Spain got off to an excellent start at Euro 2024 as they brushed Croatia aside in Berlin. We look back at the game with our Spain vs Croatia stats page.

Spain got their Euro 2024 campaign off to the perfect start as they convincingly defeated Croatia 3-0 in Berlin. With Group B arguably the toughest on paper, the Spanish will be delighted to collect all three points before meetings with reigning champions Italy and Albania, while Croatia will now be even more nervous about their chances of progression to the knockout stages.

Álvaro Morata opened the scoring just before the half hour mark, scoring his seventh European Championship goal. That tally is below only Cristiano Ronaldo (14) and Michel Platini (9) in the history of the competition.

Alvaro Morata Euros Goals

Morata has been a dependable source of goals in a Spanish shirt – only David Villa (59), Raúl (44) and Fernando Torres (38) have more than him (36) – but doesn’t often enter the conversation surrounding Europe’s top strikers, unlike his compatriots before him. More goals in this tournament may force more consideration on the matter.

After assisting Morata for the first, Fabián Ruiz slammed home Spain’s second goal from outside the box three minutes later. It was 3-0 before half-time following a fantastic inswinging cross from the right by Lamine Yamal converted by Dani Carvajal. Spain had scored three first-half goals in a European Championship finals game for the first time ever; Croatia looked shell-shocked.

The exciting Yamal set a new European Championship record on his tournament debut for Spain. Barcelona’s teenager became the youngest player to play at the Euro finals, at just 16 years and 338 days old. He wasn’t even a year old when Torres sealed the Euro 2008 title for the Spanish. His assist for Carvajal obviously saw him become the youngest to set up a European Championship goal for Spain, while the recipient of the cross became the oldest to score for the Spanish in the competition (32 years, 156 days). Two generations combining to full effect.

Youngest Players in Euros History

Luka Modric had 16 caps for Croatia when Yamal was born. It was at Euro 2008 that Modric made his European Championship debut, and 16 years later he became the fourth oldest to play in the competition, at 38 years and 280 days old. He’s likely to move further down that ranking with some older stars set to play at part at Euro 2024, but this appearance meant he was the oldest to play in the finals since Lothar Matthäus in 2000.

Despite a host of experience in the centre of the Croatian midfield – 375 international caps, to be exact – Modric, Mateo Kovacic and Marcelo Brozovic had no answer to Spain’s fresher legs in the middle.

Bruno Petkovic had a chance to grab a late consolation for Croatia, but saw his penalty saved by Unai Simón before his rebound goal was disallowed due to encroachment during his spot-kick.

Enforced substitutions to both Morata and Rodri due to injury were the only negative moments for Spain in this game, but neither looked in enough trouble to fear about them missing long spells of the tournament.

Spain started the 2022 World Cup in sensational fashion, defeating Costa Rica 7-0 in Qatar and many got very excited, tipping them to go all the way. In the end, they only made it to the last 16, losing to Morocco on penalties.

The Spanish completed 926 passes and had 77% possession against the Moroccans that day but could only muster one shot on target in 120 minutes. Today, Croatia had more possession (53.4%), ending Spain’s run of having more possession than their opponents in all 136 competitive matches since the Euro 2008 final versus Germany (46%), but with a 3-0 win, the Spanish won’t care.

Two years on, Luis de la Fuente’s side look a lot more streetwise than the 2022 team, but only time will tell if they can make it all the way and secure a record fourth European Championship title.

Our Opta match centre delivers you all the Spain vs Croatia stats from their Euro 2024 Group B clash at the Olympiastadion in Berlin.

The match centre below includes team and player stats, expected goals data, passing networks, an Opta chalkboard and more. It gives you everything you need to do your own post-match analysis.

Underneath the match centre you can find the official Opta stats on the game as well. 

Spain vs Croatia: Post-Match Facts

  • This is just the second time Spain have started a European Championship tournament with a victory by three or more goals, following their 4-1 win against Russia on MD1 at Euro 2008.
  • Croatia suffered their joint-heaviest ever defeat at a major international tournament (Euros/World Cup), following 3-0 losses against Portugal at Euro 1996 and Argentina at the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
  • Álvaro Morata (10 goals) became Spain’s outright second highest goalscorer at major international tournaments (Euros/World Cup combined), behind only David Villa (13). Indeed, in European Championship history, only Cristiano Ronaldo (14) and Michel Platini (9) have netted more goals than Morata (7).
  • Spain scored 3+ goals in the first half of a European Championship match for the very first time. Indeed, there have been four instances of a side leading by 3+ goals at half-time in the competition (all time), with two of those instances coming in the three games played at Euro 2024 so far (Germany vs Scotland yesterday and Spain vs Croatia today).
  • Excluding shootouts, Croatia have failed to convert three of their last five penalty attempts at major international tournaments (Euros/World Cup), while Unai Simón became the first Spanish goalkeeper to save a penalty at a major international tournament since Iker Casillas against Paraguay at the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
  • Dani Carvajal (32y 156d) became Spain’s oldest ever goalscorer at the European Championships, a record previously held by César Azpilicueta (31y 304d also versus Croatia at Euro 2020).
  • The last two instances of a Spain player both scoring and assisting in a single European Championship match have come against Croatia (Ferran Torres in the round of 16 at EURO 2020 and Fabián Ruiz today).
  • At 16 years and 338 days, Spain’s Lamine Yamal became the youngest ever player to appear in a game at the UEFA European Championship finals.
  • Croatia’s Luka Modric became only the third European player to appear in as many as nine separate editions of major international tournaments (World Cup/Euros), after Lothar Matthäus (9) and Cristiano Ronaldo (10, before Euro 2024).

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