Alvaro Morata bagged a brace as reigning European Champions Spain crushed Turkey 3-0 to qualify for the Round of 16.
Reigning European Champions Spain scraped a 1-0 opening win over the Czech Republic with a late Gerard Pique header, so confidence wasn’t at the maximum in Nice. Turkey were beaten by a Luka Modric volley for Croatia, but Arda Turan came face to face with many Barcelona teammates.
Turkey’s only competitive victory over Spain was 1-0 in a 1954 World Cup qualifier. Sergio Ramos got himself booked within the opening 60 seconds and an Alvaro Morata snapshot was beaten round the post, while Hakan Balta anticipated the Juventus striker on a Jordi Alba cross and clipped his own upright.
Hakan Calhanoglu’s free kick sailed over and Nolito turned a couple of promising chances wide, but Morata broke the deadlock with a looping header from Nolito’s assist.
Mere moments later Nolito had his name on the scoresheet too, as Cesc Fabregas’ ball over the top was only deflected by Mehmet Topal for the well-taken volley. This was the first time since the 1954 World Cup that Turkey had conceded two goals in the first half during a major tournament.
Straight after the restart, Alba generously set up a simple tap-in for Morata’s second of the game, meaning Spain were the first side to score three goals at Euro 2016. However, Alba appeared to be offside in the build-up.
Morata almost completed a hat-trick two minutes later, his diving header wide of the far post, while Burak Yilmaz and David Silva fired good chances wide.
It was largely one-way traffic and Bruno Soriano’s effort was palmed round the post.
Spain 3-0 Turkey
Morata 34, 48 (S), Nolito 37 (S)
Spain: De Gea; Juanfran, Pique, Ramos, Alba (Azpilicueta 81); Fabregas (Koke 70), Busquets, Iniesta; David Silva (Bruno Soriano 64), Morata, Nolito
Turkey: Volkan; Gokhan Gonul, Mehmet Topal, Hakan Balta, Caner Erkin; Ozan Tufan, Selcuk Inan (Yunus Malli 70), Ozyakup (Olcay Sahan 62); Calhanoglu (Nuri Sahin 46), Burak Yilmaz, Arda Turan
Ref: Mazic (SRB)
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