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    Spain beats Portugal on penalties to reach final

    Jun 27, 2012

    SPAIN is through to the Euro2012 final after edging Portugal, 4-2, on penalties after a scoreless draw on Thursday, Manila time.

    Portugal’s quick aggressive drives led by the dangerous captain Cristiano Ronaldo put off Spain’s usually smooth passing game. But while the La Roja midfield wasn’t able to direct a successful scoring play at the Donbass Arena in Donetsk, the defense somehow managed to survive some potent attacks by The Navigators and the 120-minute all-Iberian showdown ended scoreless.

    A Panenka penalty by Sergio Ramos highlighted the shootout, his chip over Portugal ’keeper Rui Patricio in stark contrast to his last penalty, which he blasted over the crossbar in Real Madrid’s Champions league semifinal loss to Bayern Munich earlier this year.

    This time he put his team ahead, 3-2.

    Portugal’s Bruno Alves hit the bar and Cesc Fabregas sealed the win for Spain, which will be looking to become the first to retain the European title.

    Patricio saved the opening shot from Xabi Alonso before Iker Casillas denied Joao Moutinho next. Andres Iniesta scored for Spain and Pepe evened it for Portugal. Pique hit low and left to make it 2-1 for Spain and Nani again squared it for Portugal with a top corner shot.

    La Roja takes on either Germany or Italy, which play in the other semifinal at the National Stadium in Warsaw.

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