Portugal lowers the soufflé of Spain

Portugal lowers the soufflé of Spain

The Portuguese team draws in the 83rd minute and leaves ‘la Roja’ with bittersweet feelings

MADRID, June 2 (.) –

The Spanish soccer team started the League of Nations with a discreet draw (1-1) against Portugal in a match played this Thursday at the Benito Villamarín stadium, a duel decided seven minutes from the end with a goal from Ricardo Horta in his second game as a Portuguese international.

Spain was better, but did not finish the job and left alive a team that has broad shoulders after its recent successes. Without Cristiano Ronaldo in the eleven, Portugal went from less to more and found an excessive prize -but also sought after- in an action that was born on the right side in Joao Cancelo’s boots.

Until that moment, and despite the approaches of the team led by Fernando Santos, Spain was comfortable with the ball and handled the game as they pleased. Especially at the beginning when only Rafa Leao was capable of standing up for the ‘tugas’. Meanwhile, Luis Enrique’s men pressed down the flanks and looked for spaces.

One of them was found by Gavi, who was the best of the match, and served on a plate so that Ferran Torres -in turn- gave the goal to Álvaro Morta, who scored his twenty-sixth goal as a Spanish international, placing himself at the height of Emilio Butragueno.

The goal was an excellent counter that showed the national fang in the final meters, yes, always trying to loop the loop with infinite passes. There was a lack of verticality but until then it was not an impediment for Spain to take advantage on the scoreboard.

That is part of the philosophy of Luis Enrique, whose teams always have to dominate the rival to show their splendor. With Spain it is costing him despite the brilliant games of the last European Championship or the win against Germany (6-1) because -except for a shot by Carlos Soler- it was the Portuguese who ended up controlling the stake.

André Silva gave the warning a few minutes before the break and Sarabia replied with a direct free kick from the edge of the box. Little thing for a selection that had lowered the leads in pursuit of its rival. The date of the match, with the tank almost out of gas at the end of the course, did not help a team that came out in the second half further behind than Luis Enrique would have liked.

Rafa Leao wasted the tie in a very clear one-on-one and Bernardo Silva began to cause damage down the right flank, taking advantage of Jordi Alba’s raises. The culé winger had the best chance of the second half with a header that went by millimeters and with which the mood of the Sevillian night would have changed. By then Portugal had already scored the equalizer in that move made by Horta.

Spain turned in the final minutes but also neglected in defense. In the end, ‘la Roja’ took the point for granted in its debut, although not to the sensations of a team that has the World Cup in Qatar just around the corner. The next commitment will be this Sunday against the Czech Republic on the occasion of the second day of the Nations League.


–RESULT: SPAIN, 1 – PORTUGAL, 1 (1-0, at halftime).


SPAIN: Unai Simon; Azpilicueta, Pau Torres, Diego Llorente, Jordi Alba; Gavi, Busquets, Carlos Soler (Koke, min. 62); Ferran Torres (Dani Olmo, min. 62), Morata (Raúl de Tomás, min. 70) and Sarabia.

PORTUGAL: Diogo Costa; Joao Cancelo, Pepe, Danilo, Guerreiro; Bruno Fernandes (Matheus Luiz, min.81), Otavio (Cristiano Ronaldo, min.62), Moutinho (Neves, min.46); Bernardo Silva, André Silva (Guedes, min.62) and Rafael Leao (Horta, min.72).


1-0, min.25, Morata.

1-1, min. 83, Horta.

–REFEREE: Michael Oliver (ING). He warned Sarabia (min.37), Diego Llorente (min.72) and Busquets (min.92) in Spain with a yellow card; and Moutinho (min.39), Bernardo Silva (min.40), Matheus Luiz (min.84), Guerreiro (min.89) and Pepe (min.93) in Portugal.

–STADIUM: Benito Villamarin. 41,000 spectators.

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