WORLD CUP: Villa brace ensures comfortable Spain victory
The scoreline may only have been 2-0 in Spain's favour but the gulf in class between the European Champions and Honduras was immense. Spain: 2 Honduras: 0
Venue: Ellis Park, Johannesburg Crowd: 54,386 Officials Referee: Yuichi Nishimura (Japan) Assistants: Hassan Kamranifar (Iran) and Saleh A Marzouqi (UAE) Fourth official: Martin Vazquez (Uruguay) Yellow cards:SPA - None HON - Izaguirre, Turcios
Red cards: None MATCH REPORT When Spain suffered their shock opening game defeat to Switzerland there was no panic as their performance did not warrant such a result. Against Honduras Spain played their wonderful passing game to perfection, the only thing missing was more goals.
And in such a tight group were goal difference could be critical Spain may well regret not at least doubling the scoreline. David Villa scored twice and then missed an opportunity for his hat trick by missing a second half penalty.
Such profligacy was a symptom of Spain's performance who tended to over elaborate and were simply not clinical enough when the frequent chances arrived.
Villa had earlier hit the crossbar with a 25 yard but was not to be denied with a brilliant solo goal. Bursting past three players from the left he found the back of the net with a sublime sliding finish.
Spain continued to press as Honduras defended desperately. Twice Torres missed the target when it seemed the Liverpool striker must score.
Villa's second just after the break should have signalled an avalanche of goals but for all their cutting and incisive approach play, their finishing was not clinical enough.
For once a sweeping Spain move had an end product as Villa's strike took a deflection before finding the back of the net. Just on the half hour the Barcelona striker had the opportunity for his hat trick but amazingly side-footed wide.
The game then went off the boil as Spain slowed the game down, and whilst still creating chances Honduras tightened up at the back and began making forays forward.
Cesc Fabregas almost scored within seconds of coming on as a substitute as he rounded keeper Noel Valladares but saw his shot cleared off the line.
Villa had a couple more efforts to claim the match ball but overall there was a feeling that Spain need to find their scoring touch to go with their approach play. Starting Line-Ups
1. Iker Casillas 15. Garcia Sergio Ramos (Arbeloa, 76) 5. Carles Puyol 3. Gerard Pique 11. Joan Capdevila 22. Gonzalez Jesus Navas 16. Sergio Busquets 14. Xabi Alonso 8. Hernandez Xavi (Fabregas, 65) 9. Fernando Torres (Mata, 70) 7. David Villa SUBS
12. Victor Valdes (GK) 2. Raul Albiol 4. Carlos Marchena 6. Andres Iniesta 10. Francesc Fabregas 13. Juan Mata 17. Alvaro Arbeloa 18. Rodriguez Pedro 19. Fernando Llorente 20. Aguinaga Javi Martinez 21. David Silva 23. Jose Reina (GK) HON
18. Noel Valladares 23. Sergio Mendoza 2. Osman Chavez 3. Maynor Figueroa 21. Emilio Izaguirre 8. Wilson Palacios 20. Amado Guevara 19. Danilo Turcios (Nunez, 63) 15. Walter Martinez 13. Roger Espinoza (Welcome, 45) 11. David Suazo (Palacios, 83)
1. Ricardo Canales (GK) 4. Johnny Palacios 5. Victor Bernardez 6. Hendry Thomas 7. Ramon Nunez 9. Carlos Pavon 10. Jerry Palacios 12. Georgie Welcome 14. Oscar Garcia 16. Mauricio Sabillon 17. Edgar Alvarez 22. Donis Escober (GK)