Spain will be seeded in the Euro 2024 Championship in Germany after beating Georgia 3-1 in its last match of the qualifying phase, played at the José Zorrilla stadium in Valladolid.
Le Normand scored 1-0 in the 4th minute, Kvaratskhelia tied in the 10th minute, Ferran Torres made it 2-1 in the 55th minute and Lochoshvili made it 3-1, with an own goal, in the 72nd minute.
Georgia put up a fight in the first half, protected by the safety of Mamardashvili, to tie at one goal in the first half, after reacting to Le Norman’s goal in the 4th minute, just four minutes later.
A defensive mistake by Luis de la Fuente’s team was taken advantage of by Chakvetadze to leave the ball to a fast Kvaratskhelia, who did not forgive, finishing perfectly against Unai Simón.
But if the first half of Spain-Georgia marked something, it was the injury to the incombustible Gavi, fundamental in the national team’s scheme. In the 21st minute he misplaced his knee and had to leave the field, amid more than obvious signs of pain.
In the second half, the Spanish tried to find more depth. In the end the reward came, after a good play on the left wing by Gayá, who crossed to find Ferrán Torres, whose header was impossible to stop.
Lamine El Yamal took to the Zorrilla pitch to play his fourth international match for Spain, replacing Ferrán Torres, who came out applauded by the fans.
Control remained with the Spanish team. And that pressure to score more goals and close the match translated into a failure in Lochoshvili’s clearance, which confused his goalkeeper, changing the trajectory of the ball, and ended up in the back of the Georgian net.
With that 3-1, the Spanish were closing ranks, to maintain the result and secure a victory that allows them to finish as leaders in a qualifying phase for Euro 2024 in which they only lost to Scotland.
Gavi leaves the field in tears after injuring his knee
Pablo Martín Páez ‘Gavi’ suffers a “major injury” to his right knee, as confirmed by the Spanish team’s doctors after the first examination of the Barcelona midfielder in the locker room at the José Zorrilla stadium in Valladolid, where they are facing Georgia in Nations League match.
Gavi had to leave the Spanish team’s match against Georgia after 23 minutes in tears. The knee in which he had received a tackle from behind, from which he seemed to have recovered, failed him when he tried to control a ball and he immediately felt the injury.
The first examination by the doctors carried out in the José Zorrilla home locker room confirms the severity felt by Gavi’s gestures of pain, scared by the sensations he had.
“Major injury to his right knee,” notes the first report from the Federation, pending tests in Barcelona that will determine the exact extent of the injury and the length of time the 19-year-old midfielder will be out.
The November match window leaves two injured in the Spanish team. In Cyprus Mikel Oyarzabal suffered a muscle problem last Thursday and in Valladolid the first injury of Gavi’s career occurred.
By Nadeem Faisal Baiga