City’s David Silva threaded the eye of the needle as he scored Spain’s second goal during their 4-0 thrashing of the Republic of Ireland.
Silva was deployed in an attacking role along with Chelsea’s Fernando Torres who continued his return to form with a performance that showed desire as well as marksmanship as he justified his return to Spain’s starting lineup.
Silva’s goal, early in the second half, came in between a brace for rejuvenated striker Torres and Spain’s performance was topped by a goal for substitute Cesc Fabregas meaning the Republic of Ireland became the first side to exit the tournament following an earlier defeat to Croatia – their first consecutive defeats in a major finals.
Spain completed around 850 passes in their demolition of the Republic of Ireland who once again conceded an early goal that ex-City ‘keeper Shay Given might have done better with after Torres slotted home forcefully from an acute angle.
On the back foot for much of the game and passed to death by the defending European Champions, Ireland couldn’t resist for long as errors were cruelly pounced on by the Spanish.
Much has been said about England’s need to show more flair against Sweden on Friday, but Spain’s display, alongside Germany’s confident games so far, have illustrated that good technique and modern tactics are generally winning out so far at Euro 2012. Let’s hope that England have more luck than the Irish as they go into the Sweden game hoping to cement their place in the group.