Defending champions Spain will attempt to become the first team to win three major tournaments in succession as they head to Poland and Ukraine following a perfect qualifying campaign.
As reigning world and European champions, Spain will be the team to beat once more in Poland and Ukraine. After ending a 44-year wait for a major trophy with their UEFA EURO 2008 triumph under Luis Aragonés, the Spanish have kept up the winning habit under Vicente del Bosque. They posted ten straight victories in 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifying, then recovered from a slow start in South Africa to reach the final where Andrés Iniesta hit the extra-time winner against the Netherlands. There has been no let-up since with eight wins in a row to reach the 2012 showpiece.
HOW THEY QUALIFIED
Spain qualified for Euro 2012 with a 100 per cent record, making it only the fourth time (France for Euro 92 and 2004, and Czech Republic for Euro 2000) that a nation advanced to the finals of the European Championship with a perfect run in the qualifiers.
La Furia Roja's qualification campaign was never in jeopardy, winning six of their eight group matches by more than a one-goal margin. Their biggest scare was against Scotland at Hampden Park when, leading 2-0, they allowed their hosts to pull the game back to 2-2 before Fernando Llorente netted the winner 10 minutes from time.
The following match against the Czech Republic in Granada was the only occasion that Vicente del Bosque's men fell behind throughout the qualifiers.
PAST RECORD IN THE EUROS
1960 Withdrew 1988 Group stage
1964 Winners 1992 Did not qualify
1968 Did not qualify 1996 Quarter-finals
1972 Did not qualify 2000 Quarter-finals
1976 Did not qualify 2004 Group stage
1980 Group stage 2008 Winners
1984 Runners-up 2012 Qualified as group winners
Labelled as perennial underachievers in international football, Spain's only ever senior title prior to 2008 was the 1964 European Championship on home soil when they defeated the Soviet Union 2-1 in the final. By winning the competition again at Euro 2008 in Austria-Switzerland, they became the second most successful nation in the tournament along with France, lagging behind only Germany, who have lifted the Henri Delaunay trophy three times.
Del Bosque's outfit will be only the third team - after Germany and France - to head into a European Championship tournament while simultaneously holding the World Cup and the Euros. In Poland-Ukraine, Spain will attempt to become the first country to successfully defend their European crown.
Overall: P135 W85 D25 L25 F298 A114
Final tournament: P30 W13 D9 L8 F38 A31
Qualifying: P105 W72 D16 L17 F260 A83