La Roja here to compete insists Mata

Spain midfielder Juan Mata says the World and European champions will be out to compete against Panama in Wednesday’s friendly.

The Chelsea man also expects an intense attitude from their Central American opponents as the game is seen as an important one for the whole country.

“We have come here to compete despite this game not being a qualifier, but we will be giving everything, and I expect a very intense game,” he told a Press conference on arrival after a 10-hour flight from Madrid.

Mata did admit, however, that the only thing he knows about Panama is that their Coach is former Real Oviedo player Julio Cesar Dely Valdes, who was at the club when Mata was a youngster there.

“Dely Valdes is the image of football in Panama and I’m sure his players will play in his style,” he explained.

Meanwhile, Athletic Bilbao’s Markel Susaeta confessed he was overjoyed at being called up to Vicente del Bosque’s national team squad for the first time.

“It is truly an honour to share a dressing room and train with these players, so I’m very happy.

“It is a dream for any Spanish player to be selected.”

Tags Juan Mata Panama Spain