Live Commentary: Spain 3-0 Netherlands - as it happened

Spain players celebrate after Alvaro Morata scored the only goal of the match against Germany on June 9, 2013
© AP Photos
Sports Mole's live coverage of the European Under-21 Championship clash between Spain and the Netherlands.

Hello, and welcome to Sports Mole's coverage of the European Under-21 Championship clash between Spain and the Netherlands.

Both sides have already qualified for the semi-final stage of the competition after winning their opening two games of the tournament.

However, today's fixture is expected to be a tight encounter, with both teams being regarded as favourites to contest the final next Tuesday.

Spain have relied on two late Alvaro Morata goals to secure back-to-back victories, while the Netherlands have been in free-scoring form, netting eight goals against Germany and Russia respectively.

Please note, this game is due to kickoff at 5pm.

4.31pmHello, and welcome to Sports Mole's coverage of the European Under-21 Championship clash between Spain and the Netherlands.

4.34pmToday's game represents the concluding fixture in Group B, with the winners of this afternoon's encounter moving to first place in the group and moving on to a semi-final tie with Norway, while the runners-up will face Italy.

4.38pmBoth Spain and the Netherlands possess players in their ranks that are either already playing for one of Europe's elite sides, or at the very least, have been linked with a big-money move this summer. I'm sure there will be scouts from around the continent with eyes on a few potential signings this afternoon.

4.39pmFull team news to follow...

4.41pmSPAIN XI: De Gea; Carvajal, Alvaro Gonzalez, Inigo Martinez, Nacho; Camacho, Thiago, Isco; Sarabia, Morata, Muniain

4.42pmNETHERLANDS XI: Bizot; Leerdam, Van der Hoom, Nuytinck, Van Aanholt; Clasie, Fer, Trindade de Vilhena; Jozefroon, Hoesen, Depay

4.45pmWith their place in the semi-finals assured, both teams have made changes to their starting lineup, but there is still an array of talent on show. Spain are captained by Barcelona midfielder Thiago Alcantara, who is joined in midfielder by Isco, who has been linked with Manchester City. Alvaro Morata is also handed a start.

4.49pmThe Netherlands have left the likes of Luuk de Jong and Kevin Strootman on the bench as coach Cor Pot completely changes the side that started the 5-1 win over Russia, with Chelsea's Patrick van Aanholt featuring at left-back.

4.52pmSpain have had the better of the recent meetings between the two teams, coming out on top in four of their last five encounters. Despite the free-scoring form of the Dutch, they will be favourites to extend that run today.

4.56pmThe players are in the tunnel, waiting to make their entrance at the HaMoshava Stadium. Spain are in their familiar red and yellow shirts, while the Netherlands are in their changed colours of red, white and blue.

0 minSpain have got us underway in Israel.

2 minSpain have held onto the ball for the opening 90 seconds, but they have yet to leave their own half. The Netherlands look like they are intent on pressing their opponents when they have the ball.

5 minThere's a healthy crowd inside the three-sided stadium, but there isn't much in terms of atmosphere. Maybe they are waiting for something significant to happen in the game, because it is being played at a slow pace so far.

9 minI know it is early days, but it has been a complete stalemate so far. Both teams seem happy to retain possession in their own half. Spain are frustrated when Morata gets through on goal, but the game had already been stopped for a foul on Sarabia.

10 minSHOT! From the resulting free-kick, Alcantara tried his luck from 40 yards, but his effort was easily saved by Marco Bizot.

13 minThis is a bit better from Spain, who force a couple of corners after some impressive touches from Alcantara. However, the Netherlands manage to deal with both set-pieces, and it remains 0-0.

17 minThe Netherlands aren't really getting a look-in. They are trying to force things with a few quick exchanges outside of the Spain penalty area, but they are quickly being dispossessed.

20 minThat's a wasted opportunity for Spain, who engineered Alcantara into some space, but his intended pass to Muniain was stolen by Morata and the move lost its momentum.

21 minSHOT! Up the other end, the Netherlands finally threaten De Gea's goal. A long through ball found Jozefzoon, but his lob cleared the Manchester United stopper's goal by some distance. They can at least take some encouragement from that move.

23 minCLOSE! Morata nearly makes up for the mis-communication several minutes ago, with a fine curling effort that was only a yard away from the top corner. The Real Madrid forward is forging a good reputation for himself at this tournament.

25 minGOAL! Spain 1-0 Netherlands (Morata)

27 minWhat was I saying about Morata? The 20-year-old nets his third goal in three games, but the praise will go to teammate Sarabia, who was extremely unselfish in cutting the ball across the six-yard box to the awaiting Morata. There is no doubt that they deserved that goal.

29 minThe Netherlands are positive in their reply to going a goal behind, with Jozefzoon forcing a corner after an enterprising break down the right. The corner is comfortably cleared, but they do have a free-kick 40 yards out.

30 minMISS! Oh dear! That is a shocking miss from Van Der Hoorn. The free-kick deflected off a couple of players before finding the Dutchman six yards out, but he could only fire the ball straight at De Gea.

32 minGOAL! Spain 2-0 Netherlands (Isco)

32 minThat could be that, and we are only 32 minutes into this match. Muniain plays a pin-point through ball into the stride of the Malaga playmaker, who shows impeccable composure in lifting the ball over the goalkeeper from 12 yards. Spain have been a joy to watch so far.

37 minSpain look in total control of this match that there might not be much benefit in Cor Pot making any changes to the Netherlands. You would expect him to completely rotate his team on Saturday, so would he really want to risk one of his key players in a match they are likely to lose anyway?

