pleased but with much to think about - aptly demonstrated by his studious expression that did not waver for the entire match.

0-1 Xabi Alonso 49'
0-2 Xavi 73'
0-3 Xabi Alonso 90'

Denmark (Olsen): Sorensen; Jacobsen (Borring 70), Lauresen, Silberbauer, Agger; Rommedahl, Christian Poulsen, Jensen (Retov 78), Vingaard (Christopher Poulsen 56); Bendtner, Tomasson (Tyhgessen 46).

Spain (Del Bosque): Casillas (Reina 76); Sergio Ramos (Iraola 76), Albiol, Puyol, Capdevila; Silva (Capel 46), Xavi, Senna, Iniesta (Cazorla 63); Villa (Xabi Alonso 46), Torres (Güiza 63).

50′ [0 - 1] X. Alonso

74′ [0 - 2] X. Hernandez

90′ [0 - 3] X. Alonso

50′ [0 - 1] X. Alonso

74′ [0 - 2] X. Hernandez

90′ [0 - 3] X. Alonso

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Spain Rally To Defeat Denmark Reviewed by admin Ucop on 1:42 AM Rating: 5

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