Saturday, 7 July 2012

LA ROJA turn-on the fury to Slay Italy , the Critics , the doubters, and I

Spain's National Soccer side  are referred to as :  LA FURIA ROJA  ( the red fury ) . Boy ! did they turn-on the fury and style in Sunday's Euro Championship Final . 


Spain Slaughtered Italy , and become the first team to win back to back Euro Championships. The Champions produced a bench mark attacking display of such ferocity , overpowering Italy , and any team or critic that dared harbour any mirage Spain had flat-lined .  To prospective adversaries: beware ! Spain's dominance is far from over ; if this blogger thought  Croatia and Portugal had shown the rest how to erode the Spanish threat , they turned the tables swiftly , and on this showing , the rest would not even see their coat tails . 


SPEED AND GHOST RUNNERS :  Going into Sunday's final , there was a lot of talk Spain were starting to get predictable , and boring with all that possession . In truth ,  it was becoming soporific . Critics like me simply aroused their anger , because they responded by serving the best last ,  Ushering a new Paradigm - What Spain did in Sunday's Final was not only to apply constriction to Italy ,  they opened-up another dimension  -  speed,  ghost movement , and out-manoeuvring of the opponent. Italy like the rest of us thought Spain would leave the heavy artillery right in front of their defense , and try to patiently wear them down ,  passing and probing. Spain were cleverer than that , throwing Italy's plans into disarray , by going for a quick killing - pinning the opponents down as usual , but their passing and skill was sometimes too quick for the eye and imagination , and with the opponent wondering where the red shirts were , Spain orchestrated play at velocity to set-up a deep-runner , usually anyone , who would be undetected arriving in the box to be on the end of these quick and subtle moves .  Once the efficacy of Spain's Venom took hold , Italy died in installments. Spain created chances in a way no one would have expected , or be able to counteract in match situation . You could only hope , as a manager your team hung-on  ; or luck saves you from conceding . Spain were unstoppable


ITALY IN SLOW MOTION :  My favourites to win the tournament have nothing to be ashamed of losing to such a side. Spain had landed their fangs all too fast..... they were reeling even before they conceded the first goal. They just could not get to grips with Spain. Pirlo was mobbed every time he had possession making it difficult to develop any ideas ; sadly too , his allies in midfield - De Rossi , Machisio , and Montelivio were fragmented and forlorn ; this lack of coalescence in the Italian midfield meant an absence of functionality of any kind in the Italian team . It  bordered on irresponsibility at times the way Spain operated unchallenged and unfettered in Italy's last third .  As an on-looker , i sensed they were either tired physically and mentally , or simply , Spain were playing to standards beyond their comprehension . Which ever , the question would always remain why they could not give a bit more...... Injuries to Chiellini and Motta were  a blow , but Spain were already dismembering the carcass long before.




SPAIN BY THEMSELVES : The rest of us look with trepidation as Spain have now shot into orbit with all their historic achievements ,  and perhaps just as important is the force behind their power . After Sunday , i get the vibes these guys have more to come. They conjure images of Muhammed Ali in his boxing prime. The way he despatched opponents ,  the impression he left, the dexterity he exhibited. Opponents then and now find these Legends overwhelming to contend with. I have not seen the current Argentina team ,  and even Brazil as hosts to the 2014 world Cup ,  i do not think have a team ready to trouble Spain yet.... Spain are therefore in a class by themselves going into the World cup.  Not since Brazil retained the  world cup in 1962 has any team managed such a feat . It is worth remembering Spain's triumph in 2010 was the first time a European team won the world cup outside of Europe. Spain have one more record to add : No European team has won the World Cup in South America  ; and the last European team to retain the World Cup was Italy in 1938.  The bulk of this squad should be together in 2014 , so how about back to back world cups ?  Spain in a League by themselves must be hankering uncharted territory . The Force is with LA ROJA