Euro '08: Day 18 ReviewPosted on: 27 June 2008 by Gareth Hargreaves
Spain crushed Russia to book their place in the Euro 2008 final on Sunday.
Spain produced a marvellous second half display to thrash Russia 3-0 in Vienna and seal their place in the final of Euro 2008.
Arsenal midfielder Cesc Fabregas, playing as a second striker, was the driving force behind the win after coming on as a substitute for the injured David Villa.
Germany 3-2 Turkey
Russia 0-3 Spain
Barcelona’s Xavi fired home club-mate Andres Iniesta’s cross just five minutes into the second half before substitute Daniel Guiza converted a superb pass from Fabregas with 17 minutes left on the clock.
Fabregas was again at centre stage, setting up David Silva who sealed a stunning second half display from the Spanish on 82 minutes.
It was a deflating end for Russia, who ended up well beaten despite being tipped by many as outsiders to win the championship after outstanding performances over Holland and Sweden.
The Russians never threatened to produce the attacking firepower that saw them dump out the Dutch in the last eight, and playmaker Andrei Arshavin was anonymous throughout.
The Zenit St Petersburg midfielder entered the game with a huge weight of expectation on his shoulders, as well as transfer interest from Barcelona but failed to deliver on the top table of European football.
Germany Vs Spain
Spain inflicted their second heavy defeat on Guus Hiddink’s side, just as they had done in the group stage but veteran coach Luis Aragones will have to do without the tournament’s top scorer Villa for the final clash with Germany.
Villa’s first-half injury is enough to rule the influential hitman out of the match in Vienna, leaving Fabregas as the likely alternative.
It was a welcome win for the Spanish who now reach their first major tournament final in 20 years and will no doubt fancy their chances against the stuttering Germans in Vienna.
Did you see this game? Was there too much pressure on Russia and Arshavin? Can Spain go all the way? Leave a comment below or share your thoughts in the 50connect forums.
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