Beginning with Isco’s breathtaking strike, Spain easily rolled past Belarus 3-0 Saturday in European qualifying action at the Bernabeu. It was the second goal of Isco’s short career with Spain’s senior team, but the three points don’t help the squad move up the Group C standings.
Earlier in the day Ukraine trounced Luxembourg, and Slovakia held off Macedonia, leaving Spain in third place. Still the victory was filled with excellent play from a squad looking to regain some form after a disappointing World Cup finish. It was the third loss for Belarus, and they remain winless in the tournament.
Isco’s magnificent ball came in 18th minute, followed up by Sergio Busquets goal one minute later and Pedro’s ended the matter in the 55th. Belarus appeared to killed off Spain’s initial threat until Santi Cazorla gained possession with a deft tackle and interception. Cazorla then found Isco, who tucked the ball from about 18 yards out just inside the top left corner of the net.
Not allowing Belarus any time to recover from Isco’s play, Busquets struck from even further out for the 2-0 lead in the 19th. It was a right-footed ground shot that slipped through Belarus’s defense and past helpess keeper Yuir Zhevnov.
The second half was more of the same, with Pedro punctuating the victory. Belarus left the Barcelona forward unmarked in the middle of the box to tend to Juanfran’s advancement at the top of the wing near the goal. But he quickly shuttled the ball to the wide open Pedro for the left-foot shot that cemented the win.