UEFA Nations League 2019

Group A4

Spain 6 – Croatia 0

Spain: De Gea; Dani Carvajal (Azpilicueta 75‘), Nacho, Sergio Ramos, Gayà; Saúl Ñíguez (Thiago 65‘), Busquets (Rodri 59‘), Dani Ceballos; Marco Asensio, Rodrigo, Isco. 4-3-3.
Croatia: Kalinic; Vrsaljko (Rog 20’), Mitrovic, Vida, Pivaric; Rakitic, Brozovic (Pjaca 62’); Kovacic, Modric, Perisic; Santini (Livaja 71’). 4-2-3-1.

1-0. 24. Saúl. Ran in to steer header inside near post from Carvajal cross.
2-0. 33. Asensio. Picked up loose ball outside area and fired shot past Kalinic.
3-0. 35. Kalinic (own goal). Deflected ball into own net after Asensio shot hit bar.
4-0. 49. Rodrigo. Collected Asensio pass and ran on to shoot wide of keeper.
5-0. 57. Sergio Ramos. Header unmarked past keeper from Asensio corner.
6-0. 70. Isco. Controlled Asensio pass and angled shot on turn across keeper.

Yellow cards: Santini 12’, Brozovic 39’.

Spain overran Croatia in their second group game, Luis Enrique’s side putting six goals past the World Cup runners up to take them closer to a place in next summer’s finals. After a couple of early scares, local boy Saúl Ñíguez headed the locals in front from a Dani Carvajal cross, and before half time Marco Asensio took advantage of some slack defending to make it two, and then unleashed a shot which hit the bar and went in off the back of keeper Kalinic for the third. More was to come after the break, Asensio putting Rodrigo through for him to score the fourth, and then floating in a corner for Sergio Ramos to head the fifth. With twenty minutes to go Isco completed the “set”, again from an Asensio assist, and Rodrigo, Isco and Thiago could all have added to the scoreline after that. The result though left many people wondering what might have been in the World Cup last summer had Lopetegui not been fired at such short notice.