Thursday June 14, 2012 Group Stage: Group C Finished Arena Gdansk

Spain 4 - 0 Republic of Ireland

  • Torres 4’, 70’
  • Silva 49’
  • Fábregas 83’

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  • Live Commentary

    • Spain
    • Republic of Ireland
    • 90+3' All over in Gdansk. A 4-0 victory for Spain. Ireland's heaviest defeat at a major tournament. And Spain's biggest win at the European Championships.
    • 89+3' Going to be three minutes added to this contest.
    • 88' Sergio Ramos on the ball at the back for Spain as we head for full-time. Referee is free to blow up any time he wishes.
    • 87' The Irish fans making themselves heard in the ground. Great support right to the end alongside the Spanish.
    • 86' Giovanni Trapattoni forced to accept his side's destiny in this tournament. They will return home after their final Group C match against Italy on Monday.
    • 85' Cesc Fábregas scores his second goal at Euro 2012. Spain are the first team with two players on multiple goals at Euro 2012.
    • 84' Spain with so much time and space. Has been the way of the evening. Spain with an enormous 27 shots at goal compared to six by Ireland.
    • 83' Spain can beat their biggest European finals win beating Ireland by a four-goal margin. At Euro 2008 they beat Russia twice by three goals; 4-1 in the group stage and 3-0 in the semi-finals.
    • 82' Not much to be said. St Ledger booked for a late foul on Silva.
    • 81' GOAL! Fabregas slams a fourth goal home for Spain. So easy for Spain as the ball flies between Given and Andrews. Ireland caught sleeping.
    • 80' Ireland also shuffle their pack by giving Paul Green a run for Whelan.
    • 79' Iniesta departs to be replaced by Santi Cazorla for Spain.
    • 78' Xavi drills a free-kick wide of goal after McGeady had fouled Silva. This match going through the motions. A mismatch in every sense.
    • 77' Ireland are going to throw on James McClean, who replaces Duff. First cap for the Sunderland youngster.
    • 76' Martinez booked for a late challenge on Whelan. Bit of a silly tackle to make at this stage of the match.
    • 75' Keane finally gets a shot away at goal from just inside the Spanish box. Ball flew at the goal, but Casillas dived to his left to make the stop.
    • 74' Ireland have never lost consecutive games at a major tournament. That record ends tonight.
    • 73' A change then for Spain as Torres departs to be replaced by Fernando Torres.
    • 72' Fernando Torres is now on four goals - equalling the Spanish record of David Villa for most European finals goals.
    • 71' Torres has come to the party as Ireland are on the verge of leaving it. Just utterly outclassed in two matches. Grim viewing for the Irish.
    • 70' GOAL! Torres races through the middle to beat Given and Spain lead 3-0. McGeady robbed of the ball by Silva, who plays in Torres. Superb run and finish.
    • 69' Ward comes up with a brilliant tackle on Torres after three passes carried Spain into the Irish box. Stunning play from one end of the park to the other end.
    • 68' Duff with the corner into the area, but St Ledger deemed to be fouling in the heart of the Spanish box.
    • 67' McGeady with a lovely cross into the middle. Fine bit of play, but Ramos rises above Casillas to head behind for a corner.
    • 66' Change for Spain as Javi Martinez is introduced to replace Alonso.
    • 65' Andrews hesitates in space from McGeady's pass. Was a chance to fire the across goal, but not taken by Ireland.
    • 64' Keane takes a painful knock from Busquets studs after Walters fouls Alonso in the air.
    • 63' Busquets smashes a shot wide of goal under pressure after Torres tried a backheel.
    • 62' Whelan smashes the ball behind for a corner after Silva cut the ball across goal. Ireland being cut open as Spain win a sixth corner.
    • 61' Duff to McGeady and out to Ward. McGeady with a hopeful cross into the heart of the Spanish area that is taken out of the air by Casillas.
    • 60' Torres has scored the 40th goal for Spain in Euro finals. Only Germany (58), Netherlands (56) and France (47) have scored more.
    • 59' Andrews is on the deck here. Doesn't look in great conditon. But he takes a breather before returning to the action.
    • 58' Iniesta plays in Torres, who is just offside. Stephen Ward just managed to step up in time.
    • 57' Arbeloa a consant menace for the Irish. Not really found a way to deal with his runs. Duff having to come back to stop the run of Jordi Alba.
    • 56' Busquets deprives McGeady of the ball. Given dives to pull off a brilliant one-handed stop from Xavi's shot. A blistering shot from inside the area. Ireland survive.
    • 55' David Silva is now the top scorer for Spain with 10 goals since they were crowned world champions in July 2010. David Villa is on nine goals since winning the 2010 World Cup.
    • 54' Spain stroking this ball around like a training session. Walters fouled by Alonso, who is booked for that effort in the Irish half.
