thumbnail Hello,

UEFA U21 Championship

  • 25 June 2011
  • • 19:45
  • • NRGi Park, Århus
  • Referee: P. Tagliavento
  • • Attendance: 16110

Switzerland U21 0-2 Spain U21: Herrera & Thiago hand Luis Milla's side European Under-21 Championship title

Switzerland U21 0-2 Spain U21: Herrera & Thiago hand Luis Milla's side European Under-21 Championship title


The Iberian nation were too hot for Switzerland as they coasted to a 2-0 victory courtesy of two brilliant goals from Ander Herrera and Thiago

Shop for the latest footy kit


Spain are the European Under-21 champions after producing an impressive performance to defeat Switzerland in Aarhus.

Possession football once again reigned in Denmark as Luis Milla's side reduced their Swiss opponents to speculative pot shots throughout the encounter, while proving patience on the ball reaps rewards.

The opening goal of the game came in the 41st minute when Ander Herrera nipped in to get on the end of a precise Didac Villa cross to send a powerful header past Yann Sommer. Thiago added a second in the 82nd minute with a sumptuous 40-yard free-kick to ensure the country sealed  hat-trick of World Cup, European Championship and European Under-21 Championship trophies.

Spain started brighter than any of their group games, or their semi-final against Belarus and created the first chance of the game in the third minute. Javi Martinez's powerful run saw the Athletic Bilbao man play a finely weighted through ball to Adrian Lopez inside the box. However, the competition's Golden Boot winner with five goals could only drag the ball wide.

Despite a nervy opening, Switzerland began to break up their opposition's flowing rhythm and nearly opened the scoring on the half-hour mark. The Swiss' dangerman of the tournament, Xherdan Shaqiri, controlled a bouncing ball inside the Spain box before swivelling on the spot and hitting a venomous effort which David de Gea was able to punch clear.

However, the young Spaniards sprung to life and in the 36th minute, Juan Mata found Thiago who sent a rasping low shot from 25 yards out towards goal which missed the target by a few inches.

Young Champions | Herrera's header puts Spain on their way

The Group B winners continued to step up the tempo and took a deserved lead on 41 minutes, breaching the Switzerland goal for the first time in the tournament. The marauding Didac made his way down the left wing before swinging a glorious cross into the box which was met by a bullet header from Herrera with the ball flying past the stranded Sommer and into the net.

Switzerland looked determined to claw themselves back into the final in the early stages of the second half and could have equalised on 52 minutes. Innocent Emeghara played an intelligent one-two with Admir Mehmedi before the Nigerian-born striker fluffed his lines with a tame effort from 15 yards out.

Despite Spain looking in control of the game, the young Swiss missed a glorious opportunity to get back into the game on 77 minutes through a set-piece. Shaqiri's clever free-kick into the box was met by Timm Klose, but the centre-back's header flashed narrowly wide.

The result was put beyond doubt on 82 minutes after an excellent display of vision and craft. With Sommer off his line, Barcelona's Thiago decided to try his luck with a free-kick 40 yards from goal. The effort was perfectly executed as the ball drifted over backpeddling goalkeeper and into the net.

Spain were content to see out the victory by keeping possession of the ball, to clinch their third European Under-21 Championships trophy after previously winning the competition in 1986 and 1998.

Follow Euro 2011 LIVE on
Commentaries, Stats, Player Ratings and much more,
Visit Live Scores!