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Spain staying grounded

2014-06-13 11:51
Vicente del Bosque (AFP)
Cape Town - Spain manager Vicente Del Bosque says the team’s World Cup success in 2010 will be of little consequence ahead of this year’s campaign.

While the Spaniard is satisfied with the progress La Furia Roja have made since their South Africa triumph, he has warned his players against complacency ahead of their Brazil adventure, highlighting the fact that circumstances have changed considerably since four years ago.

Spain’s first assignment at this year’s tournament will be a highly anticipated fixture against the Netherlands, whom they beat in the final of the 2010 World Cup and Del Bosque is expected to err on the side of caution for that match.

"The Netherlands in the last four years have changed dramatically. Proportionally, it’s 17 and six," Del Bosque told journalists this week.

"They are led by a great Coach and I rate him highly. They retain a lot of the essence of Dutch football and the people in attack contrast and are very dangerous," added a wary Del Bosque.

Del Bosque is nevertheless excited by the prospect of playing against such an established team so early in the competition and expects the two teams to produce a match of the highest quality.

"A team with a great school of playing has made the World Cup. And we’re in a team sport," he said.

"Our players are excited to play in the World Cup and we have the experience. It is a pleasure to remember the past but essential not to stay in it."

There is the slight concern that Jordi Alba will not be available for the Netherlands match and Del Bosque is playing his cards close to the chest in that regard.

However, he insists that not naming his matchday 11 had less to do with secrecy and more to do with encouraging all the members of his 23-man squad to compete fiercely for a place in the team.

"We haven’t given the team and neither will we. There’s no fooling for secrecy but we want all 23 ready for the start. We will play the team we think is best," explained Del Bosque.

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