Manchester City midfielder Javi Garcia is delighted with his call-up to the Spain squad, and even more so that it is for the World Cup qualifying double-header.
The midfielder has been selected by Vicente del Bosque for the games against Finland and France during this international period ahead of the likes of Javi Martinez and Benat Etxebarria.
“This is my second call-up, the first was before the European Championships,” began Garcia in reflection at today’s Press conference.
“We know that to be here is very difficult, there are many players who could be here. These are two very important games and that gives more value to me being called up.
“I have to seize the opportunity and cannot relax. It gives me strength to be here, I will continue to fight for the national team and to help secure qualification for the World Cup.
“I was surprised by how great the group atmosphere is here. You hear a lot of things on the outside, but I have seen that here is a great group and there is great friendship between the players.”
The City man looked ahead to Friday’s qualifier against Finland, to be hosted in Gijon.
“If Spain are where they are today it is because they have respected every opponent. The three points here will be as important as three against France.
“We are at home, we must bear the burden of the game, just as Finland will seek to take any chances.”
Garcia was also asked of Xavi Hernandez’ condition at the moment.
“We are yet to know about Xavi’s availability, but he is very important for the national team and it is very bad not to have him.
“Hopefully he gets better soon and if he is here then it is because he can play and help us in [at least] one of the two games.”
France and Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema has faced scrutiny this week from his own country for not singing his national anthem before games.
“If I could then I would sing ours. We are all proud of our national anthem,” commented Garcia, on Spain’s anthem which does not carry lyrics.