Spanish manager Vicente Del Bosque rued the injuries suffered by David Silva and Alvaro Morata, even as his side ensured qualification for Euro 2016 after recording a comfortable 4-0 win against Luxembourg.
Silva was replaced after 10 mins by Juan Mata after suffering a twist in his ankle and Morata had to be stretchered off 20 mins later after suffering heavy bruises to his fibula. Morata was replaced by Valencia youngster Paco Alcacer.
Spain took the lead just before half time when Santi Cazorla smacked in the rebound after Pedro’s initial shot was saved by the Luxembourg goalkeeper.
After a slow start to the second half, Spain eventually doubled their lead in the 67th minute through substitute Paco Alcacer, who stabbed home a Cesc Fabregas through ball.
Alcacer and Cazorla added their 2nd goals of the night in the 80th and the 86th minute respectively to cap off an injury stricken yet comfortable win for the Spanish.
Del Bosque Relieved as Spain Finally Qualify for Euro 2016
Speaking to the press after the match, Del Bosque admitted that he was relieved after his side finally qualified for the Euro finals.
“We put together a very good qualifying campaign but with a certain degree of suffering,” said Del Bosque.
“We have to congratulate ourselves because the defeat to Slovakia was burdensome.”
“As far as the way we play and renewing the team we have made progress,” Del Bosque said. “We have a team that is practically the finished article and an idea of how we want to play.”
“We have had difficult moments, but fortunately we reacted well as a team. Generally we have defended pretty well and I think today we also created a lot of chances and should have scored some more.
“The defeat in Slovakia took its toll on the rest of the campaign. In terms of how we are playing and the development of the team I think we are pretty well advanced.
“I wouldn’t say we have 11 players that will always play, but we have an idea of how we want to play and everyone is going in the right direction.”
“Things are going well for me,” admits Alcacer
Valencia striker Paco Alcacer, who has scored 6 goals in the last 9 matches for Spain, admitted after the match that he is currently going through a purple patch playing for the national team. Alcacer made the national squad in place of Chelsea frontman Diego Costa, who has scored just 1 goal in 9 appearances for the national side.
“Strikers live off scoring goals and that is what I offer the team,” said Alcacer after the match.
“Here things seem to go well for me. That doesn’t mean I can let my guard down, though, I have to keep trying so I can come back more often.”