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At last, we have done it: Casillas
June 30, 2008 15:19 IST
The enormity of Spain's achievement in breaking a 44-year trophy drought with their stylish 1-0 victory over Germany [Images] in Sunday's Euro 2008 [Images] final will take some time to sink in according to the players.
"At last we've done it," captain Iker Casillas told reporters. "I'm not sure we're yet conscious of what we've achieved. I've fulfilled one of my dreams and one of the goals I wanted to achieve before I retired from the national team.
"I was overwhelmed when the referee blew the final whistle but now I feel a little calmer. It's a huge feeling of happiness for all Spanish fans. They deserve it because we were all sick and tired of failing at the quarter-finals."
Spain won their only previous title when they beat the Soviet Union 2-1 on home soil in the final of the European Championship in 1964. They reached the final again 20 years later, but lost 2-0 to a far more talented France [Images] side.
They went out at the quarter-final stage at five major tournaments before breaking the jinx with a penalty shootout victory over world champions Italy [Images] at Euro 2008.
"Winning this tournament is an incredible achievement, there aren't words to describe it," said midfielder Andres Iniesta.
"We have fought really hard for this but this team has always played well and given a good impression.
"We the players, and the fans as well, were so keen to win a title one day and now we've done it. Now we need to try and win more."
Fellow midfielder Cesc Fabregas, who was in the team for the final in place of injured striker David Villa [Images], agreed.
"I don't think we're yet aware of what we've done," he said. "We did our job, we won well and we have proved wrong all the people who didn't have any confidence in us.
"For those who did we would like to thank them because they helped us get here."
Spain are flying back to their Euro 2008 training base in Neustift near Innsbruck to celebrate their victory.
They will arrive in Madrid on Monday evening and are due to take an open-top bus from the airport to the city's Plaza de Colon where fans can join the celebrations with the squad.
Complete Coverage: Euro 2008