Spain holds off the Swiss squad in a shootout win
Spain proved that they are still one of the best picks to win in the Euro tourney this year as they went on to outlast the Swiss squad in a huge win, going 3-1 in the penalty kicks. The team came out on top and they put in a lot of work to make sure they get to the semis once more.
It was a game full of clutches as both sides did not give up on their plays. Neither was able to score big in full-time and had to go to extra time. The result was still the same - the draw forced the shootout and Spain finally won.
The Swiss team nailed only one shot in the penalty kicks as they missed the last three to lose the game. Spain made three of five and they proved to be at the top of their game so far. For the fourth time in history, Spain has won yet another match through penalties.
Spain beat the likes of Denmark in 1984, Italy in 2008, and Portugal in 2012. It does seem that they have a knack for winning these kinds of games too. On the other hand, all of the Swiss’ knockout games have all led to a shootout, which was the same with Poland in 2016 and France this year.
This year’s Euro tourney is now tied with the 1996 and 2016 editions for most games that were sent to extra time . They are tied at five and might even go for more with still a few games left to play.
Spain owned this game despite not making a goal until the shootout. The team had 28 shots and 10 of those were so close to the net. They held the ball for 73% and almost nailed the 1,000-mark for passes at 969, which was also set for 90% accuracy.
Switzerland, on the other hand, had a total of eight shots and two of those were on target. They were held to just 27% with the ball and made only 369 passes en route to a 70% accuracy. They were so close to winning had they not failed to score one more goal.
Mikel Oyarzabal scored the last kick that closed out the game for good. He was pleased with the win and is glad to see his squad move on to the next round.
‘I knew I couldn't miss and luckily the ball went in’, said the Spaniard. ‘On the way to the spot many things went through my head but I knew exactly what to do’.
Spain now has a chance to make sure that their run this year will not go to waste. They will get a much better push and luck has been on their side.
Words: Paul Daniel Flores