41 minIf Isco ends up moving to Manchester City, he could light up the Etihad Stadium next season. He is sweeping past players at will, and his reverse pass nearly leads to goal number three for Spain. The strength-in-depth of Spain's midfield options is scary.

44 minAs we approach half-time, it has turned into a keep-ball session for Spain. To be fair to the Netherlands, they are making every effort to reclaim possession, but they aren't getting a sniff.

45 minHALF-TIME: Spain 2-0 Netherlands

5.48pmWe have no injury-time at all at the HaMoshava Stadium, and Spain go into the break with a two-goal advantage thanks to goals from Alvaro Morata and Isco. In truth, it could have been more for Julen Lopetegui's men, but they will be thankful to goalkeeper David de Gea for keeping Netherlands out at the other end.

5.51pmMike van der Hoorn will be ruing the opportunity that he had just before Spain's second goal. He only had to lift the ball into the net, and his side would have been level. It would have meant a completely different game, but Spain are mow strong favourites to hang on to their lead and move through to a semi-final date with Norway.

5.56pmI wouldn't be at all surprised to see Lopetegui make a couple of alterations to his side after the break. He will be surely wanting to protect the likes of Alcantara and Isco, while Morata may have earned himself a start in the last four.

5.59pmIn the other game in Group B, Germany are currently being held by Russia. It is a relatively meaningless match for both sides, but I suspect a talented German team will be keen to return home with a win to their name.

46 minThe Netherlands get us back underway in the second half.

47 minThis looks like a bit of a blow for Spain. Camacho has gone down holding his ankle, and I would be surprised if he is able to continue. The Malaga player is back on after treatment, but he is moving rather gingerly.

51 minThe Netherlands have started the second half a lot better than they ended the first, but they are struggling to find a teammate with their final ball. Spain nearly hit them on the break when a long ball releases Sarabia, but he fails to find Morata, who was waiting by the penalty spot.

52 minSUBSTITUTION! That's the end of the game for Camacho, who has failed to shake off his ankle niggle, and he is replaced by Asier Illarramendi.

56 minBOOKING! It has taken Illarramendi all of four minutes to pick up a yellow card, but a couple of fouls in succession.

57 minSAVE! That is a phenomenal shot from Memphis, but it is an even better save from De Gea. The Dutch striker struck a free-kick from 35 yards out, and just as it appears to be heading for the top corner, De Gea tipped the ball onto the crossbar.

61 minThe Netherlands have been the better side since the interval, but they are failing to make their pressure count, with Memphis failing to nod the ball home from six yards out. I thought the game was as good as over after Spain's first-half display but they have taken their foot off the gas in the last 15 minutes.

62 minSUBSTITUTION! Isco is withdrawn by Spain, with Alvaro Vasquez entering the action. The Getafe striker scored five goals during his country's qualifying campaign.

65 minSAVE! That's a fabulous breakaway from Spain, Illarramendi sending Vasquez clear, but Bizot makes a stunning one-handed save to keep the score at 2-0. From the resulting corner, Illarramendi's volley was cleared off the luine.

70 minSUBSTITUTION! The Netherlands make their first change of the game, with Adam Mager being brought on in Tonny Trindade de Vilhena

72 minSHOT! Sarabia has been arguably Spain's best player this afternoon and once again, he looks creative in setting up Carvajal, but the defender's curling effort just evades the far post. Up the other end, Maher slices a volley wide from 12 yards, when he perhaps should have done better.

76 minIt's a little surprising that Lopetegui hasn't taken Alcantara off yet. It seems a bit pointless for his captain to be still featuring in this game. The Netherlands are still pushing for a goal, but they aren't offering as much threat as they did 10 minutes ago.

79 minSUBSTITUTION! Ah, here we are. Alcantara is now being withdrawn by his coach. He has been replaced by Barcelona teammate Marc Muniesa, who is predominantly a defender.

90+1 minThat's another excellent goal from Spain, and once again, Sarabia is involved. He breaks down the left-hand side of the penalty area, before firing the ball across goal for Vasquez to score. We have three minutes of injury-time.

86 minI think we can say now that the semi-final lineup is complete, with Spain set to face Norway, and the Netherlands to play Italy. Based on today's performance, it is difficult to see anyone preventing Spain from picking up the trophy on Tuesday.

88 minI don't expect the referee to be adding much time on once the clock hits 90 minutes. The match has flowed with very few stoppages. It has almost felt like a friendly, with just the one booking throughout the match.

89 minSAVE! De Gea has looked superb during this game, and he pulls off his third world-class stop of the match with a one-handed save from Adam Maher, which hit the post.

90 minGOAL! Spain 3-0 Netherlands (Vasquez)

90+1 minThat's another excellent goal from Spain, and once again, Sarabia is involved. He breaks down the left-hand side of the penalty area, before firing the ball across goal for Vasquez to score. We have three minutes of injury-time.

90+3 minFULL-TIME: Spain 3-0 Netherlands

6.51pmThat's the end of the game in Israel, and Spain have comfortably defeated the Netherlands to top Group B.

6.53pmIt was a commanding performance from Julen Lopetegui's men, who barely had to break sweat to overcome their opponents. Pablo Sarabia was one of the stars of the show, setting up two of his team's goals, while Alcantara and Isco also impressed.

6.55pmAs for the Netherlands, their much-changed team struggled to cope with the quality that Spain possessed, but they will go into the semi-finals confident that their returning players can make an impact in the semi-finals.

6.57pmThat's all from Sports Mole today, but be sure to join us again for the semi-finals, which take place on Saturday. Goodbye for now.

Spain players celebrate after Alvaro Morata scored the only goal of the match against Germany on June 9, 2013
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