World and European Champions Spain booked their spot in the Quarter-finals of Euro 2012 with a hard earned 1-0 victory against a tough Croatian side in Gdansk on Monday. Spain dominated the contest in terms of possession and chances, but needed to wait until the 88th minute to score the winner as substitute Jesus Navas tapped the ball into an empty net to round off a move created in Barcelona thanks to some excellent play by Cesc Fabregas and Andres Iniesta. The other Group C match tonight saw Italy register a comfortable 2-0 win against Ireland to take second place, thereby sending Croatia crashing out of the tournament. The Croats did not see enough of the ball today, and despite having some excellent chances, were second best for most of the contest. Spain will now be in action on Sunday, when they take on the Group D runners-up, a position currently being held by England.
Vicente Del Bosque refused to take the Croatians lightly naming an unchanged squad, the same team that dismantled a hopeless Ireland with a 4-0 margin. Fernando Torres retained his position in the side after the brace against Ireland and was flanked by Andres Iniesta and David Silva. Xabi Alonso was the defensive midfielder while Xavi and Busquets supported the front three.