Aragones: Spain will leave a legacy

Spain coach Luis Aragones believes his European champions will leave a lasting legacy on the way football is played.

From their opening 4-1 rout of Russia to Sunday's 1-0 final win over Germany, Spain have oozed class and finesse at UEFA EURO 2008, their free-flowing football exciting the purists of the beautiful game.

"All those that love football want to see it played that way," said Aragones, who retires from his post after a four year reign revered as the man who masterminded the ending of Spain's 44 year wait for a title.

He added: "People want players who can pass well and get into the penalty area and score goals. They'll look up to Spain as a model of how to play football.

"We've won this tournament brilliantly, it's a happy day for the players, the background staff, me, all Spaniards.

"Now we can start saying that we can win titles. I hope Spain will go on in this way and bring lots of triumphs."

Aragones paid tribute to Spain's goalscoring hero Fernando Torres.

"Fernando is a great player at Liverpool and in our team - he's got extraordinary speed. I always tell him he's such a young player (24) he could be one of the best in the world."

Spain may have plenty more mileage in them but Sunday's final was the end of the road for the coach, soon to turn 70.

He refused to answer questions about his future at Sunday night's post-match conference, but all the signs are that he is due to return to club football with Fenerbahce with former Real Madrid coach Vicente del Bosque succeeding him.

While Sunday's success was the sweetest moment in the former striker's managerial career, it has not all been plain sailing for Aragones who was given celebratory bumps by his players after the final whistle.

He tendered his resignation after back to back losses to Northern Ireland and Sweden in qualifiyng for the EURO, but luckily he was kept on and the rest, as they say, is history.

Reflecting back to those dark days he said: "All the criticism just led me to work harder. I have mental strength, but perhaps others who follow me might not."

Reviewing the match he said the opening exchanges had been an anxious time for Spain.

"The first minutes were nervous for us as Germany started better but from the 15th minute when we hit the post I saw that we could win, we were better on the ball."