Spain turn on the style to send Georgia home

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Spain 4-1 Georgia

Spain set up a Euro 2024 quarter-final against hosts Germany but only after overcoming an early scare to beat Georgia 4-1.

The tournament debutants took a shock lead when Robin Le Normand turned the ball into his own net in the 18th minute but Rodri levelled six minutes before the break and Fabian Ruiz put Spain in front early in the second half, with Nico Williams and substitute Dani Olmo adding late goals.

Georgia went out, but only after Willy Sagnol’s side had offered up another thrilling display of counter-attacking football to take the game to their lofty opponents.

Spain, who thrashed Georgia 7-1 in Tbilisi in qualifying, immediately piled on pressure from the very start of the match, with Giorgi Mamardashvili saving from Pedri before doing well to keep out a deflected corner at his near post.

Williams’ strike was then deflected before Aymeric Laporte headed wide from a corner.

Unai Simón is rooted to the spot as Robin Le Normand sends the ball into his own net.

A Spain goal seemed inevitable but instead it was Georgia who took a shock lead with their first attack of the game.

Georges Mikautadze swept the ball out wide from the centre circle, Otar Kakabadze raced down the right and sent in a cross which Le Normand inadvertently sent into his own net under pressure from Khvicha Kvaratskhelia – the first goal Spain have conceded in the tournament.

Ruiz went close at the other end but Georgia, encouraged by their success, kept pouring forward on the counter, and Rodri was left calling for calm after Mikautadze somewhat optimistically appealed for a penalty after another charge into the box.

Marc Cucurella’s shot was touched wide and Mamardashvili then denied Williams, but Georgian resistance was finally broken in the 39th minute when Rodri picked out the bottom corner from the edge of the box – the sort of goal he so often scores for Manchester City.

Georgia were on the front foot again at the start of the second half with Kvaratskhelia inches away with a shot from the halfway line when he spotted Unai Simon off his line, but Spain would soon get their noses in front.

Dani Olmo celebrates after scoring Spain’s fourth.

Lamine Yamal’s free-kick was saved but Spain kept the move alive and the teenager whipped in a cross for Ruiz to nod in.

Yamal should have scored himself just after the hour after Giorgi Kochorashvili gave the ball away on the edge of his own area.

Giorgi Tsitaishvili sliced his shot as Georgia came forward on the counter again in the 68th minute.

Spain had a goal ruled out in the 73rd minute with Yamal offside in the build-up but it did not matter as seconds later Williams burst down the left before firing in a third.

Yamal twice went close himself before substitute Olmo, having squandered one chance, made it four in the 83rd minute, using a beautiful touch to make space and then rolling the ball into the net.

Today’s earlier result:

  • England 2-1 Slovakia AET

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