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U-21: Spain Beat Italy To Reach Final

Spanish players celebrate after Saul Niguez hat-trick during the UEFA European Under-21 Championship Semi-Final match between Spain and Italy at Krakow Stadium in Krakow, Poland on June 27, 2017 (Photo by Andrew Surma/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
U-21: Spain Beat Italy To Reach Final

Spain’s Under-21s blitzed their way into the Euro 2017 final by beating Italy by three goals to one in Tuesday nights semifinal in Krakow.

Atletico Madrid midfielder Saul Niguez struck a hat-trick and turned in a stellar display, and having scored in each of his two previous starts in the tournament — against Macedonia and Portugal — and opened the scoring early in the second half.

Dani Ceballos was also impressive for Spain. It was the Real Betis midfielder who set up Saul’s first goal and he was then on the receiving end of a challenge from Roberto Gagliardini, who picked up his second yellow card and was given his marching orders in the 58th minute.

Italy got back on level terms despite being down to 10 men almost immediately, though, when live-wire Federico Bernardeschi’s deflected effort deceived Kepa Arrizabalaga.

The drama continued and moments later Saul edged Spain back in front when he produced a stunning finish from 30 yards and he completed his hat-trick in the 74th minute when he caressed home a Marco Asensio pullback.

 

Albert Celades’ young Spain side will now meet Germany, who beat England on penalties earlier on Tuesday, in the final on Friday night.

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@alexclapham

An Englishman that is a coach and analyst within the youth academy of a Spanish club whilst studying Sports Coaching. Obsessive over the tactical concepts of the European game, Alex regularly attends games in the La Liga, Bundesliga and Serie A.

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