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Euro 2024 qualifiers: Spain in search of progress and novelties

2023-03-24T19:35:42.529Z


Eliminated in the round of 16 of the last World Cup, La Roja is starting a new cycle with a coach who is already imposing his choices and his philosophy. But certain limits could slow down his project.


The hope of a rebirth hovers over La Roja but there are not many certainties.

Eliminated from the 2022 World Cup by Morocco in the round of 16, the Spanish selection is entering this first international period with many changes.

With two affordable matches against Norway (March 25, 8:45 p.m.) and Scotland (March 28, 8:45 p.m.), La Roja will have the opportunity to lay the foundations for their new project.

To discover

  • Euro 2024: the qualifying calendar

  • Euro 2024: dates, place, draw

It has been several years since the era of a Spain dependent on Real Madrid and FC Barcelona is over.

The page of the Spanish golden generation has definitely been turned on the other side of the Pyrenees.

Proof of this is that the list of the new La Roja coach only includes 3 Barcelonans (2 now with Pedri's injury) and only three Real Madrid players.

But that's not all because, for the first time since the last Spanish coronation at Euro 2012, none of the players selected for this gathering was present during the European triumph.

A new era is dawning.

The Luis de la Fuente Revolution

Exit the whimsical Luis Enrique, make way for Luis de la Fuente, a pure product from the formation of the Spanish federation.

Unlike his predecessors, he did not go through the two Spanish behemoths, which does not prevent him from wanting to keep the basics of the Iberian game, maintained for many years now.

Spain has a model, a non-negotiable idea of ​​football.

But we are going to adapt it, we are going to integrate concepts, nuances

” to better “

interpret the changes that are happening in football

” explained the new coach during his presentation on December 12th.

Unknown to the general public, he had defended his credibility after his appointment: “

I was a professional footballer for fifteen years (…) and I have been working for the federation for ten years … This is the background with which I present myself.

“A background that could be useful to him given the current workforce of La Roja.

On the bench for the youth teams for many years, he has seen talents pass through which are now at his disposal to play with the A's. same success at the A level as at the lower level.

A workforce between limits and promises

But on arriving at Las Rozas, de la Fuente's young proteges ran into the old Spanish guard.

For his first list, the coach decided to recall certain players who had not tasted the selection for many months, like Kepa Arrizabalaga, but also to trust certain thirty-somethings.

Thus, alongside the youngest we find Joselu (32 years old), Iago Aspas (35 years old) or Nacho (33 years old) supposed to bring their experience in support of the new captain Alvaro Morata (30 years old).

The Spanish U21 team in 2019, coached by Luis de la Fuente Daniele Buffa

If the two strikers from Espanyol Barcelona and Celta Vigo respectively know a first selection and a return after almost three years of absence, there is a reason.

Their call-up highlights one of the problems that Luis de la Fuente faces with the current Spanish generation: the lack of attacking talent.

If the defense remains convincing and the midfielder is still a hive of talent, no Spanish striker has started in a top European club, which reflects a glaring lack at international level.

Players who must progress to aim for the title

Crowned European champion with the U19s in 2015 and with the Espoirs in 2019, Luis de la Fuente took the opportunity to closely follow the evolution of certain players he finds today.

With no less than 8 players already under his command, he has the advantage of knowing part of his squad well.

The talent is therefore very present in this Spanish team but the Spanish coach does not set ambitions for titles but wants to see his team progress: "

What concerns me is to get the best out of footballers and give them the tools to be very good

” he slipped in a press conference.

Difficult to give him wrong in view of an aging offensive sector and without apparent thinning.

If he has a little more than a year left before leaving for Germany (host country of Euro 2024) to recreate a dominant collective, he too could greatly depend on the talent of the Pedri phenomenon.

"If

anyone knows the present and the future of Spanish football well, it's the man in front of you,

" de la Fuente promised reporters this week.

However, with the limits displayed by La Roja, seeing him win Euro 2024 with the big boys still seems an illusion.

Source: lefigaro

All sports articles on 2023-03-24

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