How the Spanish media reacted to first competitive home defeat in 15 years


England's historic victory in Seville last night had UK pundits and the media revelling as Gareth Southgate's men ended a 31-year goal and win drought on Spanish soil in emphatic fashion.

As we beamed for Raheem Sterling, who broke his three-year goalless streak with a brace, and hailed the youngest England XI in nearly 60 years' stellar performance, some of our Iberian cousins were slightly less congratulatory, focusing on an admittedly questionable refereeing performance from Poland's Szymon Marciniak.

Jordan Pickford's lucky escape from a penalty call after he grabbed at Rodrigo was the focus of AS's 'PENALTY!' headline, with an image of England's No 1 mid-bear hug. Marciniak even got a mention on the front page, with AS saying his failure to call the foul "could have proved decisive".

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Across the board however there was resounding awe for Harry Kane's dominant contribution to England's win. AS saw England's captain as the main problem for Spain, calling him a "dragon" who "ate up Sergio Ramos and Nacho".

Many of the Spanish papers speculated on the Tottenham striker making a move to La Liga, with AS columnist Joaquin Maroto saying that seeing as Kane dominated Madrid's central defence last night, he should have the better of the rest of the Spanish premier division if he were to switch. (Meanwhile Kane responded to the Spanish press' questions on whether he sees himself as a future Real Madrid player with "not today".)

AS calls for that penalty - AS calls for that penalty - Credit: AS newspaper
AS calls for that penaltyCredit: AS newspaper

Barcelona-based paper Mundo Deportivo continued the trend, with a simply put "Kane destroys Spain", El Pais said it was a "majestic performance" and Marca hailed Kane as head and shoulders above any forward in the world "based on age, progress and ability to generate and make goals".

Basque paper El Correo said England had taken Spain back to the past, in this their first defeat in a competitive home game since 2003. Newspaper Sport rued the end of their streak, saying La Roja's magic had been broken, in an echo of "the end of a generation" headlines following Spain's World Cup exit.

Harry Kane controls the ball - Harry Kane's brilliant performance steals the headlines - Credit: Mundo Deportivo newspapers
Harry Kane's brilliant performance steals the headlinesCredit: Mundo Deportivo newspapers

Despite having only 27 per cent possession, England's opportunistic attack on the break made it the first time Spain had conceded three goals at home in their history - and all in the first 38 minutes. Sport called the first period "painful" and AS said England were "lethal" in attack.

Spain manager Luis Enrique's reaction was perhaps the most colourful however, as he praised his own "wonderful" attitude in the dressing room for holding back from killing his players.

Luis Enrique gives some advice to his players - Luis Enrique keeps his calm - Credit: Getty Images
Luis Enrique keeps his calmCredit: Getty Images

"It's wrong for me to say it, but I was wonderful at the break, as it would have been normal for me to kill the players," he explained. "I supported them and we had a great second half.

"There are times when you have to kick the table and s*** on everything, and others when you don't do that. My team, with the attitude they've shown me in these last few months, did not need me to kick the table or criticise or make three changes. They only needed support."

Sport says La Roja's magical run is over - Sport says La Roja's magical run is over - Credit: Sport newspapers
Sport says La Roja's magical run is overCredit: Sport newspapers

He praised their second half performance, but the Spanish press were less forgiving, with much of their commentary chastising their team's arrogance and AS's Luis Nieto calling out their "suicidal" high defensive line which put them 3-0 down in the first place.