Alvaro Morata personified the Spain Euro 2020 experience. In the semifinal against Italy, Morata put the finishing touches to an excellently constructed goal, rewarding his team for their tactical nuances.
Subsequently, he missed what turned out to be the decisive spot-kick in the ensuing shootout, limiting an entire nation’s imagination to what could’ve been, rather than what did. So close to fulfillment, yet so far.
— UEFA EURO 2020 (@EURO2020) July 6, 2021
Spain wasn’t supposed to be in the semifinals. Since their last tournament win in 2012, La Roja has been eyed as a team very much in transition.
Slowly, the old guard has been shifted and replaced by a new generation – molded by the Spanish school of thought but not bound to it.
Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba are the last remnants of those dominating Spanish teams of yesteryear, and questions over their longevity will be asked sooner or later.
For now, Luis Enrique, Busquets, Alba, and Spain can rest easy following a tournament in which they performed above expectations.
For the first time since 2012, La Roja felt close to a finished article, not one in development. The question which needs to be asked here, though, is what does the future hold for them?