Soccer

Spain defeated in World Cup qualifying for first time since 1993

Sweden beat Spain 2-1 on Thursday night at the Friends Arena in Solna, marking a tough loss for La Roja, putting them at second place in the Group B table.

Spain has moved down to second place in the Group B table in their World Cup qualifying campaign for Qatar 2022 after Sweden defeated them 2-1 Thursday night. Spain now trails Sweden by two points.

Spain was off to a good start when Carlos Soler scored the first goal, but Sweden immediately responded with a goal by Alexander Isak. A strike in the second half by Viktor Claesson put Sweden ahead and resulted in Spain's first World Cup qualifying defeat since 1993.

A quick turn of events

Luis Enrique started Carlos Soler, silver-medalist at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, at midfield and he proved that to be a good decision right from the start, putting Spain up 1-0 in the opening minutes. Spain's fortune stopped there, however, when less than a minute later Soler unsuccessfully tried to  pass the ball back to Sergio Busquets, but instead gave Isak a wide-open opportunity. He took advantage, shooting right past Spain's Unai Simon to tie up the game 1-1.

In the second half of the game, Sweden struck a corner kick and Spain could not defend against it, resulting Claesson receiving the pass and driving it home to put Sweden in the lead 2-1. Enrique started to make some changes to the lineup, but in vain, as Sweden's defense were not allowing another goal in for Spain, giving them the rare World Cup qualifying win against Spain.