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FIFA World Cup 2022: Spanish Tiki-Taka masterclass crushes Costa Rica 7-0 in Group E match

Spain v Costa Rica, FIFA World Cup 2022: Spain thrashed Costa Rica 7-0 in their opening match of the tournament on Wednesday. The 2010 winners Spain registered their biggest ever win at a World Cup.

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Gavi celebrates after scoring for Spain at the World Cup. (AP Photo)

In Short

  • Dani Olmo scored Spain's 100th goal at the World Cup
  • Gavi became youngest goal-scorer for Spain at World Cup
  • Ferran Torres netted twice for Spain before getting off

By Priya Nagi: Luis Enrique has made a statement that his Spain have arrived at the FIFA World Cup 2022. A Spanish Tiki-Taka masterclass crushed Costa Rica 7-0 in the Group E match on Wednesday, November 23.

Dani Olmo gave Spain an early lead in the 11th minute after a beautiful pass by Gavi, which the forward netted over Costa Rica goalkeeper Keylor Navas. 11 minutes later, Marco Asensio doubled the lead with his first-time shot before a penalty stroke from Ferran Torres made it 3-0 at half-time.

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The first-half was a delight for the connoisseur, with Spain taking the ball and passing the ball movement at the Al Thumama Stadium. The Spanish outfield put Costa Rica to sleep with their mind-boggling 537 passes in front of Costa's 73. Along the way, Spain became the first team since 1966 to complete 500 passes in the first half of a FIFA World Cup match.

Spain could have added one more before going into half-time when Busquets' backheel found the 19-year-old Pedri took a shot but splashed it wide of the post. Torres made up for it in the second half with the help of Gavi. The 18-year-old Gavi provided a sharp cutback and Torres scored it past the Costa Rica goalkeeper.

With Gavi and Pedri both starting in the match, Spain became the first European side to name two teenagers in their starting XI in a World Cup match since Bulgaria (Jechev and Sokolov) against England in 1962. The Spanish side scripted more history, Gavi (18 years and 110 days) becoming the youngest player to play for Spain in a major international tournament in the history of the Spanish football team.

Spanish team celebrating during the World Cup match against Costa Rica. (AP Photo)

Soon, Enrique decided that Torres would not complete a hat-trick as he was replaced by Alvaro Morata. The goals galore continued as Gavi joined the party in the 74th minute and became Spain's youngest goalscorer at the World Cup.

Alejandro Balde displayed a thrilling run infield and slid the ball through to the Costa Rica goalkeeper. Navas dived at his feet but Morata got the possession and passed it to Gavi, who flicked a beautiful volley into the bottom corner. Carlos Soler and Morata ensured Spain completed the match with their biggest ever win in their World Cup history.