Spain held to frustrating draw in Portugal
Spain’s first game of this October international break threw up a scoreless draw with neighbours Portugal at Sporting CP’s Estadio Jose Alvalade on Wednesday evening.
Luis Enrique’s side dominated the ball but didn’t managed to carve out quite as many chances as their coach would have liked to see and, as a result,
failed to score in a game for the first time since losing 2-0 to Italy at the 2016 European Championship in France.Despite having less of the possession,
Portugal had some big chances to win the game,
hitting the bar twice and seeing Joao Felix miss a glaring opportunity from right in front of the goal in the dying minutes of the game.Luis Enrique opted for an experimental XI to start with,
deploying the out of form Kepa Arrizabalaga in goal behind a central defensive pairing of Eric Garcia and Diego Llorente,
while Dani Olmo, Rodrigo Moreno and Gerard Moreno led the line of attack.Spain started brightly but failed to capitalise on their superiority before things evened out as half time drew near.
The highlights of the evening for Spain were Levante’s Jose Campana and Wolves’ Adama Traore getting minutes.Sergio Ramos was introduced late on for his 173rd Spain cap,
but only after Cristiano Ronaldo had been withdrawn for Portugal to be replaced by Joao Felix.The Real Madrid and Spain captain did have a chance to score himself,
as he tends to, but after climbing highest in the box his headed effort went over the crossbar.Joao Felix should have ended the game with a late winner but,
after a Nelson Semedo header, the Atletico Madrid forward somehow failed to make proper contact with the ball and missed what should have been a certain goal.