The longer this World Cup goes on the smaller England look as a world football power.
And in Spain's Carles Puyol, we simply do not have a peer.
The European champions recovered from the setback of losing their opening game to Switzerland, by halting the seemingly unstoppable progress of a bright young Germany.
Puyol defended like a lion all game and powered his bullet header into the German net with characteristic aplomb.
A European champion for both club and country, the Barcelona star rose uberalles to thump it past helpless keeper Neuer and steer Spain to their first-ever World Cup Final on Sunday.
He and his teammates will face Holland, who could join Brazil as the only nation to record a 100% record in qualifying and in the Finals.
But for England's squad already on their summer holidays, they look pathetic in comparison. No wonder we went home so soon.
2006 will be recorded as the last World Cup England could've won. Football's globalization is now complete and frankly, we could've been as likely eliminated by Japan or Ghana as much as by Germany or Argentina.
In a nutshell, Spain have Puyol... we have John Terry.
That divisive, bullying, yob-cum-oaf arrived in South Africa deposed as captain because of bad off-field conduct, then produced performances akin to those on Hackney Marshes.
Spain, after years in the doldrums stand on the edge of greatness aiming to become only the third nation to be World and European Champions at the same time.
And Puyol's not even Spain's captain! That's a measure of the depth of their talent and experience. To be honest, half a dozen of Spain's squad could wear the armband with distinction.
One of our immediate challenges as England fans is to put pressure on Fabio Capello never to pick Terry for England again. We will go a long way to rebuilding morale and togetherness in the squad if we never have to put up with that over-rated, disobedient, disrespectful guttersnipe in our midst.