'Perfect' start for Spain boss

Sports | 13 Sep 2018

Luis Enrique described it as the perfect start after Spain backed up their win over England with a 6-0 demolition of Croatia.

The hosts were three up at half-time against the World Cup runners-up in Elche thanks to Marco Asensio's two long-range strikes, the second going in off goalkeeper Lovre Kalinic, and an early header from Saul Niguez. Asensio then laid on three more goals in the second half as Rodrigo Moreno, Sergio Ramos and Isco completed a statement victory.

Luis Enrique took charge after the humiliating exit to Russia at the World Cup had left Spain doubting the possession game that won them three consecutive major tournaments between 2008 and 2012. He promised evolution, not revolution, and while his team still dominated possession, they were faster, more direct and less predictable.

Beating two of the World Cup's semi-finalists in four days leaves Spain top of League A's Group Two in the Nations League. But, perhaps more importantly, it should also give the players belief in Luis Enrique's methods.

"It would be very easy to say that this is my Spain, generating many chances and conceding few goals, but the truth is that I am changing things very fast," Luis Enrique said.

Comparisons between the performance against Croatia and the World Cup "don't make sense," he added.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

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