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Spain has to wait days to learn its next Euro 2024 opponent then rush to research them

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Spain has to wait days to learn its next Euro 2024 opponent then rush to research them
Sport

Sport

Spain has to wait days to learn its next Euro 2024 opponent then rush to research them

2024-06-25 06:56 Last Updated At:07:01

DUESSELDORF, Germany (AP) — Spain doesn't know who it plays next at Euro 2024.

Croatia thinks it's out but doesn't know for sure.

The tournament format means days of waiting for some teams, rushed work for their analysts, and a headache for fans trying to grasp where their team will play next.

The issue is because the European Championship has six groups, but only four of the third-place teams with the best records qualify for the round of 16. That means if you're due to face a third-place team — like Spain is after winning Group B — you won't know who you have next until all of the groups have played.

“We might have to stay awake all night in order to study our rival when we find out who it is," Spain coach Luis de la Fuente said in translated comments after Albania was beaten 1-0 on Monday.

"We need to wait until Wednesday probably, a couple of days, until we know who we’re playing with. In any case, we’ll be mentally prepared to go all out and try to get to the next stage.”

De la Fuente said his staff had prepared research on potential opponents, but there were many of them.

Depending on how the remaining eight group-stage games unfold, Spain's potential opponents range from an underperforming heavyweight like Belgium to Austria, Ukraine or newcomer Georgia. It could even potentially run into the Netherlands or France — hardly the reward a group winner might expect.

Croatia coach Zlatko Dalic indicated he thinks his team is out of the tournament. Still, it may not be official for two more days. Conceding a goal deep into added time in its 1-1 draw with Italy dropped Croatia from second to third in the group.

With just two points from three games and a poor goal difference, Croatia needs a series of other results in Groups C, D, and F to go its way just to stay in the competition. Also waiting is Hungary, which placed third in Group A thanks to its 1-0 win over Scotland on Sunday and is in line to qualify, but doesn't yet know for sure.

AP sports writer Ciaran Fahey in Leipzig contributed.

AP Euro 2024: https://apnews.com/hub/euro-2024

Spain's head coach Luis de la Fuente holds the ball during a Group B match between Albania and Spain at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dusseldorf, Germany, Monday, June 24, 2024. Spain won 1-0. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

Spain's head coach Luis de la Fuente holds the ball during a Group B match between Albania and Spain at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dusseldorf, Germany, Monday, June 24, 2024. Spain won 1-0. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

Spain's head coach Luis de la Fuente enters the pitch ahead of a Group B match between Albania and Spain at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dusseldorf, Germany, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

Spain's head coach Luis de la Fuente enters the pitch ahead of a Group B match between Albania and Spain at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dusseldorf, Germany, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

Spain's head coach Luis de la Fuente gestures during a Group B match between Albania and Spain at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dusseldorf, Germany, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

Spain's head coach Luis de la Fuente gestures during a Group B match between Albania and Spain at the Euro 2024 soccer tournament in Dusseldorf, Germany, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

DENVER (AP) — Jake Cave hit a go-ahead three-run home run in the eighth inning in the Colorado Rockies' 7-3 victory over the San Francisco Giants on Friday night.

Cave also doubled as a pinch hitter in the seventh, and Brenton Doyle and Ezequiel Tovar added homers for the Rockies. Colorado has 15 home runs in its last four games.

Cave hit a 410-foot shot to right field off Ty Rogers (1-3), the 31-year-old outfielder's third homer in 10 games after going without one in his first 66 games of the season.

Doyle hit a 434-foot homer in the sixth, his fifth in the past seven games and 10th since June 28.

Tovar’s solo shot in the eighth gave the Rockies their final run of the night. He has three homers in the past two games.

Jalen Beeks (6-4) threw a perfect 1 1/3 innings for the victory.

Rogers allowed three earned runs in just a third of an inning.

Though he struggled with control at times, walking four batters, Giants starter Kyle Harrison gave up just one hit in five shutout innings while striking out six. In two outings at Coors Field this season, he hasn’t given up a run in 12 innings.

Thairo Estrada tripled in two runs for the Giants in the second.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Rockies: OF Kris Bryant (left rib contusion) started a rehab assignment with Triple-A Albuquerque on Friday and could return to the team as soon as Monday, with manager Bud Black noting that the former National League MVP “feels good and ready to go.”

Giants: LHP Kolton Ingram cleared waivers and was outrighted to Triple-A Sacramento. … LHP Alex Young was claimed off waivers by the New York Mets. Neither Ingram nor Young appeared this season for San Francisco.

UP NEXT

LHP Kyle Freeland (1-3, 6.00 ERA) was set to start for Colorado on Saturday against RHP Logan Webb (7-7, 3.47).

San Francisco Giants' Jorge Soler grounds out against Colorado Rockies relief pitcher Victor Vodnik in the ninth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

San Francisco Giants' Jorge Soler grounds out against Colorado Rockies relief pitcher Victor Vodnik in the ninth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Colorado Rockies relief pitcher Victor Vodnik works against the San Francisco Giants in the ninth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Colorado Rockies relief pitcher Victor Vodnik works against the San Francisco Giants in the ninth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

San Francisco Giants' Thairo Estrada reacts after getting hit on the hand by a pitch from Colorado Rockies starter Cal Quantrill in the fourth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

San Francisco Giants' Thairo Estrada reacts after getting hit on the hand by a pitch from Colorado Rockies starter Cal Quantrill in the fourth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

San Francisco Giants' Thairo Estrada reacts after getting hit on the hand by a pitch from Colorado Rockies starter Cal Quantrill in the fourth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

San Francisco Giants' Thairo Estrada reacts after getting hit on the hand by a pitch from Colorado Rockies starter Cal Quantrill in the fourth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Colorado Rockies' Ezequiel Tovar, left, hugs Brenton Doyle, second from left, who returns to the dugout after hitting a two-run home run off San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Randy Rodríguez in the sixth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Colorado Rockies' Ezequiel Tovar, left, hugs Brenton Doyle, second from left, who returns to the dugout after hitting a two-run home run off San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Randy Rodríguez in the sixth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

San Francisco Giants manager Bob Melvin, right, argues with home plate umpire Brian O'Nora, left, after O'Nora said Colorado Rockies' Elias Díaz was hit by a pitch in the sixth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

San Francisco Giants manager Bob Melvin, right, argues with home plate umpire Brian O'Nora, left, after O'Nora said Colorado Rockies' Elias Díaz was hit by a pitch in the sixth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Tyler Rogers works against the Colorado Rockies in the eighth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Tyler Rogers works against the Colorado Rockies in the eighth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Tyler Rogers reacts after giving up a three-run home run to Colorado Rockies' Jake Cave in the eighth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Tyler Rogers reacts after giving up a three-run home run to Colorado Rockies' Jake Cave in the eighth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Colorado Rockies right fielder Jake Cave, right, is congratulated after the team defeated the San Francisco Giants in a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Colorado Rockies right fielder Jake Cave, right, is congratulated after the team defeated the San Francisco Giants in a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Colorado Rockies pinch-hitter Jake Cave, right, gestures to the dugout after doubling as San Francisco Giants first baseman LaMonte Wade Jr. (31) looks on in the seventh inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Colorado Rockies pinch-hitter Jake Cave, right, gestures to the dugout after doubling as San Francisco Giants first baseman LaMonte Wade Jr. (31) looks on in the seventh inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Colorado Rockies' Jake Cave follows the flight of his three-run home run off San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Tyler Rogers in the eighth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Colorado Rockies' Jake Cave follows the flight of his three-run home run off San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Tyler Rogers in the eighth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 19, 2024, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

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