Spain's Marca newspaper has recalled Spain's 12-1 football victory over Malta 30 years ago today, saying many view the sealing of qualification for Euro 1984 as having sown the seed for today's 'La Roja' dominance.
The 12-1 victory over Malta was by no means Spanish football's greatest feat, but it was arguably the most remarkable, the newspaper said.
"On 21st December 1983, Seville's Benito Villamarín stadium saw the Spanish players lay to rest the demons from the fiasco of the previous year's World Cup on home soil. Three decades on, the match is laden with symbolism and has become the stuff of legend," the newspaper said.
"For those of us who were there, it's flattering to think they still remember us considering now we have a team that's the envy of the world. It's appreciated". Those are the words of the captain on that historic night, José Antonio Camacho, who later went on to coach his country.
Muñoz's side went into the match needing to win by at least 11 goals to pip the Netherlands to top spot. Ultimately that's what happened and the pair ended up with the same goal difference – +16 – but with Spain going through on goals scored, having notched 24 times compared to the Dutch's 22. Half of those were scored in the match against Malta.