First half key, insists Lopetegui

Julen Lopetegui insists Spain’s first half was key to their 8-0 demolition of Liechtenstein in 2018 World Cup qualifying on Monday.

Spain scored just once and mustered only three attempts at Liechtenstein’s goal inside the opening 45 minutes, until they netted a further seven after the break, and Lopetegui believes the foundations for their rout were laid early on.

“I’m happy with the team’s performance and the three points. It’s important to start well,” the Coach said after the game.

“We had a ​​very good second half but also [did well] in the first. What we sowed in the first half, we picked up in the second.

“Ultimately, the players are masters of their destiny. We try to help them, but Diego [Costa] is a great player and showed it.

“We decided to start with Diego and when [our opponents] tired, Alvaro went on and did well.

“When teams keep clean sheets, it’s also to the credit of their defence.

“They are three important points [against Italy]. Nothing’s being played for as it’s the second game, but it‘s true that it’s a game we have hope and desire for.

“Sometimes, the name of your opponents can lead to deception, but team played well and had a good match.”

Tags 2018 World Cup Julen Lopetegui Liechtenstein Spain