It had never been done before last night. Never before had a team won three international tournaments on the trot. That was until Spain's golden generation of Xavi, Iniesta, Fabregas, Xabi Alonso, Piqué, Jordi Alba, Casillas (have we missed anyone? Torres? Nope.) came along.
On Sunday evening, the world witnessed 2010 European Championship and 2010 World Cup winners, Spain, take apart a resilient Italy side with a series of pinpoint passes, mesmerizing tricks and accurate finishing, on the way to a 4-0 demolition of the Nerazzuri.
Many have touted them as the greatest international side of all time, but are they really? RWD puts them up against the greatest international sides in history to find out...
V Hungary (1954)
Admittedly, we don't know a huge amount about this side, being that they played well before our time, but we know one thing: they relied heavily on one man: Ferenc Puskas. Without him they weren't half the side they. Not a good sign when they come up a against a Spain team that had no trouble marking Mario Balotelli and Andrea Pirlo out of a game.
RWD Verdict: Spain, easily.
v Brazil (1970)
There has rarely been a period in history when Brazil have had anything but a world class squad, but the 1970s team is widely considered the best ever. Boasting talent such as Pele, Carlos Alberto, Jairzinho and managed by the legendary Mario Zagallo. This side were the Spain of their day, playing the sort of fast-paced, attacking football that had never been seen before their time.
RWD Verdict: A competitive game, with Spain outlasting Pele and co. in the latter stages of the game to sneak a hard fought victory.
v West Germany (1976)
When we talk great all-round teams, you can’t look much further than this Germany side. With Franz Beckenbauer at the back, a strong midfield in front of him and Gerd Muller heading up the attack, they were a force to be reckoned with, as Holland found out on multiple occasions.
RWD Verdict: Spain. But not by much.
v Holland (1988)
When we talk of great underachivers in football, Holland are often the first name to come up. The year they turned it around was 1988, as they won the European Championships. Gullit, van Basten, Koeman. You get the picture.
RWD Verdict: Penalties. Fabregas to score the final one. Standard.
vs France (1998)
France’s squad for World Cup 98 was something to behold. With Thuram, Lizarazu and Desailly commanding the back line, Deschamps, Petit, Djorkaeff, Vieira and Zidane fighting for places in midfield and er... Stephane Guiv’arch up to, it was no surprise that France’s best squad of all time managed back to back trophies at France 98 and Euro 2000.
RWD Verdict: Spain to nick it in extra time, after a hard-fought score draw over the 90 minutes.
So there we have it, we’ve put the record breaking Spain squad up against the best competition in international football history, and in our informed opinion, they come out top 99% of the time.