Aritz Aduriz’s place in the Spain squad for friendlies against Italy and Romania is confirmed, with Diego Costa dropping out.
Aduriz had been heavily touted for a call-up after his sustained goalscoring exploits for Athletic Bilbao, and he replaces Costa, the Chelsea striker recently courting controversy amidst a muscle problem and poor form for La Roja.
The attacker’s last and – to date, only – appearance for the national team came during a Euro 2012 qualifier against Lithuania in 2010.
Elsewhere, Nacho Fernandez is named, despite his lack of appearances for Real Madrid, while in-form Barcelona utility man Sergi Roberto makes the cut for the first time.
However, Andres Iniesta joins Costa in a big name being omitted, likely due to Vicente del Bosque’s keenliness on experimenting, with Euro 2016 just three months away.
Spain kick off their international break against Italy on March 24, before facing Romania three days later.
Spain squad in full: Casillas (Porto), De Gea (Manchester United), Rico (Sevilla); Juanfran (Atletico Madrid), Mario (Villarreal), Pique, Bartra (Barcelona), Ramos, Nacho (Real Madrid), Alba (Barcelona), Azpilicueta (Chelsea); Busquets (Barcelona), San Jose (Athletic Bilbao), Sergi (Barcelona), Cesc (Chelsea), Koke (Atletico Madrid), Thiago (Bayern Munich), Isco (Real Madrid), Silva (Manchester City), Mata (Manchester United); Alcacer (Valencia), Morata (Juventus), Aduriz (Athletic Bilbao), Nolito (Celta Vigo), Pedro (Chelsea)