This is Spain


The cartoon is courtesy of Guia Del Mediterraneo. How many do you know?
How many Real Madrid players were chosen for the Championships? How many Barcelona players were chosen?
Check your answers here.

So, Spain are champions of Europe again and we can forget about the bankrupt economy, unemployment, forest fires and the rest for a few hours!

Torres gets the Golden Boot after a wretched season and Iniesta is nominated the Player of the Tournament. Good decision? Yes, I think so. Casillas must have been a contender but Mr Motion just kept producing. An extra 6 games after a long season is probably the last thing he needs. Pre-season training starts in three weeks …. and then another 9 months battling against relegation …. RESPECT.

Cannot knock the back four. Arbeloa looked dodgy in the first two games but came through well. Jordi Alba will have more defending to do next season. Ramos never let us down once (HUGE surprise!) and looks as if he may have matured. Piqué had an average season but played above my expectation. Busquets? Trying to think of anything constructive he did – but can’t. Del Bosque can obviously see things in him that I can’t. Did no harm but…

Up front (when we did not play a 6 man midfield!) Pleased for Mata and Torres after difficult seasons. Silva “buzzed” a lot and was of course there when it really mattered. Cesc did what he was asked to do. Negredo failed in his few minutes (sad – he deserved a chance) but did not let the team down. Cazorla really did not have enough time to impact – and didn’t – but did OK. Llorente – sad that he did not get at least 10 minutes but there is no room for sentiment. His time will come. Brazil 2014, for example.

On a Spanish forum where everybody was getting excited/emotional/aggressive…..lots of talk about Villa and Puyol. Lots of snipes at Del Bosque. I am a huge fan of both players but let’s be realistic. (a) The defence was watertight. (b) we took the trophy home. Could we have got a better result? No. Could we have let it more goals, lost games with them? POSSIBLY. Sad for them that they missed out but that’s football.

Not sure about Xavi this time. He did all he had to do (and more) but I had thought he might have shined through. No complaints, perhaps even feel a little sorry for him. I read his own account before the self-final when he himself said he wanted to be more transcendente. He definitely shone in the final, didn’t he? The 6 man midfield meant that they were bumping into each other and the extra space that he was given really helped everybody.

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