Spain had a great start to their World Cup journey in Group E.
The 2010 champions thrashed Costa Rica by 7-0 scoreline at the Al-Thumama Stadium.
Three goals in the first half, four in the second half through Dani Olmo, Asensio, Ferran Torres, Gavi, Carlos Soler and Morata proved the Spanish side are ready to make a mark.
Coach Enrique will be delighted with what he saw.
For Costa Rica, qualification will now look like an uphill battle but they would have been targeting other games for points in Group E.
Elsewhere, 2014 winners, Germany were shockingly humbled by Japan with a 2-1 scoreline at the Khalifa International Stadium.
Before the turnaround, Ilkay Gundogan had given Germany the lead through a first-half penalty, before Japan substitute Ritsu Doan equalised 15 minutes from the end.
And the script was re-written by Japan’s super substitutes Takuma Asano, helping Samurai Blue to start well in Group E and with Spain next up for the Germans the pressure is well and truly on.
Earlier today, Morocco proved to be one of the most difficult sides to beat in world football of late.
They played a goalless draw against 2018 finalists, Croatia in Group F with chances at a premium at the Al Bayt Stadium; Ivan Perisic and Nikola Vlasic have the 2018 runner-up’s best opportunities while Achraf Hakimi goes close with free-kick in cagey stalemate.
It was the third goalless draw at this winter’s tournament in the space of 24 hours, and chances were at a premium with both defences on top. Indeed, three of the last four games at the World Cup have finished 0-0, more goalless draws than there were in the previous 73 matches in the competition combined.
There were just two attempts on target from both teams in a match played in searing desert heat despite the best efforts of the air-conditioned Al Bayt Stadium, 50km north of Doha.
However, Belgium wrapped up the day with a gaol victory over Canada who returned to the competition for the first time since 1986.
Batshuayi was the hero with his lone goal helping Martinez side to pick slim win.
Canada started well in the game. They were tidy in possession but their first World Cup finals game in 36 years ended in defeat as Michy Batshuayi’s assured first-half finish gave Belgium all three points in Group F after Alponso Davies had an early penalty saved by Thibaut Courtois.
Canada’s pace and energy caused Belgium no end of problems throughout the first half, and paid early dividends when Tajon Buchanan’s shot hit Yannick Carrasco’s left wrist and a penalty was awarded after a VAR review. Davies’ kick lacked both power and direction, however, and Courtois dived to his right to make the save.
Below is fixtures for Thursday
Cameroon vs Switzerland – 10am
Brazil vs Serbia – 7pm
Uruguay vs South Korea 1pm
Portugal vs Ghana – 4pm
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