Toothless Spanish 'worrying'

Georgia's Tornike Okriashvili finishing past Spain goalkeeper David de Gea to consign the Spanish to defeat in their last friendly before they begin their title defence.
Georgia's Tornike Okriashvili finishing past Spain goalkeeper David de Gea to consign the Spanish to defeat in their last friendly before they begin their title defence. PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

MADRID • Spain are among the Euro 2016 favourites, but their 1-0 home defeat by Georgia in their last warm-up game before the tournament has set alarm bells ringing.

Nearly two years on from their first-round exit at the World Cup in Brazil, Spain lost to a team ranked No. 137 in the world on Tuesday.

"Gatillazo" (Damp squib) was the headline in yesterday's AS newspaper after the team's loss at Getafe's Coliseum Alfonso Perez stadium.

"We were looking to gain more confidence and generate a good atmosphere all around with this game but it has been the contrary, a disappointment," coach Vicente del Bosque told Marca of Spain's first defeat since March last year.

"We didn't play badly. We simply couldn't overcome an organised defence. We lacked solutions and that is the most worrying aspect."

Spain had 76 per cent possession and had 17 shots on goal but had only three on target.

Georgia, who had just four shots on goal, made the most of a misplaced pass by Jordi Alba to score.

"You can give away a goal but the fact that we haven't scored is a big disappointment," del Bosque said.

Lack of goals was not a problem for Spain in their last two friendlies - a 3-1 win over Bosnia and Herzegovina and a 6-1 rout of South Korea. The team just had a bad night in front of goal, said the coach.

European champions in 2008 and 2012, Spain begin their title defence against the Czech Republic on Monday in Toulouse.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 09, 2016, with the headline 'Toothless Spanish 'worrying''. Print Edition | Subscribe