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June 7, 2014
• FedEx Field, Landover, Maryland
Referee: B. Toledo
• Attendance: 50000
David Villa 60', 88'
90' + 1'
FT: EL S 0-2 ESP - all over in Maryland, and goalkeeper Hernandez is distraught at the result - which isn't exactly too bad for Roca's men, who fought well with the world champions for some time. But two Villa goals off of the bench has settled the result in La Roja's favour. It is they who go to Brazil with confidence.
FULL-TIME: El Salvador 0-2 Spain
GOAL! El Salvador 0-2 Spain - VILLA! That one is not up for debate. Good pass from Silva into Villa, who turns his defender and slots home past Hernandez. Game over, if it wasn't already.
SUBSTITUTION - El Salvador: Jonathan Barrios is off for Blanco.
Xavi with a stunning pass forward for Villa, who beats Mendoza, before the assistant waves a flag for offside. Villa, however, was not in an offside position. Poor refereeing decision.
David de Gea
SUBSTITUTION - El Salvador: Menjivar is off for striker Jonathan Aguila.
SUBSTITUTION - Spain: David de Gea is on for Iker Casillas, who gets a round of applause also. He's done very little tonight.
BUSQUETS! Rattles the bar! Spain turning on the style here as the Barcelona midfielder absolutely hits one powerfully against the woodwork, which is still shaking by the way. Hernandez was well beaten.
HERNANDEZ! Spain unlucky not to have made it 2-0. Ten blue shirts behind the ball as the goalkeeper makes a slip attempting to claim the ball. Hooked away by Mendoza, and they get the ball away luckily.
Substitute Renderos is feeling the pain after a crunching challenge with Sergio Busquets. He takes a quick free-kick, towards Menjivar on the right. Good spell for Roca's men, but Ramos eventually capitalises on the loose ball.
SUBSTITUTION - Spain: Diego Costa is off in favour of Xavi.
Of course, you cannot predict what will happen at the World Cup based on pre-season friendlies, but will Spain have trouble getting goals in Brazil? They have struggled against a superb El Salvador defence, who have made just one mistake.
It is all Spain in this second half, as Hernandez is forced to make another decent save to deny Villa a second. Lofted ball into the box, intended for the striker, but the goalkeeper jumps to claim possession.
SUBSTITUTION - Spain: Further changes from Vicente del Bosque. Xabi Alonso is off in favour of Sergio Busquets
SUBSTITUTION - El Salvador: Alvarez is off for Jaime Alas Morales.
Spain open the defence of their World Cup crown against the team they beat in Johannesburg four years ago. They take on the Netherlands next Friday night.
Furore after that goal over just who to credit the strike to! Costa and Villa both go for the shot, but it appears that Villa has got the net. It is his 57th international goal.
Poor defending from El Salvador, who are beginning to crack under pressure. Costa again with a strike, hooked away by Alvarez. Past the half-hour mark.
GOAL! El Salvador 0-1 Spain - DAVID VILLA! And finally, the duck is broken. Hernandez makes an awful mistake in missing Ramos' header, and allows Villa to head into an empty net. Goalkeeper should've been positioned better.
SUBSTITUTION - El Salvador: Santamaria is off in favour of Nestor Renderos.
VILLA! Poor shot. Backs to the wall job for the Salvadoreans, as the new New York City FC signing hits an effort which is well blocked by Mendoza, before the relieved defence gather the ball away.
El Salvador bringing on a substitute, with some activity on the touchline. What can Albert Roca's men achieve in this second half? They have fared very well so far.
Slight break in play as Hernandez, the Salvadorean goalkeeper, who is receiving a bit of medical treatment after a challenge. The stopper returns to a round of applause inside the FedEx Field.
Hernandez is a shout for man of the match here. All about the confidence, this young man. Juanfran with a decent cross into the box, but the goalkeeper anticipates well, launching out to make a good save.
SILVA! What a run from the Manchester City man. Lovely run down the middle, with the defenders stepping off of him. Had three opportunities to shoot, but dallied on the ball, before he is forced away.
