Spain's national flag streamed from motoribikes and cars, as fans poured into Madrid banking on a Euro 2012 victory Sunday to briefly clear the clouds of economic crisis.
On the streets, in buses, even at swimming pools, young and old wore the Spain colours on T-shirts and banners wrapped around their shoulders, or waved flags going for two euros ($2.50) on street corners.
Huge crowds of thousands of fans packed around giant screens set up around the outside of Real Madrid's Bernabeu stadium to watch the action from the Ukrainian capital, Kiev.
"Spain are going to win," declared 23-year-old Ainhoa Fernandez, a business student who travelled from northern Santander to share the thrills of the Italy-Spain final.
"Italy played very well in the semi-final against Germany, which makes you a bit scared," conceded her friend 23-year-old Miriam Velez.
"We are confident we're going to win," she added.
"Well, even if we lose it's no problem, we are the world champions and we will have that compensation."
Like other fans, they wore the Spain flag painted on their cheeks.
Waiting by the big screens for the start of the match, loudspeakers broadcast a song: "No hay dos sin tres" (You can't have two without three) sung by the crowds of fans.
Spain took two international trophies with the 2008 Euro and the 2010 World Cup and are now hoping for a history-making third title in a row.
"We are going to win the Euro Cup!" chanted a red tide of fans, young and not so young, wearing caps, hats and even wigs in the red-and-yellow colours of Spain.
"It's important to come and support our players, so that in Kiev they know the Spain fans are with them," said 35-year-old Israel Gas with his five-year-old daughter.
"This is great for her," he added. "She will remember this for the rest of her life."
"Three-one for Spain," Gas predicted with confidence.
Cities & Stadiums
The Top 3 Teams of Previous Tournaments
|2008||Spain||Germany||Russia / Turkey|
|2004||Greece||Portugal||Netherlands / Czech Republic|
|2000||France||Italy||Netherlands / Portugal|
|1996||Germany||Czech Republic||France / England|
|1992||Denmark||Germany||Netherlands / Sweden|
|1988||Netherlands||Soviet Union||Italy / West Germany|
|1984||France||Spain||Denmark / Portugal|
|1972||West Germany||Soviet Union||Belgium|