Spain boss Luis Enrique is determined not to use La Roja’s difficult preparations as an excuse for Euro 2020.
It has been a chaotic week or two for Spain in their preparations for this summer’s competition, which they kick off tonight against Sweden in Seville.
A positive test for Sergio Busquets and another for Diego Llorente – which turned out to be a false positive – caused chaos among the group.
Players were forced to train individually, and a secondary squad, which was a mixture of senior players who didn’t make the cut and under-21s players, had to be brought into the base.
As it stands, none of those secondary players have been required with no further positives recorded ahead of tonight’s opener.
But while the individual training might be seen as a disaster in itself by many coaches in the lead up to a big tournament, Luis Enrique refuses to use it as an excuse.
“They’re not ideal conditions, he told the Guardian. “But there’s no excuse. We’re among the six or seven favourites for sure.”
Speaking about the drastic nature of the restrictions, he said: “Jordi Alba and Gayá can’t come within 10 metres of each other.
“The right-back can’t mix with the right-back, the centre forwards, the goalkeepers. It’s two different XIs, a right-winger in each, a striker …”
Amid the complex situation facing La Roja, the Spanish government decided to vaccinate players towards the end of last week having initially decided not to.
And while Luis Enrique is determined to get on with he and his side’s Euro 2020 bid, he could not resist a not-so-subtle ‘I told you so’.
“I would have liked it to have been done when it should have been done, after naming the squad,” he said.