Spain thrashes Iceland 5-0; Belgium beats Burkina Faso

Alvaro Morata scored a first-half double and substitute Pablo Sarabia added two more after the break as World Cup contender Spain overwhelmed Iceland 5-0 in an international friendly.

Alvaro Morata celebrates after scoring Spain's second goal during the international friendly against Iceland at Riazor Stadium on Tuesday in La Coruna, Spain.   -  GETTY IMAGES

Alvaro Morata scored a first-half double and substitute Pablo Sarabia added two more after the break as World Cup contender Spain overwhelmed Iceland 5-0 in an international friendly in La Coruna on Tuesday.

Juventus striker Morata was the only player carried over in the starting lineup from Saturday's 2-1 friendly win over Albania in Barcelona, with coach Luis Enrique rotating his squad.

Morata opened the scoring in the 36th, after Valencia defender Hugo Guillamon had fed the ball through, with a right-footed shot into the bottom left corner.

He made it 2-0 from the penalty spot three minutes later after Dani Olmo was fouled by Birkir Bjarnason in the area, with Spain dominating the first half but also squandering opportunities.

Yeremy Pino added a third in the 47th from close range, the 19-year-old's first goal for Spain, with Morata then replaced in the 58th.

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Sarabia headed in a fourth in the 61st, moments after he had come on, and made it 5-0 in the 72nd with Marcos Alonso providing his second assist of the night.

The win was Spain's fourth in a row and continued its build-up to Nations League matches in June and the 2022 World Cup in Qatar in November and December, a tournament Iceland has failed to qualify for.

The visitor managed only 16 per cent of possession and two shots, neither on target, to Spain's 20.

It was the first time the national side had played in the northwest city's Riazor stadium since 2009, when it beat Belgium 5-0 in a qualifier for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa that Spain went on to win.

Luis Enrique said the crowd's enthusiasm had been infectious, and the team had lived up to the occasion with plenty of chances.

"What we have been breathing for some time is the sense of improvement and the future looks promising," he added.

"Interesting games are coming up in June and we are looking forward to them."

Belgium vs Burkina Faso

An inexperienced Belgium beat Burkina Faso 3-0 overcoming a poor start and requiring an alert keeper as coach Roberto Martinez tested options ahead of the World Cup.

Goals from Hans Vanaken, Leandro Trossard and Christian Benteke secured the win for Martinez, who had chosen to leave out all players with at least 50 caps, meaning the likes of Thibaut Courtois, Kevin De Bruyne, Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku were missing.

Martinez gave a chance to usual third-choice keeper Matz Sels and made Youri Tielemans, in his 49th appearance, captain.

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The untested Belgian defence showed jitters early on, with keeper Selz called into action in only the third minute to block forward Dango Ouattara after a poor back pass from Sebastiaan Bornauw.

However, Vanaken neatly headed in a Trossard cross in the 16th minute and Trossard tapped in Belgium's second after Herve Koffi could only parry Michy Batshuayi's shot from a neat flicked lob by Adnan Januzaj.

Both sides took time to settle in the second half after multiple substitutions, until the 75th minute when Benteke won an aerial battle to head in another Trossard cross.

Burkina Faso reached the semi-finals of the Africa Cup of Nations in February, but has not qualified for the World Cup and on Thursday was thrashed 5-0 by Kosovo, ranked 109th in the world.

Against Belgium, the world's top-ranked side, it passed neatly and threatened at times, Ouattara hitting the post from distance and Nourdine Balora and Abdoul Guiebre forcing decent saves from Sels in the second half.

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