Spain survive Belarus scare
Spain came from behind to beat Belarus 3-1 after extra time and reach the European U21 Championship final.
Last Updated: 23/06/11 9:19am
Spain came from behind to beat Belarus 3-1 after extra time and reach the final of the European Under-21 Championship.
Luis Milla's side established themselves as tournament favourites with an impressive group campaign but were given a serious fright by Belarus in Viborg on Wednesday.
The unfancied Belarus broke the deadlock in the 38th minute when Spain failed to deal with a long throw and Andrei Voronkov showed great invention to beat David de Gea with an overhead kick that flew in off a post.
Belarus then defended resiliently in an effort to cling on to their lead and, with Spain showing signs of tiredness, it looked like a shock result was on the cards.
However, with just one minute of normal time remaining the equaliser arrived courtesy of Adrian, one of the stars of the competition.
The Atletico Madrid-bound striker demonstrated good movement to get in front of his defender at the near post and turn home a low cross from lively substitute Jeffren.
The same player then made it 2-1 to Spain right at the end of the first period of extra time as a slick exchange of passes involving Juan Mata and David Capel culminated in a firm headed finish.
The onus was now on Belarus to push forward but their hopes were finally extinguished in the 113th minute as Jeffren completed the scoring with a stunning left-footed strike from outside the area.
Spain go on to face Switzerland or Czech Republic in Saturday's showpiece.