Spain ends 44-year drought with 1-0 win

Spain ended their 44-year wait for a major international title with a 1-0 victory over Germany at the Euro 2008 final in Vienna yesterday.

Spain ended their 44-year wait for a major international title with a 1-0 victory over Germany at the Euro 2008 final in Vienna yesterday.

Fernando Torres scored the only goal of the game in the first half as football's perennial underachievers finally banished that unwanted tag to the history books.

It was the first time Spain had won the European title since 1964 and their first final since 1984.

They seemed to start tentatively and a mistake from Sergio Ramos gave Miroslav Klose a glorious opportunity after four minutes.

Spain gradually started to settle but three-time champions Germany still had the next chance, Thomas Hitzlsperger hitting a tame shot straight at Spain captain Iker Casillas. Then on 33 minutes Torres put Spain ahead with a moment of sublime quality. He latched onto a piercing through ball from Xavi, outpaced Philipp Lahm and chipped the ball over the advancing Lehmann with a flicked shot.

Spain were suddenly rampant and Iniesta crossed to the back post where the unmarked David Silva had a rush of blood to the head and lashed a volley wildly over.

Brazil-born Marcos Senna came within inches of settling the game in the final 10 minutes but he couldn't quite stretch his leg out far enough to meet substitute Daniel Guiza's downward header with the goal at his mercy. - Sapa-AFP

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