Spain finished Group B of the 2017 Under-21 European Chamsionship with the maximum amount of points on Friday, courtesy of a simple 1-0 win over Serbia.
Denis Suarez gave La Roja a deserved lead in the first half, and when Serbia’s Uros Djurdjevic was sent off for a second bookable offence, the win seemed secure.
Spain dominated after the break, and Serbia never came close to an equaliser.
As shared by Scouted Football, Spain were happy to rest a bunch of starters ahead of the knockout stages. The team still included stars like Inaki Williams and Mikel Oyarzabal, however.
La Roja had little left to play for and it showed early, as Serbia made a fast start and nearly took the lead through Milos Veljkovic. The defender fired over after a dangerous corner and really should have done better.
On the other side of the pitch, Williams used his pace to create a first opening, but the Serbian defenders returned just in time. Djurdjevic put goalkeeper Pau Lopez to work for the first time, but the stopper was hardly troubled.
Carlos Soler perhaps should have beaten goalkeeper Filip Manojlovic after a clever passing move, before Djurdjevic grabbed his first booking for a nasty tackle on Jose Luis Gaya. Meanwhile, Robbie Dunne of AS
Spain improved as the half wore on and a goal seemed inevitable inside the first 45 minutes. It was Suarez who came through after lovely interplay between Williams and Alvaro Odriozola, with the latter grabbing the assist.
Soler missed a golden opportunity to double the lead just two minutes after the opener, and Djurdjevic gifted all momentum to the Spaniards shortly before half-time, getting himself sent off for an elbow on Mikel Merino. While the forward was furious with the decision, replays showed the official was correct to send him off.
Suarez almost doubled his tally early in the second half, but goalkeeper Manojlovic, who gave away the chance, redeemed himself with the save.
La Roja easily controlled the ball, with Serbia sitting deep, and Williams headed a great chance wide after good work from Oyarzabal.
Nemanja Maksimovic fired a rare chance at Lopez, but the second half was one-way traffic. Manojlovic made a spectacular save to deny Mayoral, but there would be no more goals, as Spain cruised to a win.