SEVENTH HEAVEN Spain restored some sort of order by thrashing Costa Rica 7-0 for their biggest World Cup win ever.
Spain kicked off their World Cup campaign in style with a 7-0 win over Costa Rica.
Luis Enrique’s men ran riot as they fired out a message to rivals.
Unlike Mexico and Poland the previous evening, Luis Enrique’s team took full advantage of the shock defeat of one of football’s superpowers – in their case, Group E rivals Germany.
Costa Rica were not capable of doing a Japan and King Felipe VI was in the stands to give royal approval to the destruction of the former Spanish colony.
Midfield maestro Gavi made history by volleying the fifth goal to become Spain’s youngest ever goalscorer in a World Cup at 18 years and 111 days.
The previous youngest player from any nation to find the net was Pele, in the 1958 final.
Spain won’t be dreaming of a second world title just yet.
That’s despite beating their previous World Cup goal-scoring high, a 6-1 win over Bulgaria in 1998.
But if you had forgotten what a total mismatch looked like, here it was.
When Costa Rica lined up not in the predicted 5-4-1, but a narrow 4-4-2, you hoped they were going to show some endeavour.
Dani Olmo opened the scoring for Spain.
Marco Asensio made it 2-0 with a fine finish.
Ferran Torres netted his first of the game with a penalty.
The Barcelona star doubled his tally in the second half.
But they never got started and the game was soon finished.
Dani Olmo had already missed one golden chance before latching on to Gavi’s deflected attempt at a one-two and beating Keylor Navas in the 11th minute.
You always felt the Paris Saint-Germain goalkeeper was going to need to have a good night if the Ticos were to have any chance.
But he didn’t. The move for Spain’s second was impressive, but Navas’ attempt to keep out Asensio’s shot from a Jordi Alba cross, was not.
Gavi made history with his strike for Spain.
Carlos Soler came off the bench to grab Spain’s sixth goal. American nation looked beaten already. Hector Duarte’s clumsy challenge on Jordi Alba had the stench of despair about it.
And Torres did a speeded-up Jorginho routine to make it three from the penalty spot.
Luis Suarez sent his players back out on to the pitch early after the break and they huddled together in search of the will to play for pride at least.
But a mix-up between Navas and Bryan Oviedo allowed Torres to make it four.
There was even a chance for Alvaro Morata to get on the score sheet.
Spain boss Luis Enrique was delighted with his side’s performance.
It was so comfortable that Enrique felt it was safe to send on Alvaro Morata to see if he could boost his confidence.
And he did, first by crossing for Gavi to make it five.
In doing so, he became the third-youngest goalscorer in World Cup history after Pele and Manuel Rosas – as well as the youngest in Spain’s history.
Costa Rica’s frustration threatened to boil over in a scuffle with just over 10 minutes left.
But that was about all the fight they showed.
Substitute Carlos Soler scored the sixth and Morata made it seven in the third of eight unnecessarily cruel minutes of stoppage time, as Spain put the world to rights – for one evening at least.