July 19, 2024 | 11:25


Unai Simón protagonist in the national team

Jesus Carames

June 16, 2024 | 8:21 a.m.

A brilliant debut in Germany

The Spanish National Team has begun its participation in the European Championship in Germany with a resounding 3-0 victory against Croatia. This result not only reinforces the team's aspirations, but also highlights several players who had raised doubts, such as Álvaro Morata, Fabián Ruiz and Lamine Yamal. However, one of the most outstanding moments of the match was the performance of goalkeeper Unai Simón, who was once again decisive between the three sticks.

From villain to hero in minutes

Unai Simón, Murgia's goalkeeper, became the hero of the match in a play that went from being a mistake to a save in a matter of minutes. After a failure to clear a ball that seemed easy, Rodri Hernández was forced to take a penalty to prevent Petkovic from scoring to make it 3-1. However, Simón, demonstrating his special ability to save penalties, guessed the Croatian striker's intentions and saved the shot... with his face!

Although Petkovic scored on the rebound, the VAR intervened to disallow the goal, considering that a Croatian player had invaded the area before the shot. This VAR intervention saved Spain from a goal against and reaffirmed the importance of Simón in goal.

A historic penalty and a crucial save

Unai Simón's save was historic, since, as Mister Chip pointed out, it is the first penalty saved by a National Team goalkeeper in regular time since Iker Casillas stopped a maximum penalty against Cardozo in the quarterfinals of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. This data further highlights Simón's importance in the team.

But the goalkeeper's performance did not stop there. In the 55th minute, a combined play between Cucurella and Simón prevented another Croatian goal. Cucurella cleared Stanisic's shot off the goal line, and Simón reacted quickly to stop Budimir's shot after the rebound. This joint action was crucial to keep a clean sheet and consolidate Spain's victory.

The performance of the Spanish defense, combined with the offensive effectiveness of players like Morata, Fabián and Yamal, allowed Spain to debut with a solid victory in the Euro Cup. This first match has made it clear that the National Team is prepared to face any rival and that it has an elite goalkeeper capable of making the difference in key moments. With this promising start, expectations for the upcoming matches are high, and Spanish fans can dream of a successful tournament.


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