Soccer

Del Bosque retains Casillas

2013-08-30 14:07
Iker Casillas (AFP)

Madrid - Spain coach Vicente del Bosque has once again kept faith with captain Iker Casillas as he named his squad on Friday for the World Cup qualifier away to Finland and a friendly against Chile.

Casillas has once again found himself behind Diego Lopez in the pecking order at Real Madrid despite a change of coach over the summer but, just like at the Confederations Cup back in June, there is no call-up for the 31-year-old Lopez as Barcelona's Victor Valdes and new Napoli 'keeper Pepe Reina are also included.

Spain need to win all three of their remaining qualifiers to guarantee a right to defend their title in Brazil next year without having to go through the play-offs in November.

However, the trip to Finland on September 6 is widely thought to be the toughest test remaining as the world champions finish their campaign with home matches against Georgia and Belarus in October.

"What worries me most is the match against Finland," Del Bosque told a press conference on Friday.

"We are playing for three very important points and the way we will have to play will be decisive so I have chosen the most adequate players."

Del Bosque has also shown faith in those that helped guide the Spanish under-21 side to a second consecutive European Championship in Israel in June as Inigo Martinez, Koke and Isco are also included.

However, there is no such luck for the Chelsea trio of Cesar Azpilicueta, Juan Mata and Fernando Torres as all three were surprisingly left out having been part of the Confederations Cup squad.

"It is a coincidence," the 62-year-old insisted.

"I don't look at which team a player plays for when I am choosing my squad. We have better options in these positions at the moment."

Spain squad to play Finland in Helsinki on September 6 in a World Cup qualifier and Chile in a friendly in Geneva, Switzerland on September 10:

Goalkeepers: Iker Casillas (Real Madrid), Victor Valdes (Barcelona), Pepe Reina (Napoli/ITA)

Defenders: Alvaro Arbeloa, Sergio Ramos (both Real Madrid), Raul Albiol (Napoli/ITA), Jordi Alba, Gerard Pique (both Barcelona), Inigo Martinez (Real Sociedad), Nacho Monreal (Arsenal/ENG)

Midfielders: Sergio Busquets, Xavi, Andres Iniesta, Cesc Fabregas (all Barcelona), Santi Cazorla (Arsenal/ENG), Mario Suarez, Koke (both Atletico Madrid), Isco (Real Madrid), David Silva (Manchester City/ENG)

Forwards: Jesus Navas, Alvaro Negredo (both Manchester City/ENG), Roberto Soldado (Tottenham Hotspur/ENG), Pedro (Barcelona), David Villa (Atletico Madrid)

Read more on:    spain  |  vicente del bosque  |  iker casillas  |  soccer
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