|March 8th, 2010|
|25||Pool B||4:30pm||ESP - ENG||2 - 0 (1 - 0)||Final|
England, still unbeaten in this competition, were the first qualified for the semi-finals of this World Cup, while Spain, semi-finalists of the last three World Cups, needed to beat England, then count on Pakistan beating Australia later in the day, to have a chance to make their way to the final four on goal difference.
With less at stake, England started with not as much determination as usual and Pol AMAT, left alone in the circle, had a good chance around the 10th minute mark. This was the wake-up call England needed and they tightened the lines, putting more pressure on the Spanish circle but without creating much danger, including on a scrambled penalty-corner. James TINDALL had a long run, leaving two Spanish defenders flat-footed with a fake to penetrate the circle, but his final shot was weak and wide.
A quick combination in the circle earned England a penalty-corner but Ashley JACKSON, their remaining penalty-corner striker since Richard MANTELL’s injury, flicked it wide. Both teams, playing their fifth game in nine days, seemed physically tired, making multiple unforced errors. Spain earned a penalty-corner in the final minute of the period, after a collision between two English defenders, and Pau QUEMADA added a goal to his tally, Spain going into the break with a meagre one-goal lead.
The pace picked up in second half. Eduard TUBAU tried a difficult lob over James FAIR in the English goal but his ball ended up marginally too high. The game was flowing back and forth but was scarce in real chances until a superb collective Spanish movement in the 64th minute ended with three players arriving in front of James FAIR and Eduard TUBAU the last one to touch the ball for the second Spanish goal.
English could not react significantly and the lacklustre match ended with the three points for Spain.
Match facts (Spain v. England):
> Spain will play in the Final 5-6 on Friday, 12 March, unless PAK beat AUS by at least 13 goals.
> Spain have featured in the Final 5-6 three times winning on all three occasions beating ENG (3-0 in 1973), India (2-0 in1978) and Argentina (3-2 in 1986).
> Pau Quemada scored his 4th PC goal at Delhi 2010.
> Eduard Tubau scored his first goal in Delhi and his ninth in World Cup competition. Only Ignacio Escudé has scored more World Cup goals for Spain (11).
> This marked the first time England failed to score in a WC match since they fell 1-0 to Korea on 8 September 2006.
> England have now failed in score in 3 of 7 World Cup matches against Spain.
> Australia can now finish top in Pool A if they beat Pakistan.