The tag 'World Champions' has been tough for Spain to handle of late and last night was no different.
Expectations were met with the 1-0 victory against Colombia but it certainly wasn't the comfortable walkover that many fans had wished for. Still, it made for far better watching then their last match that turned into a 4-0 drubbing at the hands of the Portuguese. A win and a clean sheet will help to vanquish that humbling night but a few more goals would have been nice against a Colombian side ranked 50th in the world.
With 85 minutes on the clock, the game had 'draw' written all over it before super-sub David Silva scored the only goal of a well-contested match. It was harsh on a gutsy Colombian side who had relied on a ferocious work rate and religious discipline to cancel out the gulf in class that there was always going to be between them and Spain.
For club and country Iker Casillas has become an indispensable figure and without him between the sticks the Colombian people may still be partying on the streets. Wigan talisman Hugo Rodallega went closest to hitting the Spanish net but it would be a familiar story of missed chances for the underdogs. Spain too came close to breaking the deadlock through David Villa; had it not been for the post he would have become the nation's record goalscorer.
Manchester City winger David Silva was one of six Spanish changes during the second half and he would eventually secure the win with a poked finish past 'keeper David Ospina. The ball crossed the line with only four minutes left of normal time leaving the Colombians with little hope of an equaliser and a bad taste of what might have been.
Moving into the business end of the season, clubs would have been holding their breath as their stars played in international friendlies, widely regarded as doing more harm than good. Fortunately there were no fresh injury worries to come out of the Santiago Bernabeu so let the season resume after this somewhat pointless international break.