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Spain 2 England 0 February 12, 2009

Posted by Daniel Martin in General.

Article retrieved from The Times Online

Spain spoil David Beckham’s night

Spain 2 England 0

Fabio Capello conceded that England had been taught a footballing lesson in a 2-0 defeat by Spain last night that brought their eight-match unbeaten run to an abrupt end.

España venció a Inglaterra

Goals from David Villa and Fernando Llorente secured a deserved victory for the European champions in a match notable for David Beckham equalling Bobby Moore’s England record for an outfield player of 108 caps. But the long-term significance will be the reminder of how much Capello’s team need to improve if they are to emerge as genuine challengers at next year’s World Cup.

Capello admitted as much after the second defeat of his reign, and first for 11 months, revealing that the quality of Spain’s passing and movement had been an eye-opener for many of his players.

“We can do better,” Capello said. “The first goal was a present. We played so-so, but for me it’s important for the players to understand what level they need to play.

“We can’t play the same style as Spain, but we have to play with our style with the players that we have at this time. Spain played well because it’s the same team that won the Euros. They played with memory. For me, it was an important test for a lot of players.

“I think that this game was very important for us. We played against one of the best teams in the world and we know the difficulties we met during the game. We now understand a lot of things about my team and about the opponents. I learnt a lot of things for the next game we have to play for World Cup qualification.

“I’m not happy because we lost, but I understand a lot for the future. I understand when you play against one team who play with the style of Spain, and this is very important for the future. We have to do this when we come up against sides like this. I learnt a lot.”

Capello praised Beckham for reaching such a significant milestone, although he rather soured the occasion by getting himself booked. Beckham was introduced as a half-time substitute for Stewart Downing and put in a typically wholehearted performance but was cautioned in stoppage time for protesting too vigorously against a free kick awarded for a foul by Glen Johnson.

“I’m happy for David, it’s an important record, but I think he would be disappointed to have equalled the record and lost the game,” Capello said.



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