For football players under the age of 21, there has never been a stranger to the end of the euro. Following the tournament group stage in Hungary and Slovenia at the end of March, Domagoy Bradalic brought Croatia to the knockout stage in compensation for England refereeing, and will play in the quarter-finals on Monday.
Croatia entered the knockout stage for the first time in the 4th U-21 European Championship, and its opponents will be the strongest opponents. Spain is the defending champion and the number one favorite against bookmakers this time. Igor Bišćan’s team of this generation will play in Maribor at 6pm on Monday.
In the last five U-21 European Championships held from 2011 to 2019, they entered the finals four times and won the title of the best youth national team in Europe three times, which fully demonstrates Spain’s dominance in the youth team . Until their last championship two years ago, they were led by current coach Luis de la Fuente. The decisive goal in the final against the German team was scored by former Dynamo player Dani Olmo.
Even after winning the championship in 2019, De La Fuente continues to rule Europe with a new generation. Although the group size has declined slightly, the Spaniard’s performance in qualifying for this year’s euro has been impressive. Their record is 9 wins and 1 tie, but what is really impressive is that they only scored one goal from the penalty spot during the entire qualifying cycle.
They continue to maintain the same dominance in the championship team competition. They have not conceded a goal in three games. They defeated Slovenia and the Czech Republic by 3:0 and 2:0, but they didn’t score in the match against Italy. Therefore, the Spaniard did not score a goal in more than 12 hours of active play against Croatia. No wonder they are the top favorites in the entire game.
All the stereotypes that the Spanish national team instilled into the audience during the period of 2008-2012, led by the Xavi Iniesta duo and the Barcelona philosophy, are absolutely valid for this national team. Among all her employees, except for one or two, no player is at least a very good technician, and some of them are already European football elites in passing, resisting pressure and controlling the ball. Small space. In fact, a large part of the national team has experienced Barcelona’s La Masia, but also experienced similar academies (Villarreal, Real Sociedad), which put the technical aspects of football games on player development This is very helpful to the development of the player.
This national team does not have a superstar like France or England. The club has allocated tens of millions of euros for this purpose, but the Spaniard has already relied on the team’s style of play that they have learned since childhood. College. This is why they are very coordinated, no player has to adapt to different roles, not the role he has trained for his entire life. After all, this is evidenced by their dominance in young categories over the past 10 years, which have always been based on the same style.
Sezi Cuenca (Almeria) and Guillamon (Valencia) were very patient in the first phase of the offensive structure and performed well in their positions. Together with the two midfield playmakers Zubimendi (Real Sociedad) and Villar (Roma), they allow the team to resist oppression, which is why their opponents usually avoid playing. Zubimendi and Villar are typical Spanish midfield organizers, they control the rhythm of the game. Villar showed a better offensive role in the group stage of the game. He entered the penalty area from the backcourt and finished shooting. Overall, he was the best player in the team, while Zubimendi was in charge of the rhythm. .
In the last third of the game, it is difficult to predict the four-a-side from the first minute, but a name should be determined. This is Brian Gill, a guy who did not enter the group stage squad because he was invited to participate in the Qatar World Cup qualifiers for the senior national team, but he often participates in the “little” European Cup qualifying games and is the best on the field. One of the people.
Gil is a winger for Sevilla and he has been loaned to Ebar this season. Aibar is the weakest team in all offensive parameters in La Liga this season, and Gil is the only bright spot. Although he only scored four goals with four assists, he was the team’s second scorer and first assist. However, his basic statistics, such as the number of goals and assists, are not the focus of evaluating this player. He is the only person on that team who is constantly playing a role on the court and is dangerous for his opponents. For the 20-year-old Eibar winger, the number of successful dribbles, key passes and similar parameters is very promising. It is almost certain that Julen Lopetegui will play an important role in Seville next season.
Among other wingers, we should definitely pay attention to Marco Cucurera (Getafe), Xavi Pad (Spanish), Blasin Diaz (Milan), Pino (Villarrea) Er) and Manu García (Gijon). The quality of these players is roughly the same, but the characteristics are different, which provides flexibility for De La Fuente to prepare for the game.