Spain secured their spot at Euro 2024 with a hard-fought 1-0 victory over Norway on Sunday, simultaneously paving the way for Scotland’s qualification from Group A.
In the early stages of the second half, young midfielder Gavi unleashed a precise shot into the net, ensuring the 2008 and 2012 European champions’ early qualification for next summer’s tournament in Germany, leaving them with two games to spare.
Norway, who last participated in a major tournament back in Euro 2000, and their star striker Erling Haaland, now face the possibility of qualifying through play-offs. To achieve this, they must retain their third-place position and hope for Serbia’s qualification from Group G to secure eligibility.
Throughout the match, Spain managed to keep Haaland at bay, frustrating Norway on a night when they found it difficult to make inroads. With just one match remaining, Norway lags five points behind both Spain and Scotland, who share the top spot in the group.
In the absence of the injured Alejandro Balde, Luis de la Fuente opted to start Fran Garcia at left-back, while also introducing Ansu Fati and Fabian Ruiz to the lineup. Spain dominated the opening period, with Dani Carvajal narrowly missing the target with a powerful strike.
La Roja appeared to have taken the lead 20 minutes into the game when Stefan Strandberg inadvertently directed the ball toward his own net, allowing Alvaro Morata to pounce and score from close range. However, the goal was disallowed due to an offside decision against Morata. Carvajal’s lofted pass was initially intended for Fati, and Strandberg’s intervention would have resulted in an own goal had Morata not touched the ball.