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Euro 2020 Preview - Spain

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🇪🇸 Spain 🇪🇸

They may not have the same star quality that saw them previously win this tournament, but la Furia Roja will head into this tournament on the back of some impressive form in other competitions and a renewed sense of optimism.


Road to Euro 2020
Spain dominated Group F thanks to the effective deployment of strong possession based football. They scored 31 goals in 10 games and are one of five sides that enter the tournament unbeaten during the qualifying phase.

The comprehensive 7-0 and 5-0 victories over Romania and Malta highlighted one of Spain’s biggest strengths. Those 12 goals featured 9 different goal scorers which displays the fantastic squad depth that Luis Enriqiue has to choose from. Spain have a number of high quality players in every position which should be a concern to all teams facing them in this tournament.


What to Expect
Under both Robert Moreno and Luis Enrique, the kings of tiki-taka football have stood loyal to their total football philosophy which they have implemented in ruthless fashion. This is well highlighted in the statistics which showed Spain achieved more than 698 passes in each qualifying game and maintained a minimum passing accuracy of 88%. This emphasises exactly how well equipped Spain are to execute the possession based game they prefer.

However, despite remaining unbeaten during the qualifying phase, Spain's biggest vulnerability was displayed and it's one that will be of big concern going in to this tournament. Spain conceded goals in half of their qualifying games and failed to keep a clean sheets in any of their most recent World Cup Qualifiers against Greece, Georgia and Kosovo. An immediate improvement is needed if Spain are to be successful against any other possession based teams as the tournament progresses.


Starting Lineup
Unai Simon has replaced David DeGea as Spain's first choice Goalkeeper in recent matches and we expect him to keep his position in goal.

In defence, Sergi Roberto and Pau Torres missed the recent World Cup Qualifiers through injury but we expect them to return for this tournament. Sergio Ramos was widely expected to be leading Spain in the tournament as he has been a mainstay in every 23-man squad since 2006, but his omission paves the way for Aymeric Laporte who recently switched international allegiance from France recently.

The left back position appears most open for debate with Jordi Alba, Jose Gaya, Marc Cucurella and Sergio Reguillon all stating cases for why they should be first choice. We believe that Jordi Alba's three assists in the recent World Cup Qualifiers will be enough to convince Luis Enrique that he should remain first choice in this particular position.

Despite Rodri's impressive form for both club and country, we believe Luis Enrique will favour the experienced Sergio Busquets in what may be his last international tournament. Mikel Merino was also ever present during the qualification period, but he was dropped from the recent World Cup Qualifiers in favour of Pedri and his season has been disrupted with injury setbacks since. Therefore we believe Luis Enrique will opt to start with Pedri and Koke in midifeld ahead of Fabian Ruiz and Sergio Canales who remain in contention.

Based on recent team selections it appears that Dani Olmo will be the first choice left sided midfielder ahead of the likes of Mikel Oyarzabal and Bryan Gil. Ferran Torres position looks assured ahead of Ansu Fati and Adama Traore following his exceptional hat-trick against Germany. Alvaro Morata remains as Luis Enrique's most trusted forward with his impressive goal every other game ratio.


Key Player
Spain have been very adaptable in their execution in front of goal but one of Spain’s most dangerous threats was Sergio Ramos. The centre-back scored four goals in qualifying for a Spanish side who are now lethal from open play as well as set pieces. His omission will be a massive miss for this Spain side and a lot of emphasis will be on Pau Torres to fill this void. The Villareal defender has been in impressive form and is likely one good tournament away from a big summer move.


Spain are rightly favourites to win Group E. Playing all the fixtures in the group stage in Seville should act as a huge advantage too. However, their vulnerability at the back could be their undoing against any side capable of producing goals in this tournament.

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