Italy 0 : 4 Spain
Spain retained their EURO crown after a pulsating and deserved win over an overmatched Italy. David Silva, Jordi Alba, Fernando Torres and Juan Mata scored against a side who played much of the second half with ten men after some unfortunate injuries.
Italy had used their substitutes by the time Thiego Motta pulled a hamstring with 30 minutes left and the score at 2-0
Spain had displayed a passing master class for the first quarter of an hour during which Italy struggled to touch the ball.
Xavi then deliver a slide pass to Fabregas who nipped in between narrow gaps to collect. His cross was by no means delivered to David SIlva on a plate, but the 5′ 7″ Manchester City forward arched while running at full tilt to direct his header into an unreachable corner of the net. Spain never looked like relinquishing the lead thereafter.
Italy used their first substitute at left back when Federico Balzaretti came on for the injured Giorgio Chiellini. It was to be a dark omen for the Italians.
It was not until the 32nd minute that Italy truly threatened despite finally regaining their share of possession, Antonio Cassano making Iker Casillas’ fists in the Spanish goal punch a long distance effort out.
Xavi delivered an even better slide rule ball to left back Jordi Alba who made a blistering run from his left back berth. Alba started the move himself, then ran like a winger, and finished like a forward to double the lead.
Casillas had to punch once more from Riccardo Montolivo as Italy sought a way back in but the score remained 2-0 until half time.
Italy coach Cesar Prandelli moved to shake things up with his second substitution.
Antonio Di Natale replaced Antonio Cassano and was in the action early but headed over 67 seconds into the half. Six minutes later he had an ever better chance and Casillas produced his best save of the match.
Thiego Motta replaced Montolivo on the hour using Italy’s last change. Four minutes later, he pulled a hamstring and had to leave the field, reducing Italy to ten men. Both sides to some extent were left to go through the motions thereafter.
Fernando Torres added a late third seven minutes from time before Juan Mata made it four with practically his first touch assisted by Torres.
Torres won the Golden Boot for that after finishing the tournament with three goals and one assist. This tied him with Germany’s Mario Gomez but the blond Spaniard won by dint of playing fewer minutes.
Spain: Casillas, Arbeloa, Pique, Sergio Ramos, Jordi Alba, Xavi, Busquets, Alonso, Silva (Pedro 59′), Fabregas (Torres 75′), Iniesta (Mata 87′).
Subs: Valdes, Albiol, Javi Martinez, Juanfran, Pedro, Torres, Negredo, Mata, Llorente, Santi Cazorla, Jesus Navas, Reina.
Italy: Buffon, Abate, Barzagli, Bonucci, Chiellini (Balzaretti 21′), Pirlo, Marchisio, Montolivo (Motta 56′), De Rossi, Balotelli, Cassano (Di Natale 46′)
Subs: Sirigu, Maggio, Ogbonna, Thiago Motta, Balzaretti, Di Natale, Giaccherini, Borini, Giovinco, Diamanti, Nocerino, De Sanctis.
Referee: Pedro Proenca (Portugal)