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Euro 2012 qualifier

Lithuania 1 - Spain 3

Spain beat Lithuania 1-3 on Tuesday night to make it five wins out of five, and they are already virtually sure of a berth in next year's European Championship finals. There were serious doubts about the poor state of the pitch and Del Bosque adapted his line up accordingly, resting some of his more tired players and drafting in the three members of his squad from Athletic Bilbao. It was Xavi though who gave them the lead early on, his shot from outside of the area taking a deflection off the boot of Skerla to fly over Karcemarskas in to the net. The keeper did well to save from Llorente and Villa either side of half time, but Casillas had to be on his toes to keep out a long shot from Panka, and twelve minutes in to the second half the East Europeans equalised, Valencia's Stankevicius drilling a long shot wide of Casillas after a dangerous attack had been headed clear. Karcemarskas was in action again a few minutes later to tip a Xabi Alonso free kick over the bar, but with twenty minutes to go he could do nothing to stop Kijaniskas from turning Mata's cross in to his own net under pressure from Llorente. The result was still in doubt though until seven minutes from the end, when Xavi and Silva combined to send Mata through to score the third. It was a record 19th win in a row in qualifying competitions, and Spain can already get out the map of Poland and the Ukraine to plan for next summer's festivities. (29.03.11)