RAMOS! My word, what a mistake from the defender. All too casual at the back and it allows El Salvador in, but Casillas is on hand to make an important save.
Del Bosque has rung the changes over half-time, with three new introductions. What impact can they make in this match? Meanwhile, it is El Salvador on the ball, and they are attacking at the world champions.
Andrés Iniesta Luján
Substitution - Spain: Andres Iniesta and Pedro have been replaed by Cazorla and David Silva.
SUBSTITUTION - Spain: Fabregas is out, replaced by all-time leading goalscorer David Villa.
The second half is underway at the FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland. Spain attacking from right to left, and it is they who get us going.
HT: EL S 0-0 ESP - Fabregas' fourth minute penalty miss has set the scene for a disappointing first half from the world champions, who looked very likely to score in the opening minutes. The Central Americans are holding their own.
45' + 1'
HALF-TIME: El Salvador 0-0 Spain
PEDRO! Last chance of the half from the Barcelona man. Santamaria attempting to put off the Spaniard, and he succeeds as Pedro is closed down well, sending his hurried shot wide of goal.
Coming up to the end of what has been a rather mixed first half, primarily from Spain. Outside of the boot pass from Xabi Alonso towards Costa, but Barrios is there to intercept once more.
El Salvador's Henry Hernandez looks in confident mood. Not for the first time this evening, he races out of goal, right towards the edge of the box to claim a loose ball. Has already conceded a penalty also!
Alba with a good delivery into the box, struck deep towards Juanfran who makes a late entry into the penalty area. Hernandez gets off his line to catch the ball.
RAMOS!! Spain have a free-kick in a good central position. The Real Madrid defender stands behind it, and rifles one wide of goal. Not the best strike from Ramos.
FABREGAS! Second chance in as many minutes. Iniesta with the superb chipped ball into the box, towards his fellow midfielder, who diverts his header into the near post. What a shame.
Spain not applying the killer touch in the final third. Juanfran does well to lose his marker Larin, and cut in once more, but his prospective cross fails to find a red shirt.
Diego Costa moving a bit gingerly after suffering a double whammy. Tussles with Garcia, who fails to keep up with the big man, but leaves a leg stuck in. Costa loses composure, as the ball rolls towards Hernandez who fires it straight into the midriff of the striker! He'll be fine.
Fabregas driving forward at every opportunity, lifting the ball towards Diego Costa, but Mendoza has the awareness and good positioning to intercept the ball well.
Pedro flagged offside after a neat through ball from Juanfran on the right. Roca's men playing a dangerous high line. Not much in that to be honest.
Burgos looking a bit isolated for the Central Americans, who have made little, if any progress in the opposition half. A vast majority of the play has been situated in the El Salvador half, with Alba and Iniesta impressing.
Alonso shakes off a defender, and slides in a fine through ball towards Jordi Alba on the far side. Just a tad too quick for the full-back who is unable to latch onto the pass. Goal-kick.
Larin and Santamaria over the ball. Taken by the former, and it's gone well wide of goal. Must've been a good 40-50 yards out from goal. Still 0-0 in Maryland however.
First real chance for El Salvador, after Burgos is upended. Free-kick from quite a distance however. Pretty ambitious, I suspect.
Spain with a number of players back into the starting XI, primarily those from Real Madrid and Atletico, the teams who contested last month's Champions League final. Koke featuring well in the midfield, as he picks out Iniesta, who is kept at arm's length.
Free-kick comes to nothing for Spain, with Larin deflecting the ball away. La Roja beginning to find it a bit troublesome with this Salvadorean defence.
Jordi Alba feeling a bit of pain after a strong challenge. But the Barcelona full-back should be fine, as he trots off for treatment. Spain down to ten temporarily, but they have a free-kick in a decent position.
Slight break in play as Henry Hernandez gets his shoelaces tied by a kind team-mate. Meanwhile on the field, Roca's men venture forward through Alvarez, but they are quickly turned back by the world champions.
Spain finding space in tight positions, as Iniesta and Alba combine. The midfielder picks up a pass from his club team-mate, drawing his marker towards the line, before he wins a corner kick for his efforts.