    • 53' Spain may well be seeking a few goals here for the good of their goal difference. Ireland can't get near the ball.
    • 52' Ireland have real problems now in that they have to chase this game. Could end up losing by a heavier margin as Spain hit on the break.
    • 51' Xavi and Xabi Alonso (106) have completed more passes (excl. crosses) than the whole Ireland team put together (104) in the first half.
    • 50' GOAL! Silva strokes the ball home for the second goal. So easy for Spain, and Ireland are heading for the exit door. Given punches Torres' shot straight to Silva. Suicide.
    • 49' Spain continue to pass the ball around with so much ease. So much ease. Xavi plays in Arbeloa, but his shot is halted by Given. So much space again for Spain.
    • 48' Spain have won the last 16 matches in which they were 1-0 up at half-time. The last time they failed to win was sveen years ago (7 Sep 2005 vs Serbia and Montenegro 1-1) in World Cup qualifying.
    • 47' A change for Ireland as Jon Walters takes over from Cox for Ireland. Seems to be a 4-4-1-1 formation. Keane yet to get in this match. Or tournament when one comes to think of it.
    • 46' Spain get the second half off and running.
    • 45+2' Iniesta drives a shot at goal. Tipped over by Given. Fine shot and fine save. And that is the end of the first half. Somehow Ireland traipse off trailing only 1-0.
    • 44' A couple of minutes to be added to the first period.
    • 43' Whelan is booked for a late tackle on Xavi. Had to take one for the team there with Spain breaking at speed.
    • 42' Alonso lifts a volley wide of goal. Tried to guide the ball into the corner of the net from distance. Fine effort, but off target.
    • 41' Given saves from Arbeloa's shot before St Ledger blocks Xavi's effort. Ireland working so hard to deny the Spanish space.
    • 40' Ireland trying to get to the break only one goal down and looks like they may achieve their aim.
    • 39' Xavi sets himself up for a shot from 25 yards out. Gets his foot through the ball, but easy take for Given as the ball skids off the surface.
    • 38' A good run by Torres to race onto the ball from Iniesta, but Ireland quick to regroup. Seems all they have been doing in this first period.
    • 37' Can't fault the Irish heart, but there is a lack of quality in the final third as Cox loses it on the edge of the Spanish box.
    • 36' The Irish fans certainly enjoying their night out. Singing with their hearts out while Spain continue to set up camp in the opposition half.
    • 35' Keane picks up a booking for a late challenge on Iniesta.
    • 34' Dunne knocks the ball away from Torres's cross after the referee had got in the way of Andrews. Pass, pass...
    • 33' Andrews late on Jordi Alba. The Irish fans continue to sing, but their team has made 92 passes compared to 255 Spanish passes.
    • 32' Whelan lifts a high hopeful ball into the box, but nothing comes off it. Ireland working ever so hard here without seeing much joy from their output.
    • 31' Torres gives Dunne the slip in the box, but Torre then clips Duff. Almost in for a free shot at goal.
    • 30' Here is how the other match worked in Group C between Italy and Croatia earlier today. Croatia recover to earn draw
    • 29' There is a reason why Spain are European and world champions and we are seeing it out in there in all its glory. Given knocks the ball away under pressure from Torres.
    • 28' Arbeloa heads the ball back to Silva, but he is just offside. Ireland getting the runaround in the rain.
    • 27' Spain with over 70 percent of possession. Rare moment of attacking Irish play, but McGeady's delivery is really poor.
    • 26' Pique heads wide from Xavi's delivery. The Irish defence nowhere near the Barca defender. An awful piece of defending from Ireland.
    • 25' Alonso slams a shot at goal from distance. Ball takes a nick flying over the bar..and surprise, surprise....Spain have another corner.
    • 24' Alba dinks a cross into the middle, but Silva directs a header over the bar. Ireland again stretched.
    • 23' Ireland have now conceded two of the four fastest goals at Euro 2012 (3’ vs Croatia and 4’ vs Spain). Greece conceded the other two (3’and 6’ vs Czech Republic)
    • 22' Given dives to beat away an effort from Iniesta. Ireland could go 2-0 down here unless they get to grips with this. Far too easy for the Spanish.
    • 21' Whelan clears the free-kick before Dunne rises to head clear Alba's cross. Good defending by the Irish.
    • 20' Andrews brings down Iniesta and the Spanish have a free-kick 30 yards out.
    • 19' Duff tries to lob a high ball into the path of Keane, but just overcooks the longish ball as Casillas comes off his line to collect.
    • 18' This is Fernando Torres’s first goal at a major tournament since scoring the winning goal in the Euro 20008 final vs Germany - 1-0 of course for all you Spanish fans.
    • 17' Pique decides to dispense with the short passing stuff as his effort from distance is emptied into the mitts of Given.
