Match Analysis: Euro 2012 - Spain 1-1 Italy

Cesc Fabregas
© PA Photos
Sports Mole brings you some analysis from as Spain began the defence of their European Championships crown with a 1-1 draw against Italy.

Having seen fellow favourites Holland and Germany begin their campaigns yesterday evening, it was the turn of defending champions Spain to make their first appearance at Euro 2012 this afternoon.

In Italy they faced a team famed for having a stubborn defence and so it was proved in Gdansk as the two side's played out a 1-1 draw.

Read on for Sports Mole's analysis of the 90 minutes in the Gdansk Stadium.

Spain Statistics:
Shots 19
On target 6
Possession 65%
Corners 7
Fouls 13

Italy Statistics:
Shots 11
On target 6
Possession 35%
Corners 2
Fouls 19

Was the result fair?

Spain may well have controlled the encounter in terms of possession, but Italy were well worth their point.

Spain's performance

Quite why Vicente Del Bosque didn't start the match with a striker is a head scratcher. Although Torres fluffed every chance that went his way after his introduction, it highlighted that a striker was required from the word go.

Italy's performance

Typically Italian! While at times it wasn't pretty, Cesare Prandelli's side did everything they needed to in order to secure a draw. The composure that Antonio Di Natale showed in front of goal is also worth a mention.

Sports Mole's man of the match

Andres Iniesta: You run out of superlatives to describe the Spanish and Barcelona attacker. He was at the centre of anything good that the Spaniards conjured up against their opponents. His ability to glide past defenders is a joy to watch.

Referee performance

No complaints about the performance of Hungary's finest referee Viktor Kassai. He allowed the game to flow and only cautioned players when the offence merited it.

Biggest gaffe of the game

Take your pick from anything Fernando Torres did during his 17 minutes on the pitch! We are going for his first involvement when he allowed Italy goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon to get the better of him in a one-on-one situation.

What next?

Spain: Providing they begin their remaining games with a recognised striker Spain should comfortably see off Croatia and the Republic of Ireland to advance through.

Italy: Having collected a point from what looks to be their hardest group game, Italy will be confident of progression. Four points from the next two matches should do it.

Fernando Torres
Read Next:
Team News: Balotelli starts, Torres misses out
>



You May Like
Recomended from Sports Mole
Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Chelsea32243565273875
2Tottenham HotspurSpurs32218368224671
3Liverpool34199670422866
4Manchester CityMan City32197663352864
5Manchester UnitedMan Utd321712350242663
6Everton341610860372358
7Arsenal31176863402357
8West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom33128133942-344
9Southampton31117133740-340
10Watford33117153754-1740
11Stoke CityStoke34109153750-1339
12Crystal Palace33115174653-738
13Bournemouth34108164963-1438
14West Ham UnitedWest Ham34108164459-1538
15Leicester CityLeicester32107154153-1237
16Burnley34106183349-1636
17Hull City3496193667-3133
18Swansea CitySwansea3494213968-2931
19Middlesbrough33412172343-2024
20Sunderland3256212658-3221