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Spain all the way - Defining moments of the first ever team to successfully defend their European Championship title

Spain all the way - Defining moments of the first ever team to successfully defend their European Championship title

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Goal.com picks along the defining moments through the group stage and the knock-out phase of the Euro 2012 that saw the La Roja demolish the Azzurri 4-0 in the final...

GROUP STAGE - GROUP A

SPAIN vs ITALY
Spain Italy
60′ Goal Antonio Di Natale

WHAT A FINISH FROM DI NATALE!!! That could well be his first touch! Italy take the lead with a superbly-taken finish from the substitute Di Natale after Pirlo had done brilliantly to curl a ball in to the attacker who opened his body up before curling an effort with his right foot past Casillas and into the far corner.

64′ Goal Cesc Fàbregas

GOALL FOR SPAIN!! AND GUESS WHO SCORED IT?? CESC FABREGAS OF COURSE!! Iniesta and Silva combine well on the edge of the Italy penalty area, with the latter of the two slipping the ball through to Fabregas who is running from deep. His finish from 12 yards is true, and this game is level.

SPAIN vs REPUBLIC OF IRELAND
Spain Ireland Republic
4′ Goal Fernando Torres

IT'S TORRES!!!!!!!!!! Iniesta feeds David Silva with a fine through ball, which he touches off to Torres, and the under-fire striker takes it in his stride in the box and blasts the ball past Given!! Ireland forced to chase the game once more, it's a disaster for the Boys in Green.


49′ Goal David Silva

GOOOAAALLL!!!!!!!! Spain double their lead and effectively seal the victory as Silva collects the ball in the box, and fires a shot at Given. However, the Irish 'keeper's punch rolls into the Manchester City ace's path once more, and he coolly side-foots home.

70′ Goal Fernando Torres

HE'S BACK!!!!!!!! And sends Ireland home at the same time, what a performance from the big man! Yet again, possession is lost cheaply in the middle as Silva slips through Torres who runs well clear of his marker, sets up a one-on-one with Given and powers a finish into the bottom corner!! Irish fans are absolutely devastated.

83′ Goal Cesc Fàbregas

WHAT A STRIKE!! Fabregas inflicts a hammer blow on the Irish with an absolute rocket that clips the post and in from the corner. It's from close range to be fair, but the power of the shot was vivid. 4-0 Spain, it's all over now!

CROATIA vs SPAIN
Croatia Spain
88′ Goal Jesús Navas González

GOALL!!! SPAIN HAVE THE BREAKTHROUGH!! 1-0. Jesus Navas literally walks the ball into the net, after Fabregas had set Iniesta free with a delightful chipped through-ball, who then slipped the ball to Navas, leaving the Sevilla attacker with an easy finish into an unguarded net with Pletikosa pulled out of position.


QUARTER-FINALS

SPAIN vs
 
FRANCE

19′ Goal Xabi Alonso

GOALLL!!! XABI ALONSO HAS SCORED THE BREAKTHROUGH GOAL ON HIS 100TH APPEARANCE!! Iniesta slid the ball through to the overlapping Jordi Alba on the left, and he did brilliantly to beat Reveillere and loft a perfectly-weighted cross to the back post where Xabi Alonso made no mistake with his header from 8 yards. What a start for the midfielder, and for Spain!

90′ +1 Penalty Goal Xabi Alonso

AND HE SCORES!! HIS SECOND OF THE GAME!! Alonso dispatches the spot kick confidently past Hugo Lloris in the France goal. The goalkeeper dived to his left, and Alonso's firm effort flew to his right. What a way to celebrate his 100th appearance for La Roja! A brace of goals!


SEMI-FINALS

PORTUGAL vs
 
SPAIN
120′ +1 Pen SO Miss Xabi Alonso
0-0. XABI ALONSO MISSES. Fantastic save from Patricio low to his left.

120′ +2 Pen SO Miss Joao Moutinho
0-0. JOAO MOUTINHO MISSES TOO!! Another fine stop, Casillas diving to his right.

120′ +3 Pen SO Goal Andrés Iniesta Luján
0-1. ANDRES INIESTA SCORES!! Straight down the middle, Patricio dives right.

120′ +4 Pen SO Goal Pepe
1-1. PEPE SCORES!! The centre-back slots it calmly into the bottom left-hand corner.

120′ +5 Pen SO Goal Gerard Piqué
1-2. PIQUE SCORES!! Coolly dispatched into the bottom left corner by the Spain defender.

120′ +6 Pen SO Goal Nani
2-2. NANI SCORES!! Casillas had no chance of saving that, it was smashed high into the roof of the net.

120′ +7 Pen SO Goal Sergio Ramos
2-3. RAMOS SCORES WITH A PANENKA!! Pirlo eat your heart out. Ramos nonchalantly chips the ball into the back of the net.

120′ +8 Pen SO Miss Bruno Alves
2-3. ALVES HITS THE BAR FOR PORTUGAL!! Advantage to Spain now...

120′ +9 Pen SO Goal Cesc Fàbregas
2-4. FABREGAS SCORES!! In off the left-hand post. A fantastic strike.


 
SPAIN vs ITALY
EURO 2012 Final
Spain
14′ Goal David Silva

GOAL!! SPAIN TAKE THE LEAD THROUGH SILVA!! Iniesta dissects the Italy defence with a delightful pass that runs straight into the path of Cesc Fabregas. Spain's false nine shows great composure to control the ball and cross to David Silva, who nods home from eight yards. 1-0 to Spain!

41′ Goal Jordi Alba

2-0 TO SPAIN!! BEAUTIFUL FOOTBALL FROM SPAIN! Jordi Alba plays a drawn-out one-two with Xavi, passing the ball into his team-mate before racing through the Italy team and latching on to the perfectly-weighted return ball. He still has alot to do as he surges into the penalty area though, and do it he does, casually curling the ball past Buffon and into the back of the net.

84′ Goal Fernando Torres

TORRES INCREASES SPAIN'S LEAD!! 3-0 SPAIN!! De Rossi gives the ball away cheaply inside his own half and Xavi takes advantage. Torres latches on to his perfect pass before slotting a right-footed effort past Buffon and into the bottom left-hand corner. Brilliant stuff from the reigning champions.

88′ Goal Juan Mata

MATA SCORES FOR SPAIN!! 4-0!! Some lovely unselfish play from Fernando Torres sets up his Chelsea team-mate for an easy finish. Mata passes the ball into an empty net with Buffon dragged out of position by Torres' run.

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