Vicente Del Bosque doesn’t see Spain’s first post-World Cup squad as a ‘revolution’ and says the door remains open for the veterans.
La Roja meet France on Thursday, the first national team game since the World Cup dead rubber win over Australia, which came after Spain had been beaten by the Netherlands and Chile and knocked out the World Cup.
There are eight players left out of the squad to play France and Macedonia from the group that travelled to Brazil but in an interview with Mundo Deportivo, Del Bosque denied he has cast anyone aside.
“[Talk of a revolution?] No, I think not. There are eight from the World Cup left out for various reasons and the national team is not closed for anyone,” the Coach said.
“Not even for the eight who aren’t here, except for the two who have expressed their decision not to come, Xabi Alonso and Xavi Hernandez, to whom we owe respect for all they gave.
“They were two key players from the main group that had those successes and we try to mitigate their absence as much as possible.
“Football requires you to have new dreams because if you are nostalgic of the pass you will find progress difficult.
“At the moment, [Iker Casillas] is still the best starter and you can see it in his situation at Real Madrid. If the Coach, Carlo Ancelotti, is putting him in it’s because he’s doing well.”
It was put to Del Bosque that Spain have a favourable Euro 2016 qualification group, with the first match to come on Monday against Macedonia.
He replied that they can’t assume anything about the matches, and Del Bosque also welcomed the test of playing Euro 2016 hosts France.
“We can’t trust anything. A few years ago we went to Macedonia and after half-an-hour we were losing 2-0, but then won 3-2,” he recalled.
“Now there is no affordable, easy opponent and our priority will be to tighten up and not leave it for later in qualification.
“[France a tough opponent?] Yes, and that’s like in the competition when we will have rivals such as France, Germany, Italy, England and Holland.
“It’s always good to compete against the best but it’s true that the game against France is very hard against a team that hasn’t changed anything from the World Cup, just a player or two. It’s a very strong and complete team.
“We have to prepare for everything. No one is prepared to lose, we will prepare to win, but it’s clear that it’s sport and anything can happen.”
Think you know your Spanish football? Share your knowledge, tips and comments to win cash prizes in OLBG's tipster competition - £11,000 to be won monthly!