Slight lull in tempo as we approach the quarter of an hour mark. Diego Costa tussles furiously with Barrios near the corner area, as the referee points to a goal-kick. Roca's men beginning to steady the ship a little.
Another long pass from the defence, towards Pedro who attempts to beat out the challenge of Angel Larin, who does well to capitalise on the Spaniard's slip and force him out of play.
Exhibition stuff from Spain, who - I'll tell you - are only minutes away from scoring. Iniesta picks up a pass and darts in the box. Ball takes a slight nick off of Barrios, but Iniesta keeps it in play, beating away the challenge of a slide tackle. Towards Ramos, whose effort is saved by Hernandez.
FABREGAS! Blocked by the defender. El Salvador's defence at sixes and sevens as Pedro is allowed to work a good chance in the penalty box. Towards Fabregas, who is ready to pull the trigger with the goalkeeper committed, but the defender makes a last ditch block.
Hernandez being kept busy in these early stages, but Spain are beginning to impose their ruthless style on the match. Consolidating possession with some superb passing movements.
PEDRO! Spain finding a lot of success with the pass over the top. Lovely ball from Jordi Alba who picks up Pedro on the right with the lofted pass. Good control, and he faces an onrushing Hernandez who tips it away before the defender hooks it out for a corner.
Missed PenaltyCesc Fàbregas
FABREGAS MISSES THE PENALTY! Oh, what a howler. What a miss. The Barcelona midfielder hesitates in his run-up and skies that effort far over the bar.
PENALTY TO SPAIN - Controversy early on. Lovely ball towards Diego Costa, who tries to round the goalkeeper. Henry Hernandez races out, but doesn't seem to make a lot of contact with the man, if not the ball. But the referee points to the spot immediately.
PENALTY TO SPAIN!
El Salvador being broken down in the early stages as Fabregas gets forward to supplement his side's attack. Garcia repels Spain's advances, and the Central American side pick up possession.
WE ARE UNDERWAY! El Salvador get us started, attacking from right to left. What can Vicente del Bosque's men achieve here this evening?
First, the national anthems. Starting with El Salvador.
Lots of El Salvador fans here at FedEx Field, making their voices heard. The teams are out on what is a sunny afternoon over in Landover, Maryland.
TEAM NEWS: Spain coach Vicente del Bosque hands a start to Diego Costa, with Champions League final participants Koke, Casillas, Ramos all included, as is Xabi Alonso. Cesc Fabregas, linked with a return to the Premier League, starts.
EL SALVADOR: Hernandez, García, Mendoza, Barríos, Larín, Álvarez, D. Cerén, Menjívar, Flores, Santamaría, Burgos
SPAIN: Casillas; Juanfran, Ramos, Javi Martínez, Jordi Alba; Xabi Alonso, Koke, Iniesta; Pedro, Fabregas, Diego Costa
CONFIRMED TEAM NEWS:
Surprisingly, the venue for this evening's clash is hosting TWO games today. Following Spain-El Salvador, the FedEx Field - home of the Washington Redskins hosts a regular MLS fixture in the shape of DC United v Columbus Crew. Bizarre.
Tonight represents a chance for El Salvador to test themselves against the world champions. But Albert Roca's men - who have not qualified for a World Cup in 32 years - suffered defeat to Ivory Coast earlier in the week. They are not expected to uproot any trees this evening.
Del Bosque is expected to rotate his side, with those who missed the win over Bolivia in Seville last week expected to be given a runout in Maryland this evening. The likes of Sergio Ramos and Diego Costa, who featured in last month's UEFA Champions League final are in line for a start.
This friendly represents the last bit of finetuning for Vicente del Bosque's world champions ahead of the FIFA World Cup which gets started on Thursday. La Roja open against the Netherlands on Friday evening.
Good evening and welcome to LIVE! coverage of the pre-World Cup international friendly between world champions Spain and El Salvador from the FedEx Field in Maryland, USA. I'm Mohammed Ali and I'll be guiding you through the game.
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