Sunday night in Madrid saw an eruption of mass joy as football fans gathered to celebrate Spain’s emphatic 4-0 win over Italy in the final of Euro 2012.
They were marking history in the making.
Spain, the 2010 World Champions, have regained the European title they won in 2008, making them the first side to win back-to-back And they did so by the biggest victory margin in a World Cup or Euro final.
This was a chance for Spaniards to briefly forget the country’s economic woes and focus on the sporting success that has made their country unbeatable.
But while Spain savoured a night to remember in Kiev, Italy will want to forget the performance of a team that had promised so much.
It was tears rather than triumph for fans who had come together to watch the match on a big screen in Turin. An anxious 90 minutes ended in bitter disappointment even if some made an effort to look on the bright side.
“It is very sad. It was all over after the second goal. But we finished second so that is okay,” one fan told euronews.
“The Spanish deserved to win, though not 4-0,” another said. She added: “But we still support Italy and we are saving our hopes for the next World Cup.”
Our correspondent in Turin, Loredana Pianta, summed up: “By choosing to see the glass half full, this adventure has stirred new enthusiasm in Italian football, which was completely shaken up by match-fixing and illegal betting scandals.”