Many predicted that Luis Enrique would do something unpredictable with his World Cup squad announcement for Spain – Ansu Fati was the surprise.
The 20-year-old has not appeared for Spain since October of 2020 and only has four caps to his name, but Luis Enrique opted to take him in his squad, in spite of his significant injury issues.
As per Marca, it was the call he had the most doubt over. Not until the night before did the Asturian coach come to a decision to take Ansu over Real Betis’ Borja Iglesias, who is currently the top Spanish scorer this season.
The technical team weighed up the pros and cons of both players and opted for Fati. His ability to play both through the middle and on the left helps. The main reason is that Ansu has a talent for sniffing out goals and making things happen in the final third, even when he isn’t at his sharpest. It is something La Roja’s staff feel could be valuable in the final stages of matches, for the final 15-20 minutes.
While Borja Iglesias has shown he is an excellent finisher, few forwards have the affinity with goals that Fati does, and nobody in the Spanish ranks does. As a main forward, Borja Iglesias might have been selected, but knowing that both are likely to be impact substitutes, perhaps Fati makes more sense.