Nations League round-up: Spain hand Germany worst defeat, Ronaldo remains scoreless, France beat Sweden


By: AP |

Updated: November 18, 2020 10:02:36 am

Nations LeagueSpains Alvaro Morata, proper, runs to rejoice after scoring throughout the UEFA Nations League soccer match between Spain and Germany in Seville, Spain, Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2020. (AP Photo/Miguel Morenatti)

Spain handed Germany its worst defeat in a aggressive match on Wednesday, successful 6-Zero to advance to the Final Four of UEFA’s Nations League.

Ferran Torres scored a hat trick to guide Spain to the historic victory within the decisive match in Group 4.

Germany’s solely five-goal loss in a aggressive sport had been West Germany’s 8-Three defeat to Hungary on the 1954 World Cup group stage. West Germany went on to beat Hungary within the ultimate. In non-competitive matches, Germany had additionally misplaced 6-Zero to Austria in a pleasant in 1931.

The victory ended a three-match winless streak for Spain, which hasn’t gone 4 video games and not using a win because the late 1980s.

“It’s important to get back to winning with a great performance like this,” Spain coach Luis Enrique mentioned. “We have to enjoy this great result.”


Last yr, Spain didn’t advance to the Final Four after conceding late in a match towards Croatia.

The Germans would have superior with a draw, however Spain dominated early and took management with three objectives in every half. The guests had solely two complete makes an attempt, none on the right track.

“This is definitely one of the worst defeats of my career,” Germany and Real Madrid midfielder Toni Kroos mentioned. “It hurts.”

Spain obtained the convincing win regardless of enjoying many of the match with out captain Sergio Ramos, who missed two penalty kicks within the 1-1 draw at Switzerland. Ramos had to get replaced by Èric García simply earlier than the break with an obvious muscle harm in his proper leg.

“Historic night that will help us grow as a team,” Ramos mentioned on Twitter after the match.

Spain continuously threatened up entrance, forcing Germany goalkeeper Manuel Neuer to make a number of good saves to maintain the guests from going into a much bigger gap. Spain squandered a number of counterattack probabilities all through the match in an empty La Cartuja Stadium in Seville.

“To put this type of pressure on a team like Germany, you need great collective work by everyone, in attack and defense,” Luis Enrique mentioned. “We made them suffer and kept them from threatening.”

Álvaro Morata opened the scoring within the 17th minute with a header into the highest of the online off a nook kick taken by Fabián Ruiz, who got here off the bench after an early harm to Sergio Canales.

Torres added to the lead within the 33rd with a shot from shut vary after Dani Olmo’s header ricocheted off the crossbar, and 5 minutes later it was Rodri’s header off a nook that gave the hosts a 3-Zero halftime lead.

Torres added to the rout within the 55th and 71st minutes after different quick counterattacks by the hosts, and Mikel Oyarzabal closed the scoring within the 89th.

Morata had a purpose disallowed for offside within the 23rd.

“We saw a great version of Spain,” mentioned Rodri, who scored his first purpose with the nationwide staff. “We could have scored even more. It was 6-0 but it could have been more.”

Ronaldo scoreless in Nations League, Croatia avoids demotion

Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo vies for the ball with Croatia’s Luka Modric ,left, and Croatia’s Josip Juranovic, proper, throughout the UEFA Nations League match between Croatia and Portugal on the Poljud stadium in Split, Croatia, Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2020. (AP Photo/Darko Bandic)

Croatia prevented relegation in Group Three of UEFA’s Nations League regardless of a 3-2 loss to defending champion Portugal on Tuesday.

Croatia wanted to raised the results of Sweden, which misplaced 4-2 to group-winner France within the different match. Portugal was already eradicated and had secured second place.

Croatia performed with 10 males from early within the second half after one in all its midfielders was despatched off.


Cristiano Ronaldo was held scoreless for the second consecutive match to remain seven objectives shy of the 109 scored by former Iran striker Ali Daei, the one different male soccer participant to surpass the 100-goal milestone for a nationwide staff.

One of Ronaldo’s finest probabilities to maneuver nearer to the all-time worldwide document was a first-time header that missed vast.

Mateo Kovacic opened the scoring for the hosts within the 29th minute and netted an equalizer with a shot from exterior the realm within the 65th after Portugal had rallied with objectives by Rubén Dias within the 52nd and João Félix within the 60th. Dias netted the winner within the 90th.

Croatia midfielder Marko Rog was despatched off with a second yellow card for a foul on Ronaldo simply earlier than Portugal’s second purpose.

Giroud scores 2 as France beats Sweden 4-2 and relegates it

 UEFA Nations League France’s Olivier Giroud, background, scores his facet’s third purpose throughout the UEFA Nations League match between France and Sweden on the Stade de France stadium in Saint-Denis, northern Paris, Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2020. (AP Photo/Francois Mori)

Striker Olivier Giroud scored twice to maneuver nearer to France’s nationwide staff’s scoring document because the Nations League group winner beat Sweden 4-2 and relegated it on Tuesday.

Giroud’s tally of 44 objectives places him seven behind France and Arsenal nice Thierry Henry’s document of 51.

“It always feels like he has to prove himself, he scored two good goals,” France coach Didier Deschamps mentioned, praising Giroud. “We’re not talking about a player who has never done anything up until now. People are often too hard on him.”

Unbeaten France had already booked its place within the Final Four after guaranteeing the highest spot in League A, Group Three with a 1-Zero win at defending champion Portugal final Saturday.

France ended with 16 factors from a doable 18 and Deschamps praised his gamers for doing so in a significantly robust group.

“I’m a very factual person. No other team has done or will do better. We had the World Cup runner-up (Croatia) in our group and the reigning European champion (Portugal),” he mentioned. “Not everything was perfect, so we’re not going to brag, but you also have to appreciate what we’ve done. We finished with panache, bravo to my players.”


Croatia stayed within the prime league regardless of dropping 3-2 to Portugal at dwelling, that means Sweden completed backside on purpose distinction behind the Croats.

The Swedes took the lead at Stade de France within the fifth minute when midfielder Viktor Claesson broke into the realm, skipped previous two tackles and poked a shot that clipped defender Raphael Varane and wrong-footed goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.

Marcus Thuram — son of famed France defender Lilian Thuram — was concerned in each objectives as Giroud equalized within the 16th and proper again Benjamin Pavard put Les Bleus forward within the 36th.

After Giroud began a counterattack from midfield, the ball was fed to Thuram down the left and his pinpoint cross was adroitly became the underside left nook by Giroud.

Thuram then confirmed nice footwork to weave previous three defenders within the space and spin round a fourth. Although he misplaced management of the ball, it broke to Pavard on the proper of the realm and he drilled it firmly into the underside left with the surface of his foot.

Giroud, who has hardly performed for Chelsea within the Premier League this season, ought to have scored when he headed Pavard’s cross from the proper vast when unmarked within the 53rd.

But he made no mistake six minutes later, assembly substitute Kylian Mbappé’s cross from the left with a diving header. Then Giroud virtually arrange Antoine Griezmann, directing a move down together with his chest which the Barcelona ahead blazed over the crossbar within the 75th.

Substitute Robin Quaison gave the Swedes hopes of rescuing a draw when he bundled in left again Pierre Bengtsson’s cross with two minutes left in regulation time.

With each Sweden participant, together with the goalkeeper, camped across the purpose for a last-gasp nook, France cleared the ball and Kingsley Coman ran by from midfield to roll the ball into an empty web from 40 meters out with the sport’s final kick.

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