Viva España

by Teflon

Tuesday, June 17th, 2008

Why Spain will go all the way!

Spain have been a long suffering team, they have never placing higher than 4th in the World Cup, and the only senor level tournament they have won is the 1964 European Championships, which incidentally they hosted! Their teams of old have hosted some major stars, the team of the 1990’s hosted a massive pool of talent! With players such as Raul, Nadal, Hierro and Canizares not to mention the rest who mostly comprised of The Barcelona and Real Madrid first teams.
It is a mystery why Spain have never really got out of that starting blocks, infact they have not got passed the quarter finals of a World Cup since 1950! They have also only reached a final of a Euro championship twice and apart from that they have never made it past the quarter finals! So why have the Spanish national side never been able to compete with the likes of Germany, Italy, Brazil and Argentina on the world stage?

1964 Euro champs

Looking back over the records I came across the top international scores list. Raul was first with 44 goals in 102 games, which is 1 goal every 2.3 games, in second place was a shock… Hierro 29 goals in 89 games! For those of you who know Hierro or are old enough to remember him he was a Central Defender for Real Madrid! Looking closer that is almost the same ratio as Raul 1 goal in every 3 games! I am sure he must be the highest scoring defender for a national team! But I think this underlines the fact that Spain just don’t score enough! See the Spanish play beautiful football not only at club level but international as well, and they have great squads… but what they seem to do is put too much hope on one player. Raul has been the golden Boy of Spanish football since 1996 but finally even after a good season Spanish Coach Luis Aragonés has decided to leave him out. It’s a bit like the Beckham scenario, does one man really make that much difference? So why do Spain always fall at the first hurdle?

Top boys

This year out of Spain’s 23 man squad… 18 of them play in Spain and 5 play in England! And looking back over the records an average of 85% – 95% of Spanish National players have all played in Spain during their international careers. Would that suggest that the Spanish National League may not be up to the standards of the Italians and Germans? Well we all know that’s not true, Spanish teams have won the Champions league 11 times in history, exactly the same as English and Italian teams!

Apart from Spain’s poor underachievement record the Spanish side has had a very positive start to Euro 2008, David Villa who I personally put £10 on to be top scorer certainly is looking to make me a happy man, they really look like a force which shouldn’t be taken lightly, they have some fantastic players in their squad this year. Fabregas and Torres from the Premiership are two of the fantastic young talent that have sparkled for the Spanish. The side has looked strong at the back, they are playing by far the most attractive football, they keep the ball well and look deadly when going forward with Torres and Villa so deadly when they get that half chance.

I personally hope Spain go all the way this year. They will have a tough ride with realistically meeting Either France or Italy next round then the Netherlands in the Semi’s. But wouldn’t it would do wonders for English fans watching a team that always underperforms to win something… who knows… it might just give us hope and inspiration!

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  • Danny Brothers

    Spain certainly look like strong contenders, they will be tested more and more as the tournement goes on but the players are definately there for a push to the semis at least. I look forward to what would be a superb semi with The Dutch provided they both go the distance and the tournament winners may well come from that semi I feel.

    Torres and Villa are deadly and will threat anyone in the world if they’re both fit.

  • Martin Tibbetts

    The day Spain make it to a final will be the day I shave my beard off. Every time its the same – they wow everybody in the group stage then blow it at the knockout. Personally, while I like the way they play, I really don’t want to see Aragones win anything, so will be hoping they perform as they usually do.

    I am still going for Germany v Italy for the final (as long as Holland actually turn up against Romania and don’t gently ease the real competition out at the group stage by underperforming tonight). Two traditional slow starters who know exactly how to grind out results when it matters…..

  • Darren

    what’s happening Martin? I’m agreeing with you again, Spain won’t make it to the final, anyone who follows International football will see the same pattern happening here.

    The dutch have peaked to early, we all know teams who start slow make the final, here’s some examples….

