Spain Under-17s boss Santi Denia admits he is ‘heartbroken’ after their defeat in the U17 World Cup Final but concedes England “were fair winners.”
England came back from 2-0 down to beat Spain 5-2, exerting revenge for their penalties loss to La Rojita in the European U17 Championsip over the summer, but Santi insisted he was “more than proud” of his ‘great’ generation.
“I’m heartbroken for the boys,” the Coach said after the game.
“I’m more than proud of them and the work they’ve done in these two years. It was a Final and the level was very high.
“I think they became a team. We became champions of Europe and now we’re runners-up of the world. I can’t be prouder of them, I feel fulfilled as a Coach.
“I’ve managed to turn this group into a unit, and that’s the most important thing. Winning or losing a Final is very difficult.
“England’s first goal hurt us. When they took a step forward and we found space in behind, our quick transitions were good and we created chances.
“In the second half, the message was not to go back and to stay in control of the game until that space appeared again.
“Still, we faced a team that were fair winners and we must congratulate them. The team gave everything they had until [England’s] third goal.
“I didn’t take stock of the game after their third goal went in. We won the European Championship but only after drawing with them in the last minute.
“We’re two great teams, but they were also superior to us physically.”