Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Spain book Italy date in semis

24 June 2013, 10:20

Fortaleza - Spain set up a Confederations Cup semi-final reunion with Euro 2012 final victims Italy after beating Nigeria 3-0 on a steamy afternoon in Fortaleza on Sunday to secure top spot in Group B.

Vicente del Bosque's side needed just a point to confirm a place in the last four, but they made doubly sure thanks to a fine brace of goals from Jordi Alba and a 62nd-minute header by substitute Fernando Torres.

The world and European champions will now face Italy, who they crushed 4-0 in last year's Euro 2012 final, in the second semi-final in Fortaleza on Thursday, a day after Brazil meet Uruguay in Belo Horizonte.

Nigeria were ultimately left to rue last Thursday's damaging 2-1 defeat by Uruguay, having begun their Confederations Cup campaign with a breezy 6-1 thrashing of Tahiti.

"We played against a better side, a team who've been together for a long time," said Nigeria coach Stephen Keshi.

"It's a learning process for us, it's good. We have to continue from where we stopped tonight, and build on that."

It was the teams' first meeting since Nigeria beat Spain 3-2 in the group phase of the 1998 World Cup, and if the world champions were out for revenge, they were quick to draw first blood at Estadio Castelao.

There were three minutes on the clock when Andres Iniesta sprayed a pass wide to Barcelona team-mate Alba, and the left-back weaved around three challenges before stroking a low shot past Vincent Enyeama.

Nigeria looked set for an afternoon of toil amid stifling humidity inside the stadium, but despite losing Kenneth Omeruo to injury in the 11th minute, they took the fight to Spain.

Brown Ideye and Joseph Akpala spurned half-chances, while Spain goalkeeper Victor Valdes did superbly to tip a snapshot from the recalled Sunday Mba around the post.

Despite several slick interchanges, the African champions' composure repeatedly let them down whenever they penetrated the Spanish area, but Spain were not without blame in that department either.

Roberto Soldado twice shot straight at Enyeama when clean through on goal, while Cesc Fabregas conspired to hit the post from only eight yards after being picked out by Soldado's sweeping low cross.

Ideye should have drawn Nigeria level early in the second half, but although Ahmed Musa's low centre presented him with an open goal at the back post, he miscued and was unable to dispatch a shot.

Spain introduced David Silva and Torres from the bench and within minutes of coming on, the Chelsea striker made it 2-0, flinging himself at Pedro Rodriguez's left-wing cross to score with a glorious flying header.

Having scored four times in the record-breaking 10-0 rout of Tahiti earlier this week, Torres is now the tournament's leading scorer with five goals.

Godfrey Oboabona prevented the former Liverpool man adding a third with a timely block, before substitute Muhammad Gambo spurned another good chance at the other end by slicing wide with only Valdes to beat.

Spain successfully took the sting out of the game thereafter, only for Alba to add the coup de grace in the 88th minute when he sprang the offside trap, rounded Enyeama, and rolled the ball into the net.



Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Nigeria @ 56: Words to my green f...

A leader’s job is not to dictate, but rather to be respected, admired and be a trustee, of the land we love, with so much potential, a land which should be freer than free. Its still a long way to fufilling our destiny! Read more...

Submitted by
Isaac Asabor263
Recession: An opportunity for Nig...

The recession should be seen as an opportunity for the country’s promotion as long as we all collectively conduct ourselves in a patriotic manner, writes Isaac Asabor.  Read more...

Submitted by
Black and White

We want to imitate the whites in everything because we are ignorant of our inherent originality and content. We spend all our Naira to acquire his inventions because we so oblivious of our natural endowments that we allow him have it for free. Read more...

Submitted by
Nate Nat
Adamawa State University Mubi: A ...

ADSU integrity forum has accused the Sunday Joshua Wugira, a lawyer, of adopting unorthodox tactics by abusing his privilege by attacking the integrity of ADSU Vice Chancellor Dr. Moses Zira Zaruwa, writes a News24 reader. Read more...

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
My Country Nigeria (Part One)

Poetry by Abdulsalam Jubril.

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
Recession, dearth in leadership a...

Every leader has the opportunity to become great and making himself immortal in the lives and hearts of people for generations to come. Will Mr. President seize this opportunity?, questions Abdulsalam Jubril. Read more...