5 things we learned from Spain’s thrashing win over Georgia
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5 things we learned from Spain’s thrashing win over Georgia

01/07/24 08:20

5 Things we Learnt from Spain 4-1 Georgia

Spain beat Georgia 4-1 in the round of 16 clash in Cologne, playing incredibly dominating football and attacking with skill and confidence. Here are five things we can take from the match, and what we can expect from Spain going forward in the tournament.

Rodri comes in clutch for the favourites

It’s not unusual to see the Manchester City midfielder come up with the goods when they need it most. Not only did Rodri score Spain’s equalizer with a beautiful strike into the bottom right corner to reignite their attacking spark after a shock opening own goal scored by Robin Le Normand, but he also had a passing accuracy of 93% (109/117), and won 100% of his duels (6/6).

Having already served a one match ban for yellow cards the star is set to be available for the rest of the tournament, and Spain will definitely benefit from that. His control of the tempo of matches and his ability to spread the play is second to none in world football right now. ITV pundit and ex-Manchester United captain Gary Neville said: « Rodri is the perfect midfielder ».

Not only does he have such an incredible record of winning matches with his club, but he also hasn’t lost a match with Spain in 460 days. The man from Madrid deservedly won man of the match and if Germany want any chance of shutting down Spain’s momentum, they will need to target him first.

Spain’s youthful wingers at it again

Lamine Yamal has become the youngest player to appear in a UEFA EUROs knockout match (16), and alongside Niko Williams caused ample amounts of problems for the Georgian defenders. Williams managed to boast a passing accuracy of 100% (46/46) as he continuously pushed forward into Georgia’s penalty area, dodging round defenders and creating chance after chance for his nation.

The two starlets whipped out their dance moves to celebrate Williams’ goal to make it 3-1, and you can just tell they are eager to score more and more. They have arguably been two of the most dangerous players of the tournament so far, and it will take a lot of grit and determination for Germany to stop them on Friday.

La Roja’s record of clean sheets finally broken

Despite such a convincing performance, Spain didn’t manage to keep a clean sheet after Le Normand’s 18th minute own goal. This is the first goal they have conceded in EURO 2024, and it has proven that there is a way to break through their wall of defenders.

Georgia seemed to find success in attack when pouncing on Spain on the counter. If the German players were watching, they should’ve been taking notes because this seems to be the only technique that has worked so far in this tournament to get past the Spanish backline.

Giorgi Mamardashvili has put himself on the market

Even though Georgia were knocked out fair and square, Valencia’s first choice goalkeeper still managed to compile a range of great saves in this match. The 23-year-old has stood out in every game he has played in this tournament, and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see clubs chasing after him now that he has exitted the competition.

He has become only the third goalkeeper in the history of the EUROs to make 30+ saves in a single tournament (30). The other two players to do this were Igor Akinfeev (32) for Russia in 2008 and Francesco Toldo (30) for Italy in 2000. Georgia’s shot stopper made nine saves tonight alone, and all of them were front-page worthy.

Watch out Germany!

Spain will take on Germany in the Quarter-Finals on Friday in Stuttgart, a match between the two best performing sides of the tournament so far, which is set to be a clash for the ages, and a potential goal-fest.

Although they weren’t being discussed as one of the most threatening sides before the tournament, game after game Luis de la Fuente’s men have proven that they are a side to be feared, and they could go all the way. The players just seem to click very well together and they have all the skill and squad depth required to succeed in an international tournament.

Benji Kosartiyer
Journalist
Lily Perrill

Writer

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