    • 16' Duff forced to knock the ball behind for a corner. Only 16 minutes gone, but Spain are all over the Irish like a rash here.
    • 15' Alonso slips the ball into Xavi's path. St Ledger gets a vital touch on the ball. Ireland awarded the goalkick after it came back off Xavi.
    • 14' Fernando Torres has now scored 29 goals for Spain equalling Fernando Hierro’s career total. Only Raul (44) and David Villa (51) have scored more goals for Spain
    • 13' Andrews certainly working hard to close down space. Prevents Jordi Alba from getting the ball up the park. Or nearer the Irish goal for the moment.
    • 12' Ireland fans doing all the singing, but Spain are doing all the passing. Silva slips the ball into Torres, but Silva guilty of handling.
    • 11' Duff swings over the corner. Dunne met it with some relish, but failed to get any real power on the header. Better though from Ireland. At least it is going on at the right end.
    • 10' Andrews bounds onto a loose ball at the edge of the Spanish box. Fires in a shot. Deflects behind for a corner to the Irish.
    • 9' Almost a second for Spain as Torres knocks a shot wide from Arbeloa's header across the goal. Should really be 2-0. Ireland being dragged left, right and centre.
    • 8' Fernando Torres scores in the fourth minute of the match equalling the fastest goal by Spain at a Euro finals tournament, scored by Raul at Euro 2000 vs Slovenia 2-1.
    • 7' Silva gets too much space on the edge of the box. McGeady robbed of possession. Given this time keeps out Silva's shot. These are worrying times for Ireland.
    • 6' Dunne was left swiping at fresh air as Torres dashed away from him before the ball went through Given, who is enduring a torrid time at this tournament.
    • 5' GOAL! Torres wallops a shot high into the net. Brilliant finish from the striker. Robbed Dunne of the ball and Given is beaten. Awful goalkeeping it must be said.
    • 4' The Ireland starting line-up contains four of the top 10 most capped Irish players. Shay Given leads the bunch with 122 matches. Followed by Robbie Keane (117 caps), Damien Duff (fourth with 97 caps) and O'Shea (76 caps).
    • 3' Busquets and Andrews collide in the middle of the park. Could have been a booking for the Irish midfielder. Bit late with that one.
    • 2' Cox fires a shot at goal from distance, but Casillas dives to make an agile, alert stop. Ireland trying to get on the front foot here.
    • 1' We are off and running. Ireland a 14-1 shot to win this match tonight. Long odds in a two-horse race.
    • 19:40 Teams out on the pitch and we are almost ready to go after a rousing rendition of both respective national anthems. Can Ireland stay alive in this tournament? Huge ask this evening. A huge ask.
    • 19:35 And how about a flavour of life in the country from Sean Fay, our very own Lord of Gdansk? He's been having a fine time in Poland. Latest blog
    • 19:30 So remind yourselves of the situation in Group C after the Croatia-Italy game with the latest standings. Table
    • 19:25 Want a flavour of how this game could play out? In their game against Italy, Spain made 733 passes, almost twice as many as Ireland did against Croatia (368). But passes don't always mean goals...
    • 19:20 These two sides have met just once in major tournaments – Spain had the better on penalty shootout in the 2002 World Cup (1-1 after extra-time).
    • 19:15 Not a good omen for the men in green - Ireland have won only four of their 24 official meetings against Spain, losing 13.
    • 19:10 Giovanni Trapattoni: "I am proud to be the manager of the Irish players because the Irish players have heart. But we have achieved results not only with heart because we have met France, Bulgaria, Italy, many other teams and we played the same. We play our football. It's creative enough and it's technical enough. Maybe Spain have one or two more creative players, but football is not only about creative players."
    • 19:05 Vicente del Bosque: "We trust all of our three strikers. All of them can play and we know all of them will do everything for the team. We have used Llorente - he helped us to become champions and he is a different player. We played in Brussels with one forward and we put another forward on instead of Fabregas. Sometimes, it's a question of football. We are really confident about our strikers - that's why we brought them here."
    • 19:00 So the headline news for Spain is the inclusion of an out-and-out striker - Torres comes in to the line-up at the expense of Fabregas. As for Ireland, there is just one change - Cox in for Doyle up front.
    • 18:55 SPAIN: Casillas, Jordi Alba, Sergio Ramos, Pique, Arbeloa, Xabi Alonso, Busquets, Xavi, Iniesta, Torres, Silva /// IRELAND: Given, Ward, Dunne, St Ledger, O'Shea, McGeady, Whelan, Andrews, Duff, Keane, Cox
    • 18:50 The action has just finished in Group C's other match of the day, Italy v Croatia. Details here
    • 18:45 Good afternoon and welcome to LIVE coverage of Spain v Ireland in Euro 2012 Group C. Victory for Spain will get their tournament on track after a draw against Italy, while Ireland know a defeat would see them exit the tournament.
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