Spain looking good, says Richard Buxton
Del Bosque's men display trophy-winning mojo even without Madrid ensemble
(David Silva 30, Cesc Fabregas 32, Nolito 38, 54, Alvaro Morata 50, 89)
SOUTH KOREA 1
(Ju Se Jong 83)
Vicente del Bosque need not worry about plotting Spain's route to a third straight European Championship success.
Increasingly, the holders appear to be on the right path.
How to accommodate a squad which is spoilt for choice on both quality and depth, however, is likely to give the 65-year-old many a sleepless night ahead of the Finals, which kick off in Paris on June 10.
Winning the Henri Delaunay Trophy for a record fourth time will likely depend on Spain's coach and the most crucial requirement of all - luck.
Harder, better, faster, stronger; there is currently little separating Spain's strongest line-up from their well-stocked understudy - a fact laid bare by the latter side during an emphatic 6-1 friendly win over South Korea in Salzburg, Austria, last night.
Between them, del Bosque's starting line-up boasted a collective 593 caps - mixed with the experienced heads of Barcelona duo Andres Iniesta and Gerard Pique were a crop of English Premier League mainstays.
With the Champions League final contingent from both Madrid clubs winging their way to the Austrian training camp ahead of the final warm-up game, against Belarus next Tuesday, those with a standing start have been keen to leave a lasting impression.
And what an impression it has been.
As competition for a place in their Euro 2016 opener against the Czech Republic in just under a fortnight's time intensifies, those with points to prove have ruthlessly seized the spotlight.
Now with six goals in nine appearances, Nolito's place at the fulcrum of Spain's attack at Euro 2016, in particular, should no longer be a matter for debate and that should at least alleviate one long-standing aspect of del Bosque's selection headache.
After a brace against Bosnia last weekend, he followed up with another which supplemented a menacing individual performance, continually dancing through the South Korea defence with a remarkable effortlessness.
It is a foregone conclusion that the Celta Vigo forward will be elected to lead the line for his country this summer.
David Silva, too, defied del Bosque not to pick him for a starting berth after showing that the dazzling runs and clinical set play that was a staple of Spain's Euro 2008 success have not eluded the 30-year-old during his six-year spell at Manchester City.
Other members of the EPL contingent will feel they gave their manager food for thought at an eerily half-deserted Red Bull Arena.
Kamikaze goalkeeping played its part as Cesc Fabregas found his way among the goals, with the Chelsea playmaker stroking the ball into an empty net.
Arsenal's Hector Bellerin can also take heart following a series of fluid link-ups with Iniesta and Alvaro Morata.
Uli Stielike's boast that South Korea had nothing to be afraid of was a harmful brag.
His side can consider themselves fortunate that the hail of goals stopped raining as Spain's intensity waned long enough for the South Koreans to snatch a consolation goal seven minutes from time.
Their previous run of 891 minutes without conceding was made to appear increasingly meaningless by Spain's rapid-fire scoring of three in the space of eight minutes.
Tougher opponents in Group D - Turkey, Croatia and Czech Republic - will trivialise this comfortable run-out for del Bosque's charges, but the growing confidence on display is set to be a valuable commodity ahead of what should be a largely negotiable path to glory.
- SPAIN: Iker Casillas (Sergio Rico 74), Hector Bellerin, Marc Bartra, Gerard Pique (Aritz Aduriz 60), Cesar Azpilicueta (Jordi Alba 46), Bruno, Cesc Fabregas (Sergio Busquets 46), Andres Iniesta (Thiago Alcantara 46), David Silva (Pedro Rodriguez 46), Alvaro Morata, Nolito
- SOUTH KOREA: Kim Jin Hyeon, Jang Hyun Soo (Lee Yong 61), Hong Jeong Ho, Kim Ki Hee (Kwak Tae Hwi 61), Yun Suk Young (Rim Chang Woo 81), Han Kook Young (Ju Se Jong 61), Ki Sung Yueng, Son Heung Min (Lee Jae Sung 61), Nam Tae Hee, Ji Dong Won, Hwang Eui Jo (Sun Hyuk Jun 46)