Spain needs late goal to edge Tunisia in last FIFA World Cup warm-up game

Spain remained undefeated through 20 matches under coach Julen Lopetegui.

Published: 10th June 2018 05:07 PM  |   Last Updated: 10th June 2018 05:07 PM   |  A+A-

Spain's Isco (R) struggle for the ball with Tunisia's Dylan Bronn during the friendly match | AP

By Associated Press

KRASNODAR (RUSSIA): Spain needed substitute Iago Aspas to score a late goal to beat Tunisia 1-0 in their final warm-up for the World Cup on Saturday.

Sergio Busquets finally undid Tunisia's defense with a long pass, and Diego Costa set up Aspas to rifle in a low strike.

Spain remained undefeated through 20 matches under coach Julen Lopetegui.

It starts the World Cup with a highly anticipated clash against neighbor Portugal next Friday.

Tunisia, which opens against England in nine days, frustrated the 2010 world champion with disciplined defending until Busquets spotted Costa's run behind the backline.

Aspas, who was Spain's sixth and final substitution in the 76th, scored the winner with six minutes remaining.

Spain will also play Iran and Morocco in Group B, while Tunisia will also face Belgium and Panama in Group G.

Alvaro Odriozola, who started for Spain at right back for the injured Dani Carvajal, misjudged a pass by Thiago Alcantara in the 13th minute to gift Tunisia its best opportunity. Ferjani Sassi, however, shot weakly into the arms of David de Gea.

The African side went close again after attacking again down Odriozola's side after robbing the ball from Busquets, only for Naim Sliti to fail to make contact with a cross with only de Gea to beat.

Lopetegui made three changes at halftime, sending on Jorge "Koke" Resurreccion and Lucas Vazquez for Thiago and Francisco "Isco" Alarcon, and Nacho Fernandez for Odriozola.

Moments after Silva volleyed a shot from a tight angle past the post, the midfielder was replaced by Marco Asensio, while Costa substituted Rodrigo Moreno with half an hour remaining.

With Spain not improving, Lopetegui sent on striker Aspas for Jordi Alba and switched to a three-man defense.


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp