SPAIN looks to have a new generation of potential world-beaters after they beat Germany 2-1 to become champions of Europe for the fifth time.
They gained revenge for a loss to the same opposition in Krakow two years ago to equal Italy’s record for the most titles in the UEFA competition.
The Spanish players started confidently with some crisp passing and excellent possession play that left the German youngsters chasing shadows, at least initially.
Luis de la Fuente’s men soon took advantage to open the scoring, with Napoli’s Fabian Ruiz taking a pass from Mikel Oyarzabal in the seventh minute to beat the German keeper with a powerful left-foot shot from the edge of the area.
After Fabian’s goal, the match settled down with both teams enjoying periods domination, although there was a lack of clear opportunities.
Spain just about edged the rest of the first half, although Germany had half-chances through Levin Öztunali and Jonathan Tah.
After the break it was Germany who came out the stronger, although Stefan Kuntz’s young players still struggled to create real openings.
Forced to chase the game, Germany started to leave space at the back as they played a high press, leaving themselves open to fast breaks.
After Alexander Nübel failed to hold a Fabián Ruiz snapshot, Dynamo Zafreb’s Dani Olmo put in Spain’s second goal. A late long-range goal from Nadiem Amiri was no more than a consolation for the Germans.
Spain’s coach Luis de la Fuente said: “We’ve been working for this for years. This is a group of players who are fantastic and so talented. It’s so important for Spain and Spanish football for these young lads to get the praise they deserve. I am more than proud of these players. We’ve played so, so well at times in this tournament. I can only say well done to these players, who can make history.”
Stefan Kuntz, Germany coach SAID: “We started the game not very well; Spain were very tough and we made a few errors. We then changed tactics in the second half and improved, but the second goal was a psychological blow.”