Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Fledgling Spain face stern test against world champions

17 November 2014, 22:56

Barcelona - An all-conquering Spain side were on the crest of a wave last time they faced Germany on the way to winning the 2010 World Cup but they now meet on Tuesday in what will be a stern test for a new fledgling team.

The indefatigable Carles Puyol scored the only goal in the semi-final in South Africa but he is now retired while other stalwarts of a golden team that also won Euro 2008 and 2012 such as Xavi, Xabi Alonso and David Villa have also left La Roja.

Instead, coach Vicente del Bosque has put the building blocks in place for a new Spain side following the failure at the Brazil World Cup to progress from the group stage.

Also read: Spain boss promises fireworks against Germany

The team that will now take on Germany, who replaced them as world champions, in Vigo are not yet the finished article but there are positive signs. Many of the players coming through enjoyed success with Spain at youth level, including under-21 European champions in 2011 and 2013.

In Euro 2016 qualifying, they have are in second place with nine points from four games having lost to leaders Slovakia but there was plenty of sparkle as they beat Belarus 3-0 on Saturday.

"You have to be optimistic. It is difficult to have players again at the level of Xavi, Xabi Alonso, Villa or Fernando Torres but they will be ready soon," Del Bosque told Spanish radio.

"I think we are close to achieving it. The players that we have are good and well taught. They are incredible. In some ways it is bad that players go abroad but at the same time they can make the squad richer with their experiences.

"The truth is that we have gone a lot of games without losing. We lost one game against Slovakia (in qualifying) in over 30 matches. The team is well balanced and against any team we will make it difficult for them."

Koke, aged 22, was in the under-21 side that won the European championship in 2013 and now is an integral part of Del Bosque's side having played more minutes than any other during Euro qualifying.

"There are six of us here that played that final," Koke told reporters.

"It is fruit of the good work with the national team that practically all that reach the first team come through the different youth levels."

- Reuters


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Jayne Zack
I am in ODM to stay, Busia Depu...

Busia Deputy Governor Kizito Wangalwa told Deputy President William on the face that he was in the Orange Democratic Movement to stay. Read more...

Boda Boda operators in Bahati rai...

Motorbike Boda Boda operators from Bahati Sub county on Tuesday took to the streets of Nakuru’s CBD lamenting over what they term is harassment by patrol police officers in the area. Read more...

Submitted by
Gabriel Ngallah
Human Rights activist lives in fe...

The Human rights fraternity in Mombasa is currently living in fear after the home of one of the vocal human rights champion was invaded on Monday night. Read more...

Submitted by
kel wesh
Poisonous milk powder siezed by K...

The Kenya Revenue Authority has seized two containers with illegal milk powder which had been declared as gypsum board at Mombasa port. Read more...

Submitted by
William Korir
Be ready for protests, Raila warn...

Expect protests if meddling with Auditor General continues, Raila Odinga has said. Read more...

Submitted by
Kenya says will return to interna...

Kenya will return to international markets to borrow when it feels the time is right, National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich said on Tuesday. Read more...