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WCQ: Spain vs Kosovo

Spain vs Kosovo

When the first half with Spain had only 2 minutes to end, Khivcha Kvaratskhelia made 15,000 Georgia fans in the stands in joy when opening the score. That was the unexpected success of the team less than 102 ranks behind La Roja in the FIFA. 

Spain vs Kosovo

Not only solid defense, Georgia also broke the net of Spain and entered the second half with dreams of 3 complete points. However, the bravery of the 2010 World Cup champions and the talents of individuals were promptly revealed.

In the 56th minute, Ferran Torres equalized 1-1 for Spain after Jordi Alba's favorable cross. In the second minute of injury time, Dani Olmo made Georgia's home dumb with a spectacular long shot that sealed a 2-1 victory for the visitors. 

Outside the field, Coach Enrique celebrated enthusiastically. After the battle, he shared with reporters: “I am going to have a heart attack. Spain lost confidence and you can see it in the first half. "

“We conceded from a small defensive error and knew it was going to be complicated from that point. Our idea is to use more passes in and create more opportunities. "

“Spain has a deserved victory over Georgia. If people think no, I don't care. If you score a goal late, you are doing your best for the goal. ” 

After the "heart attack" victory over Georgia, Spain will want to win 3 points easier against Kosovo, the team is also rated as not at the same level. La Roja's main rival in the race for the first place with a direct ticket to the 2022 World Cup finals seems to be identified as Sweden.

The first two matches, Sweden both won and kept clean sheets against Georgia (1-0) and Kosovo (3-0). The Nordic team is leading Group B with 6 points, 2 points ahead of Spain. Therefore, Enrique's teachers and students will determine to win all remaining opponents after being held by Greece 1-1 at home and have not yet met Sweden. 

Spain currently has a series of 5 unbeaten matches, but only 2 of them are winning. However, when welcoming Kosovo, La Roja can be confident when their home record is very good. Except for the draw for Greece, they have won 9 previous matches in their homeland, scoring 34 goals and conceding only 2 goals.

Kosovo became the second team to lose to Sweden and also the second team to suffer the wrath of Zlatan Ibrahimovic. The 39-year-old general assisted Ludwig Augustinsson to open the scoring in the 12th minute before Alexander Isak and Sebastien Larsson helped the blue-yellow shirt team win 3-0.

A separate defeat at home field extended Kosovo's disappointment. In the UEFA Nations League 2020-21, this young team has only third place in the group stage, behind Greece and Slovenia and only above Moldova. They lost 3, drew 2 and won only 1 after 6 matches. 
Kosovo marched to Spain with a series of 8 away wins since overcoming Bulgaria 3-2 in June 2019. In the first World Cup qualifying campaign four years ago, the players arrived. from the Balkans ended up in failure. 

There, Kosovo, despite falling into a group with almost no big players with Iceland, Croatia, Ukraine, Turkey and Finland, is still ranked last with only 1 point after 10 matches. Currently, Bernard Challandes's army also needs miracles to attend the 2022 World Cup final.

There are still some quality names like Milot Rashica (Werder Bremen), Vedat Muriqi (Lazio) or Bersant Celina (Dijon), but the basic Kosovo force is uneven. It is difficult for them to compare with Spain, the team, despite the decline, is still above 97 places in the FIFA rankings. 

Coming up is an opportunity for Spain to show all they have and Kosovo can hardly avoid a severe defeat.