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Qatar tribune


Spain thrashed Costa Rica 7-0 for their biggest ever winning margin at a World Cup, helped by two goals by Ferran Torres and strikes by five other players to send a resounding message to the rest of the teams in Qatar.

Spain have kicked off their Qatar 2022 campaign with the nation’s biggest-ever FIFA World Cup win, thrashing Costa Rica 7-0.

No fewer that six separate players found the net for La Roja, with Ferran Torres bagging a brace and Gavi becoming the third-youngest scorer in the tournament’s history.

Dani Olmo started the goal spree when he dinked the ball over Keylor Navas after 10 minutes, having shown wonderful close control to fashion the shooting position. Marco Asensio doubled the lead soon after, spinning the ball into the far corner from Jordi Alba’s pinpoint cross.

Torres joined the part with a penalty on the half-hour mark before adding a second early in the second half after capitalising on some confusion between Navas and Bryan Oviedo.

Gavi then made it five with a stunning strike, and if Costa Rica felt it couldn’t get any worse at this stage, they were to be sorely disappointed. Stoppage-time efforts from Carlos Soler and Alvaro Morata rubbed salt in Tico wounds and put a spectacular seal on a statement win for the Spanish.

Gavi had made history simply by taking to the field, becoming – at 18 years and 110 days – the youngest Spanish player ever to take part in the beautiful game’s greatest competition.

But when he found the net with the pick of his team’s seven goals – a volley executed with typically flawless technique – it left him behind only two men, Manuel Rosas (18 years, 93 days) and the great Pele (17 years, 239 days), on the World Cup’s all-time list of youngest marksmen.

There have only six more resounding World Cup wins than Spain’s demolition of Costa Rica. There have been three 8-0s, two 9-0s and the biggest victory of all: Hungary’s 10-0 trouncing of El Salvador in 1982.

Spain were mindful of the shock defeats suffered by Argentina and Group E rivals Germany against lower opposition in their opening matches and they tormented Costa Rica from the start, going 3-0 up after little more than 30 minutes. Dani Olmo got the goals flowing in the 11th minute when he exchanged passes with Gavi and chipped Costa Rica goalkeeper Keylor Navas. Ten minutes later, Marco Asensio timed a run into the box perfectly to connect powerfully with a Jordi Alba cross.

Torres stroked home his penalty in the 31st minute and the Barcelona winger claimed his second in the 54th when he took advantage of hesitant defending. Gavi, the youngest player to represent Spain at a World Cup, struck with a perfectly hit volley in the 74th minute before substitutes Carlos Soler and Alvaro Morata rounded off a totally one-sided encounter.

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