World Cup champions to be welcomed in Madrid

Spain’s 1-0 victory over Netherlands kicked off an all-night celebration in the capital city of Madrid yesterday, were thousands of nationals cheered, danced and rejoiced the long-awaited win in the 2010 Fifa world cup final.

The national team is expected to arrive in Barajas today around 2.45pm. The players will be meeting with King Juan Carlos and Prime Minister Rodriguez Zapatero. However, the most anticipated part of their arrival is the 5-kilometer open air bus ride through the fan-packed streets of Madrid, past the city’s landmarks amid red and yellow cheering crowds.

Zapatero has praised the country's football team after they made it to their first ever World Cup final and said Spanish people should be very proud. “That was an incredibly nice day for Spain. I was very please to see the team play like that on the field. The game was intelligent, elegant,” Zapatero said.

Spanish newspaper El Pais under its front page headline "World champions," described the victory as "an ode to happiness."

The locals have expressed their state of disbelief, but contend the win is well-deserved as “Netherlands were not playing football, only kicking the Spanish players”, national and fan Xavier Molina said.

A group of fans were shouting "Iniesta Presidente! Iniesta Presidente!" along the centre of the Gran Via, the Spanish capital's main road