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FIFA World Cup European Qualifying

Carlos Belmonte (ATT 17,500) 15th October 2013 - Kick off 20:00 Ref: F Meyer

Spain Spain vs Georgia Georgia

Spain 2

A Negredo (26)
J Mata (61)

ft

Georgia 0

World Cup qualifiers: Holders Spain secured their passage with a 2-0 win over Georgia

Last Updated: 15/10/13 11:47pm

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Andres Iniesta finds himself surrounded

Andres Iniesta finds himself surrounded

Holders Spain ensured they would be in Brazil next year to defend their World Cup title as goals from Alvaro Negredo and Juan Mata earned them a 2-0 victory over Georgia in Albacete.

Spain only needed a draw to ensure they finished top of Group I ahead of France and Negredo's fourth goal in his last five appearances for his country gave La Roja a half-time lead before substitute Mata sealed the win just after the hour.

Spain coach Vicente del Bosque rang the changes following Friday's nervy 2-1 win over Belarus with only five players - Barcelona quartet Xavi, Pedro, Sergio Busquets and Gerard Pique plus Real Madrid defender Sergio Ramos - keeping their starting spots.

Among those to come in were locally-born Andres Iniesta, debutant left-back Alberto Moreno and Negredo up front, and it was the Manchester City striker who again showed his international class with an impressive showing.

Pedro was the biggest early threat to the visiting goal, drawing two stops out of Georgia goalkeeper Giorgi Loria while also firing another chance over, but then Negredo claimed centre-stage.

He had a shot blocked by Gia Grigalava, drilled a second effort just wide before drawing a brilliant save out of Loria in the 20th minute with an acrobatic overhead kick.

Negredo might have felt he deserved a goal for that effort, but he need not have worried as five minutes later he did get his name on the scoresheet as he stole in at the near post to stab home Iniesta's volleyed cut-back.

That was just what Spain would have wanted to prevent the tension building, but they then had to weather a brief Georgia storm immediately after Negredo's goal which saw the recalled Iker Casillas save from Jaba Kankava and Nikoloz Gelashvili before Zhano Ananidze fired over.

The save from Gelashvili showed the veteran Real Madrid keeper at his best and, with the danger averted, normal service was resumed with Spain back on the attack and Negredo again in the thick of things.

He came within inches of making it 2-0 in the 40th minute with a close-range shot that struck the post.

The reigning world and European champions picked up where they left off in the second half, with Iniesta, Negredo and Jesus Navas trying their luck before substitute Mata made an instant impact by doubling Spain's lead in the 61st minute.

The Chelsea player had only been on the pitch four minutes after replacing Pedro when he pounced on a loose ball in the area to slam a left-footed shot past Loria.

That proved to be the end of the scoring with Spain relatively untroubled by Georgia in the closing stages as they sealed their passage to Brazil next summer.

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Matches

  • FIFA World Cup European Qualifying

    Tue 15th Oct - Group E
    Tue 15th Oct - Group F
    Tue 15th Oct - Group G
    • Greece
      2 - 0
      Liechtenstein
      bet
      TV
    • Lithuania
      0 - 1
      Bos & Herz
      bet
      TV
    • Latvia
      2 - 2
      Slovakia
      bet
      TV
    Tue 15th Oct - Group D
    Tue 15th Oct - Group B
    Tue 15th Oct - Group A
    Tue 15th Oct - Group C
    • Faroe Islands
      0 - 3
      Austria
      bet
      TV
    • Rep Ireland
      3 - 1
      Kazakhstan
      bet
      TV
    • Sweden
      3 - 5
      Germany
      bet
      TV
    Tue 15th Oct - Group H
    Tue 15th Oct - Group I

Tables

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group A

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Belgium 10 26
2 Croatia 10 17
3 Serbia 10 14
4 Scotland 10 11
5 Wales 10 10
6 Macedonia 10 7

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group B

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Italy 10 22
2 Denmark 10 16
3 Czech Republic 10 15
4 Bulgaria 10 13
5 Armenia 10 13
6 Malta 10 3

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group C

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Germany 10 28
2 Sweden 10 20
3 Austria 10 17
4 Republic of Ireland 10 14
5 Kazakhstan 10 5
6 Faroe Islands 10 1

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group D

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Netherlands 10 28
2 Romania 10 19
3 Hungary 10 17
4 Turkey 10 16
5 Estonia 10 7
6 Andorra 10 0

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group E

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Switzerland 10 24
2 Iceland 10 17
3 Slovenia 10 15
4 Norway 10 12
5 Albania 10 11
6 Cyprus 10 5

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group F

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Russia 10 22
2 Portugal 10 21
3 Israel 10 14
4 Azerbaijan 10 9
5 Northern Ireland 10 7
6 Luxembourg 10 6

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group G

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Bosnia and Herzegovina 10 25
2 Greece 10 25
3 Slovakia 10 13
4 Lithuania 10 11
5 Latvia 10 8
6 Liechtenstein 10 2

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group H

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 England 10 22
2 Ukraine 10 21
3 Montenegro 10 15
4 Poland 10 13
5 Moldova 10 11
6 San Marino 10 0

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying Group I

FIFA World Cup European Qualifying
Pos Team P Pts
1 Spain 8 20
2 France 8 17
3 Finland 8 9
4 Georgia 8 5
5 Belarus 8 4

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