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Spain: Faith in youth, true to style but needing goals

Spain: Faith in youth, true to style but needing goals

Madrid, Nov 12 (SocialNews.XYZ) There were few surprises in the Spain squad named by coach Luis Enrique late on Friday as the Spanish look to repeat their historic triumph of 2010 under the guidance of Vicente del Bosque.

The coach has placed a lot of importance on youth, with players such as Pedri, Gavi, Yeremy Pino and Nico Williams all included in his 26-man squad.


On paper, this Spain squad doesn't have the same talent as that legendary team that won the World Cup in 2010 in South Africa. Sergio Busquets is the only survivor from 2010, although left-back Jordi Alba began his long international career in the wake of that triumph in South Africa.

Enrique has looked to Barcelona to provide the backbone of his squad, with Busquets, Pedri and Gavi likely to be fixtures in midfield, while Ferran Torres, Eric Garcia and Ansu Fati are also included, reports Xinhua.

Fati's inclusion could be a risk, but the player, who only turned 20 on October 31st, has been accumulating minutes after two years of struggling with injury and his pace and skill could be a key factor in an area where the Spanish perhaps struggle the most.

Along with Nico Williams, who will probably come on the right wing as an impact sub, Fati is one of those players who can turn a game in a moment of magic and that is important for the Spanish.

Although Spain scored 15 goals in their World Cup qualifying campaign, they tended to make hard work of a lot of their matches, controlling a high percentage of the ball, but failing to turn possession into clear-cut chances.

Alvaro Morata is likely to lead the Spain attack and Morata's record of 27 goals in 57 appearances is impressive. However, he isn't a penalty area killer and with Gerard Moreno not considered fit enough and Mikel Oyarzabal still recovering from a knee injury, Spain has lost two of their most consistent scorers.

Spain's defence could be a weakness, with Inigo Martinez a surprise omission, especially because while Pau Torres and Eric Garcia are both good on the ball, they lack the defensive expedience of the Basque.

Jordi Alba and Jose Gaya offer a guarantee at left back, while Dani Carvajal will play on the right, with Azpilicueta and Llorente as backups. Athletic Club Bilbao's Unai Simon is a fixture in goal, a rapid shot-stopper and confident in the air.

Expect Spain to play a 4-3-3 formation, with Simon in goal, Carvajal on the right, Aymeric Laporte and Garcia in central defense and either Alba or Gaya on the left. Pedri, Gavi and Busquets or Rodri will start in midfield, with Morata leading the line flanked by Olmo (or Sarabia) and Torres, with Williams and Yeremy as impact subs.

Spain will play a warmup game in Jordan on November 17 and that should give a better idea of just how the at-times unpredictable Enrique will line up his side.

Source: IANS

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Spain: Faith in youth, true to style but needing goals

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