Champions Spain lost 2-0 to Chile on Wednesday, their glory days
consigned to history books on the same day that King Juan Carlos
signed his abdication papers, handing over to his heir Felipe who
will be sworn in on Thursday.
Spain's main newspapers, which had splashed headlines about the
team's shock 5-1 demolition to Netherlands last week across their
front pages, bemoaned the second 'debacle' but mostly relegated the
news to inside pages on Thursday.
"The Spanish soccer team that has been the most deserving of a royal
farewell ended its fairy tale in an atrocious way, in a world
fiasco," Spain's leading newspaper El Pais said.
The undisputed kings of global football in the last six years, Spain
won the 2008 and 2012 European Championships and their first World
Cup in South Africa. But their supremacy is no more and an ageing
team needs to be rebuilt.
"Crash! The end of a unique generation," sports newspaper Marca
Spain became the third champions in the last four World Cups to be
eliminated at the first hurdle and their departure will almost
certainly end the long international careers of their greats Xavi,
Iker Casillas and Xabi Alonso.
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"It was nice while it lasted," sports newspaper AS said.
(This refiled version of the story fixes typo in fourth paragraph)
(Reporting by Tracy Rucinski, editing by Sudipto Ganguly)
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