Rodri Helps Lead Spain to Victory Over Georgia to Advance to Euro 2024 Quarterfinals

Rodri helps Spain continue its winnings ways…

The 28-year-old Spanish professional footballer scored a goal as three-time champions Spain survived an early scare to beat a spirited Georgia 4-1 on Sunday and reach the Euro 2024 quarterfinals, bringing an end to their opponent’s fairytale run.

Spain, Euro 2024La Roja will meet hosts Germany in the quarterfinals after a polished performance, with goals from Rodri, Fabián RuizNico Williams and Dani Olmo in Cologne.

They had gone behind in the 18th minute when Robin Le Normand turned Otar Kakabadze‘s bouncing cross into his own net.

“We are very happy to get through to the quarterfinals, very excited,” Williams said after the match. “Step-by-step we have shown that we are a great team and if we continue at this level we can do great things. Their goal was a mistake, it was unintentional, we all cheered Robin on and in the end we are all pleased and happy.

“[Germany will be] very difficult, they’re a tough nut to crack, but we have a wonderful, well-structured team and if we play at this level we can win.”

Spain had a perfect record in the group stage with three wins and no goals conceded, their best start since 2008, when they went on to win the tournament.

Coach Luis de la Fuente brought his first choices back into the starting lineup having made 10 changes in the final group game, while Georgia kept faith with a side that included the tournament’s joint top scorer, Georges Mikautadze, and its leading shot-stopper, Giorgi Mamardashvili.

Playing in their maiden Euros, Georgia were riding a wave of euphoria and seeking an unlikely Iberian double after last week’s staggering 2-0 win over Portugal sent them into the knockout rounds.

Spain were dominant from the outset and almost went ahead five minutes in, when Dani Carvajal‘s cross from the right found Pedri, who forced an early save from Mamardashvili.

Williams came close soon after when his goal-bound shot was deflected wide of the target.

But Georgia stunned Spain when they went ahead as Mikautadze found Kakabadze on the right and he whipped in an early cross that struck Le Normand and bounced into the net.

Spain kept their cool and equalized after 39 minutes when Williams picked out Rodri, who fired a low shot into the corner.

They made it 2-1 six minutes after the break when a magnificent Lamine Yamal curling cross was headed home by Fabian Ruiz.

Williams killed off any hope of a Georgia comeback with a superbly taken strike in the 75th before substitute Olmo completed the rout with seven minutes left.

Georgia’s French coach Willy Sagnol said his team now had time to sit back and reflect on the amazing feat they had achieved.

“The squad has been absolutely fantastic. I’m very proud of that,” he said. “I’m very proud of what the players have done in the last months. Now it’s the end of a journey, but I’m sure the next one will also be very exciting.”

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