Spain Coach Vicente del Bosque insists the timing of the friendly with Ecuador justifies his decision to ring the changes in his squad.
La Roja are due to take on the South Americans in Guayaquil next Wednesday, just days before the start of the La Liga season, with nine of the players who took part in the Confederations Cup missing and seven new faces included in the 21-man party.
Inigo Martinez, Koke and Cristian Tello have all been included for the first time, while Thiago Alcantara, Alvaro Negredo, Isco and Fernando Llorente have been recalled, a situation that has led to Del Bosque explaining his reasons on the Spanish FA’s official website.
“It’s the beginning of the season and a lot of different factors must be taken into account. It is a friendly after all,” he explained.
“It will help us prepare for the [World Cup qualifier] away game in Finland on September 6, which is the date we have pencilled in our diaries at the moment.
“The Finland clash is vital because if we win there it will be a big step towards qualifying, with two home matches still to come.
“We are ahead of France with three rounds of fixtures still to go but we can’t afford to take our eyes off the ball, as that would be a huge mistake.”