Under-21 side beaten 0-5 by Spain

Spain maintained their perfect record in Group C of the UEFA Under-21 Championship qualifying round at the Centenary Stadium on Friday.

As expected, the Malta Under-21 side found it tough against the strong Spanish side, suffering a fourth consecutive defeat following the fine win over Northern Ireland in the opening match.

The visitors took the lead on the 23rd minute thanks to Sergio Gomes whose fine shot from outside the area when served on the right by Abel Ruiz gave goalkeeper Cain Formosa no chance.

Two minutes later, an erratic pass by Formosa handed Abel Ruiz the possibility of doubling the score with the Spanish captain hitting low inside the empty net from just outside the area.

Six minutes from the end of the first half, Spain scored the third goal when off a corner by Sergio Gomez, Hugo Gullamon headed home past Formosa despite the desperate attempt by Andreas Vella to clear the ball off the goal line.

Substitute Julen Lobete increased the lead five minutes in the second half after receiving the ball inside the area and rounding Formosa before placing the ball at the back of the net

Two minutes from time, Abel Ruiz scored a fifth goal with a fine volley which beat the Malta goalkeeper.

MALTA Cain Formosa, Christian Gauci (82′ Adam Bradshaw), Marcus Grima, Ayrton Attard (74′ Gianluca Sciberras), Andreas Vella, Alejandro Garzia (74′ Karl Mohnani), Jake Ghio (46′ Jamie Carbone), Carlo Zammit Lonardelli, Matthew Ellul, Bradley Sciberras (74′ Jamie Sixsmith), Jake Engerer.

SPAIN Julen Agirrezabala Astulez (74′ Joan Garcia), Hugo Guillamon, Alejandro Frances (46′ Jose Manuel Fontan Mondragon), Unai Vencedor Paris (54′ Jose Gragera Amado), Gaspar Campos-Anso, Oihan Sancet, Abel Ruiz, Sergio Carreira Vilarino, Benat Turrientes (61′ Sergio Camello), Sergio Gomez (46′ Julen Lobete), Manuel Sanchez.

Referee: Dario Bel (CRO)