Sport

Where is the Spanish magic?

Spain exit Olympics without scoring a goal

Thursday, August 02, 2012    

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MANCHESTER, England (AP) — Spain exited the men’s Olympic football tournament as the only team not to score a single goal in three matches after a 0-0 draw against Morocco yesterday in the final group round.

Forward Adrian Lopez had the best chances for Spain, hitting the post in the 31st minute and then wasting a good chance in the 69th when he was clear on goal. Lopez latched on to a throughball, but then glanced at the linesman to see whether he was offside instead of shooting. When the official kept his flag down, Lopez dribbled slowly toward goal and sent a weak shot wide.

It exemplified the sloppiness of Spain’s play at times and a lack of concentration — not only during the match, but over the course of the tournament.

Spain, who finished last in Group D, were already eliminated from the tournament after losing 0-1 in their first two matches against Japan and Honduras. Morocco also go home after finishing third in Group D.

The Spaniards opened yesterday’s match with bright play, combining well with quick touch passing and advancing into dangerous areas.

But Morocco pressed forward too and had chances to win the match.

A torrential downpour at half-time left the pitch waterlogged in some spots at the beginning of the interval. When players took shots, big splashes of water sprayed up.

But the drenched field didn’t slow down Morocco forward Noureddine Amrabat, who broke between two defenders as he charged through on goal in the 49th minute, but his shot flew just wide. He made another blazing run in the 55th, but his cross into the penalty area was kicked out for a corner. He then created Morocco’s best chance of the match, releasing midfielder Abdelaziz Barrada, whose close-range effort in the 60th minute was blocked by the goalkeeper’s knees and sent out for a corner.

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