Luis Enrique’s fridge has already become an icon of this European Championship. The Spanish coach has appropriated the accommodation engineered by Marcelo Bielsa. The members of the coaching staff and props eagerly approached the chest to stock up on fresh bottles of water before the game begins so as not to disturb the Asturian coach. Luis Enrique took a few minutes to settle into his peculiar armchair. Standing, the performance of a team that was innovative for its continuity was still restless. In this second stage at the head of the national team, it is the first time that the coach only introduced a change with only three days of difference from one game to another. The closest thing he had done was when three months after having beaten Germany (6-0) only the loss of Pau Torres prevented him from repeating the entire team.
This time the change sought to bring together Morata and Gerard Moreno in the attack, given the lack of a goal that the team had once again exhibited in the premiere with Sweden. The sacrificed was Ferran Torres. Moreno occupied the right wing, the position that Quique Sánchez Flores discovered for him at Espanyol and with which he has ended up exploding.
With that only novelty, Luis Enrique did not like almost anything of what his footballers did. The same thing abroncaba Marcos Llorente who demanded Pedri to intervene more.
The only route that La Roja was finding was Llorente’s high-speed driving. Until Gerard Moreno received near the peak of the area. He made a diagonal movement from the inside out to outline the shot. His tame low left foot went into Szczesny’s hands, but Morata appeared from behind Bereszynski and got inside to deflect the trajectory.
Pursued by his mistakes in the shot and defended by Luis Enrique, Morata ran to hug the coach, who got up from the fridge to receive him. Grateful to Luis Enrique, Morata also wanted to thank the rest of the members of the bench.
The first connection between Gerard Moreno and Morata freed Spain about half an hour into the game from the burden of opening the scoring. Moreno made it 2-0, but lacked subtlety to overcome Szczesny’s exit with a choppy touch.
All of Poland seemed given over to its fate except the proud Lewandowski. In a couple of bodies in the area and a sprint race, he already warned Laporte and Pau Torres. When he picked up a rebound from the stick and smashed the shot into Unai Simón’s hand, heartbreak gripped the Spanish team.
Four missed penalties
Lewandowski went threatening to rest and returned decisive. The first time a ball flew over the area, he annulled Laporte in the struggle before rising and connecting a header that Unai Simón could not reach.
Spain could respond to the blow at the moment. The VAR detected a stomp on Gerard Moreno. And there he was the Villarreal striker with his record of 12 consecutive penalties scored. He executed it with the paradity he usually practices, but Szczesny was not fooled and Moreno had to adjust the shot so much that the shot crashed into the post. The rebound once again linked Morata with his denial before the goal and he finished off with all the goal for him. There were a total of 12 shots from Spain in the match, nine of them within the area.
With Gerard Moreno’s error, Spain has now added four errors in the last four penalty kicks. Sergio Ramos missed two in Switzerland and Abel Ruiz, in the simulation of the friendly with Lithuania that the U21s played, also failed.
The error set Spain adrift. Moreno was replaced and Morata again missed a clear chance. It was also replaced. Without a goal, Spain ended without their two area men. When the referee signaled the end, Luis Enrique’s fridge was quickly removed. The same that the coach missed through the changing room tunnel after congratulating Paulo Sousa.
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Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.