Luis Enrique is preparing to lead La Roja into a Euro 2020 quarter-final tomorrow evening, with Spain taking on Switzerland. It’s no easy task; the Swiss just felled France, the favourites to win this summer’s European Championship, in the last 16.
Spain beat Croatia in a 5-3 thriller that needed extra-time to decide it. Luis Enrique’s men have enjoyed a mixed beginning to their campaign; they opened the tournament with back-to-back draws with Sweden and Poland before blitzing Slovakia 5-0 and following it up with victory over Croatia. Luis Enrique promised cava football pre-Slovakia, and has delivered it in spades.
“Switzerland have qualified and both the good and bad thing is that both teams know each other very well,” the Asturian coach said in comments carried by Mundo Deportivo on Thursday. “It’s going to be a very difficult game. As a collective they’re one of the best teams at Euro 2020, because of how they press and attack. It’s going to be very complicated.”
Luis Enrique also praised Unai Simon, who bounced back from a calamitous error against Croatia to put in a strong performance. “You don’t have to be martyred,” he said. “The mistake doesn’t matter, what matters is what you do after the mistake.
“You have to do the reflecting after the game. [Rafa] Nadal says you have to have the memory of a fish and he’s right. If you miss a ball, there’s no use thinking about that ball, you have to go for the next one. That’s what Unai did; fair play to him.”
Spain kick-off against Switzerland in Saint Petersburg in Russia at 18:00 CEST. Before facing France, they came through a group including Wales, Italy and Turkey. They’ll be without captain and midfield lynchpin Granit Xhaka for the game, however, who picked up a yellow against France and is suspended.