35-year-old Aritz Aduriz has earned his first international goal in the friendly match between European Champions Spain and Italy to hold out for a fortunate 1-1 draw.
The Azurri led as Napoli winger and substitute Lorenzo Insigne made a clinical finish from a counter attack, diverting Emanuele Giacchirini’s low cross past David de Gea and ending Spain’s run of six clean sheets 67 minutes after play.
However, Aduriz, who made his only previous appearance for Spain six years ago, replied with Spain’s first shot on target.
It was a testament to his prolific form with Athletic Bilbao this season, which incidentally was also the reason he was recalled on to the international stage on this occasion.
Cesc Fabregas floated a free kick into the Italy area, and Gianluigi Buffon failed to hold on Alvaro Morata’s header. Pouncing on the loose ball, Aduritz buried it into the roof of the net amidst defenders who swarmed him.
But Spain could hardly cherish such a result; their seven wins streak had been brought to a halt. In fact, they would have lost without a stellar performance from keeper David De Gea.
Insigne would have thought that he scored the winner for Italy following a chip over De Gea, but the Manchester United goalkeeper managed to keep it out by tipping the ball over the bar.
Both national teams would prepare for the Euro 2016 finals, but the hosts who played in a 3-4-3 formation played livelier by far. Spain will travel to Romania next, as Italy travels to face World Champions Germany.