Spain Reign again in Ukraine

Spain started the game quicker out of the blocks than the Italians and almost had the lead within ten minutes. After some quick trademark passing Iniesta lashed a shot on goal, but it whipped inches over.

betfair 1They got their lead shortly after though, a defence splitting pass from Iniesta sent Fabregas charging past Chiellini along the edge of the box, he took the ball all the way to the goal line before chipping back for David Silva. Silva outsmarted the defenders to get to the ball first and head into the far corner.

Italy slowly managed to compose themselves and gain more possession, but despite the end to end play, neither team could really fashion an opportunity

As half time approached Spain mounted a blistering counter attack and through the middle, Jordi Alba played the ball to Xavi and sprinted forward to collect a perfectly time and weighted return pass, to then slide the ball past the on rushing Buffon for 2-0.

Interestingly Spain made an early substitution, bringing Pedro on for David Silva. This meant all of Spain’s players on the pitch played for either Real Madrid or Barcelona.

Italy tried desperately to get Pirlo on the ball so could attempt to dictate the play, but they were dealt a deadly blow with half an hour to go.

Thiago Motta lasted four minutes after he came on for Montolivo, he was stretchered of with a hamstring injury, leaving Italy to see out the game with ten men.

Having fought valiantly, the extra man paid off for Spain as the game drew to a close and they extended their lead, Torres who scored the winner in 2008 effectively sealed the victory.

Italy cheaply surrendered possession and Xavi played a perfectly weighted pass to Torres, who sprung the offside trap perfectly. Torres allowed the ball to roll in to his stride and stroked the ball in to the bottom corner.

There was still enough time for Spain to grab a fourth through late substitute Juan Mata, Torres had kept in a long cross and squared the ball to Mata for an easy tap in.

Spain became the first team to retain their European title and to win three consecutive major tournaments.