Spain 1-1 Poland Sid Lowe’s match report has landed, so I’ll be off. Thanks for your company and emails – goodnight!
Robert Lewandowski’s masterful header has kept Poland in the tournament. They deserved a point against a Spain side who again flattered to deceive and looked a bit rudderless. Alvaro Morata had given them the lead, and Gerard Moreno hit the post with a penalty straight after Lewandowski’s goal, but that aside they struggled to create clear chances. If they don’t beat Slovakia on Wednesday, they could go out at the group stage.
90+4 min Rodri takes a yellow card with a tactical foul on Kozlowski, who nicked the ball on the edge of the area and was away on the counter.
90+4 min “Safe safe safe,” says the BBC co-commentator Danny Murphy in reference to Spain’s passing. If that isn’t a sly plea to join Goldie Lookin’ Chain, I don’t know what is.
90+1 min “Pedri has been something of a mystery: beautifully accomplished, not a pass which doesn’t find its mark, as progressive as the circumstances allow, but discreet to the point of ineffectiveness,” says Charles Antaki. “Iniesta without, if one can use the word with Iniesta, the venom.”
That’s a great point, although don’t forget that Iniesta wasn’t oozing venom at 18. He went to the venom level at maybe 21 or 22.
90 min The 17-year-old Kozlowski runs at a backpedalling defence, with options either side, but then a poor touch ends the move. That was half a chance for Poland.
90 min Five minutes of added time. Spain still aren’t moving the ball quickly enough.
85 min Two more changes for Poland: Karol Linetty and Pawel Dawidowicz replace Jan Bednarek and Jakub Moder.
84 min: Great save by Szczesny! Alba curled a gorgeous pass into the area towards Sarabia. He chested it square to Morata, who shot was smothered desperately by Szczesny and then half cleared by Bednarek. It went to Torres, who curled over from the edge of the area.
83 min If it stays like this, Spain will need at least a draw against Slovakia, and probably a win, to qualify for the knockout stages.
81 min Pau Torres is booked for elbowing Lewandowski as they jumped for a high ball. We’ve just seen a replay of that Morata fall; that could have gone either way on the field, but again it wasn’t a clear and obvious error so VAR were right not get involved.
80 min Torres feeds a cross into Morata, back to goal on the six-yard line. He tries to turn and goes down – was that a foul by Bednarek – and the danger is cleared. Moments later, Rodri whistles a half-volley straight at Szczesny from 18 yards. It was a sweet strike with his left foot.
79 min Fabian Ruiz pushes the ball towards Morata in the area. It’s a poor pass that runs towards Szczesny… but then Ferran Torres appears from nowhere to poke the ball away from him. That leads to an impromptu scramble on the six-yard line until Szczesny grabs the ball.
77 min Lewandowski charges forward from the halfway line and plays the ball through to Frankowski in the inside-right channel. He tries to return it to Lewandowski, who is desperate to get another chance, but the pass is blocked.
74 min “To my mind, that penalty is exactly what VAR is for,” says Matt Dony. “The referee would naturally have followed the ball, and so missed Moder standing on Moreno’s ankle well after the ball had gone. Danny Murphy gave it the old ‘Not all contact is a foul’, but standing on someone’s ankle while getting nowhere near the ball would be given anywhere else on the pitch (as the cliche goes). Was it the most heinous foul in the world? No. But it was still a foul, and VAR gave the ref a chance to evaluate it. (Saying that, as someone who learnt the game playing in defence, had that kind of thing been given more consistently, I would have given away a LOT of penalties.)”
Ugh, not for me, though I do see your point.
73 min: Chance for Torres! Spain work the ball nicely across the field to Marcos Llorente on the right. He stands up a cross that is headed wide of the near post by Torres, 10 yards out. That was quite a tricky chance because there no was pace on the ball.
72 min Spain are starting to put Poland under pressure again. Sarabia’s inswinging free-kick is punched away by Szczesny, a more convincing piece of goalkeeping than the last.
69 min A dangerous corner from Sarabia is missed by Szczesny, who punches fresh air with both hands, and hits the arm of the unsighted Laporte. Bednarek then boots it away.
67 min A double change for Spain: Fabian Ruiz and Pablo Sarabia replace Gerard Moreno and Koke. And For Poland, Przemyslaw Frankowski comes on for Karol Swiderski.
66 min If it stays like this, the group will read: Sweden 4, Slovakia 3, Spain 2, Poland 1.
65 min Morata makes a good run through the inside-right channel and hits a decent cross shot that is pushed round the far post by Szczesny.
64 min “Penalty given was precisely the same as the one that was given against Alaba last week,” says Gene Salorio. “So consistent.”
But not against the Scotland defender whose name I forget last night.