    Italy WC 1982
    West Germany WC 1982
    West Germany WC 1986
    Argentina WC 1990
    Demark Euro 1992
    Italy WC 1994
    Czech Euro 1996
    Portugal Euro 2004

    Catch my drift? All these teams started very badly and all made the final. It’s about finding form at the right time. I guarantee Spain and Holland will not make the final, my money is still on the Germans. I would love to see the Dutch win but they won’t…

  • Darren

    looks like the Italians are a force to be reckoned with, I wouldn’t be surprised if they win the bugger!!

  • tef1on

    then again France were dire! Luca Tony has good movement but has the touch of a donkey and the finish of a tortoise on its back! I cant see Italy making the finals with the run in they have.

  • Ashman

    Come on guys!!!
    How have you all COMPLETELY managed to over look the ever-present “Underdog” !??

    Who are the current holders of the Euro Trophy!? Exactly.

    Now although Holland have started in style, other top teams are yet to really get going (Italy beat France, but it was the WORST French performance i have ever witnessed at a major tournament.) Other “Big” teams (see Germany, Portugal, and Spain) are expected to improve now, where as all the attention is definitely NOT on the Croats.

    Greece did it with great team spirit, determination second to none, and with no one looking…
    And there is every chance Croatia could do the same.

  • tef1on

    I wasnt impressed with the Croats first performance Vs a weak Austria team, Same as the Turks, Sweden and Russia… I just don’t think they have what it takes to go all the way! Saying that what were Greece’s odds to win the last one at the start of the tournament? 100/1?

    I just can’t see them doing it. But It would make us English feel a little better if the team that stopped us from qualifying won it! I can only see 2 winners from what i’ve seen, Spain or Holland… even “ze Germanz” look rusty and weak in areas

  • Beautifulgamer

    They are looking beautiful – those Spaniards – but do they have the “intangible” elements to beat Italy? Italy have won four World Cups – the last one on a Fabio Grosso dive and a Marco Materazzi provocation – and often seem to find a way to win. I worry for the Spaniards as I would like to see them playing beautiful football in the final.

  • Danny Brothers

    It is one small, very small, saving grace that the two sides that finished above England in our group are in the Quarter Finals!

  • Darren

    Read the papers! Read the papers!

    I quoted earlier in this article

    It’s about finding form at the right time. I guarantee Spain and Holland will not make the final, my money is still on the Germans. I would love to see the Dutch win but they won’t…

  • Martin Tibbetts

    Another step forwards for the Germans tonight, looking better and outclassed the Portuguese. I keep saying it, germany v Italy final, get the mortgage on it…

  • Matt Quinn

    Russia to win. Their performance against Sweden was the best of the championship. Lovely to watch.

  • Darren

    Italy will bore everyone to death, they have made their mistakes in the group stages, they won’t do it again which makes them one of the favs. MMW

  • Darren

    I’m going to eat my words, that was as close to a footballing master class as you will ever see. From the back to the forwards, Spain were simply breath-taking. A true lesson on how to keep the ball. England can only dream of performing like that.

    Fabregas was sensational, still only 21 the boy is amazing, in all 3 games that he has played the game has changed. Ramous was class too, as was Silva & Senna. I really hope they go onto win it now. They play the game the way it should be played.

    Viva España!!!!!

  • dexylongshot

    Muchos agreemos Senoir Darren, that performance was different gravy, the Spanish pass masters didn’t let russia have a sniff, was Arshavin & Pav mentioned in the last half hour at all??
    Cesc was World Class totally running the game after his entrance. Spain were tip at the start, i think my dosh is safe, already got the finalists right. If Ballack gets player of the tournament, i’m pesatas in! Hollaayyy!

  • Longboard Guy

    Hey, I agree. Unfortunately giving a red or even yellow for theatrics will be very hard to enforce. There are some flagrant cases obvious to the viewer at home but it is hard for the referee to tell if a tumble is genuine or not without the benefit of instant replay. Imagine the double injury of taking a genuine tumble and then being awarded a red card for your pain. I think this is why most referees are loathe to apply even the currently prescribed yellow card, except they directly witness a violation, something which isn’t always possible with all the activity on the field.

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