By RYAN TOLMICH
Coming off of a lackluster World Cup, Spain continued to disappoint in Thursday’s Euro 2016 qualifying action.
Just moments after finally netting a long-awaited equalizer, Spain conceded the game-winning goal to Slovakia’s Miroslav Stoch as Slovakia topped Spain 2-1.
The opening goal came in the 17th minute, as Spain goalkeeper Iker Casillas conceded yet another questionable goal, this time off a Juraj Kucka free kick. Spain controlled possession from that point forward, but failed to net an equalizer until substitute Paco Alcacer grabbed a goal in the 82nd minute.
Spain conceded just five minutes later, as Stoch got in on the break to earn his side all three points and hand Spain their first Euro qualifying loss since 2006.
Here’s a closer look at the rest of Thursday’s international results:
ENGLAND OVERWHELM UNDERDOGS SAN MARINO
Things went about as planned in a matchup between a team of amateurs and one consisting of the game’s elite.
England took care of minnows San Marino, 5-0, on Thursday behind goals from Phil Jagielka, Wayne Rooney, Danny Welbeck and Andros Townsend.
San Marino, whose only player professionally involved with the game is merely a youth coach, held England goalless for the game’s first 23 minutes before Jagielka started the England goal-fest. Finishes from Rooney, Welbeck and Townsend followed in the next 48 minutes before San Marino’s Alessandro Della Valle conceded an own goal in the 77th minute.
England will be back in action Sunday against Estonia, while San Marino takes on Switzerland on Oct. 14.
LATE PENALTY LEADS SLOVENIA OVER SWITZERLAND
It took 80 minutes for Slovenia to separate themselves from Switzerland, but the difference finally came from the penalty spot.
Slovenia’s Milivoje Novakovic converted a penalty in the 80th minute to earn his side a 1-0 victory over Switzerland.
The penalty was conceded by Swiss defender Djouro, allowing Novakovic to fire to goalkeeper Yan Sommer’s right for the game’s lone goal.
The victory sees Switzerland move atop Group E, where they are tied with England.
Ukraine 2 – 0 Belarus
Macedonia 3 – 2 Luxembourg
Slovakia 2 – 1 Spain
England 5 – 0 San Marino
Lithuania 1 – 0 Estonia
Slovenia 1 – 0 Switzerland
Lichtenstein 0 – 0 Montenegro
Austria 2 – 1 Moldova
Sweden 1 – 1 Russia
What did you think of Thursday’s results? How would you fix Spain’s current struggles? Is there anything you can take away from England’s victory? Which results surprised you?
Share your thoughts below.