Greece vs Spain preview

Group D winners Spain take on Greece in their final group game at Euro 2008 in Salzburg, knowing that world champions Italy await them in the next round.

Luis Aragones is likely to make several changes to his lineup as La Furia Roja take on holders Greece, who have already been eliminated. Pepe Reina should get his 10th international cap by replacing Iker Casillas. Carlos Puyol was injured in his last game, and Carlos Marchena is on a yellow card. Both should not figure as Spain go for an all new back four- Navarro, Arbeloa, Albiol and Juanito. Andreas Iniesta is the only player from Spain’s starting eleven in the first two games who is expected to start here, and that is only because Santi Cazorla is not fully fit. The Premiership pair of Xabi Alonso and Cesc Fabregas will get their first starts along with rookie Ruben de la Red. Upfront the lethal duo of Torres and Villa will be rested with Dani Guiza and Sergio Garcia likely to come in.

Greece are the only team not to have scored at Euro 2008. They are also guaranteed to finish at the bottom of Group D- the worst performance from a defending champion since France failed to qualify for Euro 1988. Otto Rehhagel has his share of injury problems too. Theofanis Gekas broke his cheekbone against Russia, and joining him on the sidelines for this game will be defenders Giourkas Seitaridis and Vassilis Torossidis, and also midfielder Giorgios Karagounis. Nikopolidis is expected to keep his place in goal, despite an eccentric blunder that allowed Russia to score in the previous game. This will be his last international game as he has announced his intentions to retire after the tournament and so has defender Paraskevas Antzas.

The way the Greeks have played, they are not going to trouble Reina, even with a new look Spanish back four. Spain’s midfielders will be keen for a good outing to impress Aragones. Spain to win this by a goal or two, with Fabregas and Guiza likely scorers.

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