Spanish media reacts to exit

The Spanish sports media have been reacting to the champions’ World Cup exit, with Juanma Trueba writing in AS that Spain looked "unrecognisable and ordinary looking".

Last Updated: 19/06/14 at 09:58 Post Comment

Spain: Champions are out of the World Cup after losing their first two games

Spain: Champions are out of the World Cup after losing their first two games

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The newspapers in Spain pulled no punches in their criticism of the national side, who were eliminated from this year’s tournament after their 2-0 defeat to Chile.

After being routed 5-1 by Holland in their opening fixture, it means Spain will now play a dead rubber against Australia – who are also out – before flying home.

“As endings go, this was a particularly horrible one,” wrote Trueba.“But we knew that it had to come some day. Nevertheless, we could never have imagined it would be so pitiful and the Spain side so unrecognisable and ordinary-looking.

“Spain is out and their punishment is the humiliation of having to play next Monday against Australia in the game of shame between the first two teams eliminated from the championship."

In Mundo Deportivo, Manel Bruna wrote: “It is a total disaster that the World Cup favourites go out of the back door and generates many questions for the future. We should thank this group but the players are responsible and they became a caricature of Spain at this tournament.”

The tone was especially scathing in Super Deporte, who described the exit as "an unmitigated debacle". They went on to say: “The title defence has lasted 180 minutes in Brazil 2014, eliminated in the first phase as an insignificant team beaten 5-1 by Holland and 2-0 by Chile.”

Others, though, were more reflective in their appraisal of Spain’s exit, choosing instead to focus on the great things the team has achieved in winning three major international tournaments.

Sam Marsden in Sport wrote: “Fatigued, drained and almost unacquainted, Spain's World Cup defence was ended on Wednesday night before it ever had the chance to get going.

“The reaction that will follow will be over the top, of that you can be sure, but let's hope that six years of Spanish dominance is not forgotten in the wake of their elimination. The players don't deserve that.”

El Mundo was similarly respectful, saying: "Spain reached the end of the most beautiful time in its history. There was no better land in which to do it.

“Two European Championships and the World Cup after a tyrannical reign, the squad is buried at the Maracana with the same noise of a giant collapsing.”

Javier Estepa, writing in Marca, focused the debate on Spain’s controversial decision to include Atletico Madrid striker Diego Costa in their squad for the tournament.

Costa, who was born in Lagarto, Brazil, started both Spain’s group games but failed to register a shot on target in either.

“Vicente del Bosque put his faith in Diego Costa to be one of his team's lethal weapons,” wrote Estepa. “Although many had their hopes pinned on the Spanish-Brazilian player, he failed to live up to those expectations, despite being a starter against the Netherlands and Chile.”

Generally, the mood was one of a glorious era coming to an end and it was perfectly summed up by El Correo.

“Whenever a team that dominates falls,” they wrote, “as happened with (Eddie) Merckx and (Miguel) Indurain in cycling, a new vista is opened to everyone."

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