Euro Cup 2020: Spain held to goalless draw by Swedentext_fields
The Spanish controlled with over 80 percent of possession and had 17 shots on the goal, but were unable to get the ball past a solid Robin Olsen as their forwards misfired.
Spain coach Luis Enrique started with 18-year-old midfielder Pedri, who became the youngest player ever to represent Spain in the finals stage of a tournament. Midfielder Koke also started while Alvaro Morata was preferred to Gerard Moreno in attack, Xinhua reports.
The Spanish dominated the first half, pinning the Swedes back in their own half.
Dani Olmo's header after 16 minutes was denied by Olsen.
Koke fired wide, failing to hit the target in the 24th minute. The ball dropped for him in the Swedish area but he failed to keep his shot down.
The best chance came Morata's way in the 38th minute after Marcus Danielson's defensive howler left him clean with a through-on goal.
The striker curled the ball past Olsen, but also put it wide of the post.
Two minutes later, Alexander Isak, who had barely got into sniffing distance of the ball all game almost made the Spanish pay for their profligacy as he took advantage of defensive a lapse to beat Unai Simon only for Marcos Llorente to make a vital block and deflect the ball onto the post.
The second half saw Spain continue their dominance, but at a lower pace. Consequently, it was harder for them to create chances. Once again Isak carved out the best chance after beating three defenders only for Marcus Berg to put the ball over when it looked easier to score.
In another match in Euro Cup, Slovakia upset Poland 2-1 through Milan Skriniar's second half winner in their Group E curtain raiser in Saint Petersburg on Monday.
(From IANS with minor edits)