Was England's massive success in the qualifying rounds for the 2016 European Championship a fluke? Did the Three Lions manage a perfect 10-win record in the qualifiers because they got drawn into an easy group? Those questions are certainly being asked by football pundits worldwide after Spain take down England 0-2 in a Friday friendly match.

Tweaking the Lineup

To be fair, England manager Roy Hodgson was experimenting with an unusual lineup on Friday evening. Hodgson mixed things up quite a bit throughout England's Euro 2016 qualifiers, swapping between Wayne Rooney and Harry Kane for the center forward position but also frequently putting Danny Welbeck, Raheem Sterling, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Adam Lallana, and Jamie Vardy at or near the front of his offensive line.

For Friday's match, Hodgson left Rooney off the starting lineup, handing the captain's armband to goalkeeper Joe Hart instead. Kane, meanwhile, took the center forward position, with Lallana, Sterling, and midfielder Ross Barkley as his offensive support. Rooney did get some play time later on in the game, subbing in for Barkley at the 73-minute mark. Vardy was sidelined, despite his hugely impressive performance at Leicester City this season. Welbeck and Oxlade-Chamberlain, meanwhile, are both injured.

Spain: Still the Most Experienced Team on the Field

Even considering England's irregular lineup, though, there was no doubt that the Three Lions were forced England Away Shirt 2014 - 2015to play a different kind of game than they did for the majority of the European Championship qualifying games. England's Group E draw for the qualifiers put the football team against Switzerland, Slovenia, Estonia, Lithuania, and San Marino. None of those teams were able to test England, as evidenced by the 31 goals the Brits scored in the qualifiers (compared to the three they conceded).

Against an experienced Spanish soccer squad, though, England were quickly forced into a defensive position in Friday's friendly fixture. They stayed the defenders for the majority of the game, only tallying 38% of the possession time.

Spain, meanwhile, looked strong enough to assure some fans about their Euro 2016 chances. Many soccer pundits have wondered when the Spanish national football team would even be a factor at next year's European Championship, in light of the country's disastrous performance at last year's World Cup. The Red Fury, of course, won consecutive Euro titles in 2008 and 2012, but they've lost a lot of stars since the second victory and are a different team now than they were then.

Friday's friendly showed that Spain can still look like the most experienced team on the field, though-even against an English team with a ton of momentum. Particularly impressive for the home team were Cesc Fabregas and Diego Costa-two players who have had poor domestic seasons so far. At Chelsea, Fabregas and Costa have seemed weighted by the soccer club's seemingly never-ending troubles.

Freed from that weight, Costa and Fabregas played good football on Friday, frequently collaborating in the first half to move the ball down the field. At the 72-minute mark, Fabregas even delivered the assist that got defender Mario Gasper the first goal of the match.

A Strong Finish

The Gasper goal clearly pushed England into crisis mode. Despite the low-stakes, no-risk nature of the Spain 2014 World Cup Home Shirtfriendly fixture, the Three Lions seemed to panic after Spain took the lead. Hodgson sent Rooney in to help out his offense right after the goal, and less than 10 minutes later, Kane slipped while taking a shot to send the ball wide.

Kane's missed equalizer was essentially the final nail in England's coffin, but in case anyone still wasn't sure, Spain clarified the fact quickly. At the 84-minute mark, Santi Cazorla took an assist from Nolito and sent a 20-yard kick into the bottom corner of the goal. Hart thought there should have been an offside call (and was even shown a yellow card for losing his temper with the ref) but the goal ultimately stood, and Spain won the match 2-0.

Overall, the loss isn't a huge deal for England, considering the men Hodgson either chose to rest or couldn't play because of injury. The Three Lions still have to be considered Euro 2016 contenders on the strength of their qualifying performance alone. The game does, however, show that Spain are still a football force to be reckoned with, for anyone who was doubting the double reigning champs.

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