Spain v France player ratings

Man-for-man marking from the Euro 2012 match at the Donbass Arena in Donetsk

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The Independent Football

Following the match between SPAIN and FRANCE we take a look at how the individual players performed. 

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Iker Casillas:

The Real Madrid star was relatively untroubled throughout, though he made good saves to deny Yohan Cabaye in the first half and Franck Ribery during the second period. 6/10  

Alvaro Arbeloa:

Found plenty of space on the right-hand flank but lacked the guile to really exploit the freedom afforded to him by France. Not always able to contain Franck Ribery. 6  

Gerard Pique:

An impressive performance from the Barcelona centre-back. Pique shut out Benzema whenever the French looked to cross and looked assured with the ball at his feet. 7  

Sergio Ramos:

Strong when he needed to be and able to frustrate both Franck Ribery and Karim Benzema. 7  

Jordi Alba:

Burst forward and crossed well for Spain’s opener. More of an attacking threat than Arbeloa and kept Mathieu Debuchy pretty quiet. 7  


Spain dominated the first period during which Xavi looked in total control. But the Spanish midfield was cagey in the second half and allowed the French to work themselves back into the game. 6  

Sergio Busquets:

Worked hard during the first half and closed the French midfield down quickly when Spain lost the ball. Seemed to take a number of knocks during the encounter and proved less influential as the game wore on. 6  

Xabi Alonso:

Ghosted in at the back-post on eighteen minutes and produced a fantastic header to put Spain ahead. France afforded Alonso too much time on the ball and the Spaniard was able to display his excellent range of passing throughout. Capped an impressive performance by killing France off with a late penalty. 8  

David Silva:

Crafted space on the edge of the French eighteen-yard box, but could perhaps have tested Hugo Lloris when openings arose. Less influential in the second-half and substituted midway through the period. 6  

Cesc Fabregas:

Aggrieved not to be awarded a penalty on five minutes. Often Spain’s furthest man forward and looked to run beyond the French back-four when possible. Like his team-mates, Fabregas played within himself as the game wore on. 6  

Andres Iniesta:

Threaded the ball through for Jordi Alba in the build-up to Spain’s opener. Iniesta looked at ease in the first-half but was uncharacteristically quiet during the second period. Removed with five minutes to go. 6  

Best off the bench – Pedro:

Replaced Silva midway through the second-half and proved a useful outlet for the Spanish. Direct running posed a threat to the French back-four and Pedro earned the crucial penalty-kick for Spain. 7    


Hugo Lloris:

Had no chance with Spain’s goal but rushed out well to deny Cesc Fabregas when the Spaniard was played through on goal just after the hour. 6/10  

Anthony Reveillere:

Looked relatively assured in defence but rather limited going forward. Combined with Mathieu Debuchy, the French did not offer any threat down the right-hand side. Conceded a late penalty when he tangled with Pedro. 5  

Adil Rami:

Produced a vital block to deny Pedro midway through the second-half and performed pretty well. Sometimes slow to turn when faced with Spain’s movement and pace, but held his own nonetheless. 6  

Laurent Koscielny:

Replaced Philippe Mexes and certainly did not disgrace himself. Not at fault for either of Spain’s goals and actually marshalled Spain’s attacking midfielders relatively well. 6  

Gael Clichy:

Aggressive in the tackle and able to stop Arbeloa from causing any real danger. But the left-back could perhaps have been more aware of Alonso’s run for Spain’s first goal, though he could have done with a shout from Malouda. Also caught ball-watching when Fabregas raced through on goal in the second-half. 5  

Yann M'Vila:

Touted to make a high-profile transfer this summer but was anonymous here. Struggled to cope with the Spanish midfield in the first-half and did not offer enough urgency during the second period. 5  

Mathieu Debuchy:

Allowed Jordi Alba to race past him for Spain’s first goal. Debuchy was played out of position and looked a little bit lost during the first-half. Seemed to grow in confidence in the second period and almost equalised with a powerful header on sixty minutes, though he was removed shortly after. 5  

Yohan Cabaye:

Tested Casillas with a decent thirty-yard free-kick after thirty minutes but was unable to break up Spain’s passing game. Cabaye was granted more time on the ball during the second period but failed to offer any real attacking threat. 5  

Florent Malouda:

Failed to track Xabi Alonso for the Spaniard’s goal and looked pretty ordinary throughout.  5  

Franck Ribery:

At times, Ribery was able to cause the Spanish defence trouble down the French left-wing. But Ribery was left isolated for long spells and grew frustrated as the game wore on. 6  

Karim Benzema:

Tried very hard but repeatedly gave the ball away when France needed the Real Madrid forward to hold the ball up or lay it off to a team-mate. 5  

Best off the bench – Jeremy Menez:

Worked hard during his thirty-minute cameo and put himself about. Unable to level things up for France. 5