By Sean Walsh
Another bites the dust.
After narrowly topping their group (narrowly avoiding the same bad luck as Germany), Spain were knocked out of the World Cup in the round of 16 on penalties for the second successive tournament, this time at the hands of Morocco.
How did we get here? Weren’t Spain the favorites against their North African neighbors?
Well, it was the same old story with La Roja: a lot of ball possession, little penetration.
Captain Sergio Busquets – who was one of three Spain players to miss in the penalty shoot-out – had a pretty bad game walking in midfield mud.
The literal Golden Boy Gavi was also being criticized.
But the credit goes to Morocco, which took Spain all the way and collided with them. West Ham defender Nayef Aguerd was again praised.
Former Southampton star Sofiane Boufal, often criticized for her inconsistency, was playing the match of her life.
Spain nearly stole a place in the quarter-finals at the end of 120 minutes thanks to Pablo Sarabia, who was the first to miss on penalties.
Carlos Soler and Busquets missed for Spain, allowing Madrid-born and raised Achraf Hakimi to step up and score the winning spot.
With this win, Walid Regragui became the first African manager to lead a nation to the quarter-finals of the World Cup.
This article was originally posted on 90min.com as Twitter reacts to Spain’s World Cup elimination against Morocco on penalties.
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