Spain national football team


Spain national football team

Infobox National football team
Name = Spain
Badge = RFEF.png Badge_size = 150px
FIFA Trigramme = ESP
FIFA Rank = 1
FIFA max = 1
FIFA max date = July-October 2008
FIFA min = 25
FIFA min date = March 1998
Elo Rank = 1
Elo max = 1
Elo max date = 1920, 1921, 1925, 2002, June 2008
Elo min = 20
Elo min date = June 1969, June 1981
Elo rating max = 2049
Elo rating max date = June 29, 2008
Nickname =" _es. La Selección" (The Selection)
" _es. La Furia Roja" (The Red Fury)
" _es. La Roja" (The Red [One] )
Association = _es. Real Federación
Española de Fútbol

Confederation = UEFA (Europe)
Coach = flagicon|Spain Vicente Del Bosque
Captain = Iker Casillas
Most caps = Andoni Zubizarreta (126)
Top scorer = Raúl González (44)

Home Stadium = Santiago Bernabeu
Vicente Calderón
Mestalla
pattern_la1=_spainH|pattern_b1=_Spain08|pattern_ra1=_spainH|pattern_sh2=Kit_shorts_esp_08|pattern_sh1 = _ esp 08
leftarm1=ac0c14|body1=ac0c14|rightarm1=ac0c14|shorts1= 000033 |socks1= 000033
pattern_la2=_SpainA|pattern_b2=_Spain08_away|pattern_ra2=_SpainA|pattern_sh2=_adidasonwhite
leftarm2=e6d05c|body2=e6d05c|rightarm2=e6d05c|shorts2= 000033|socks2= FFFFFF
First game = fb|Spain|1785 1 - 0 fb-rt|Denmark
(Brussels, Belgium; 28 August 1920)
Largest win = fb|Spain|1931 13 - 0 fb-rt|Bulgaria
(Madrid, Spain; 21 May 1933)
Largest loss = fb|Italy|old 7 - 1 fb-rt|Spain|1785
(Amsterdam, Netherlands; 4 June 1928)
fb|England 7 - 1 fb-rt|Spain|1931
(London, England; 9 December 1931)
Honours =
World cup apps = 12
World cup first = 1934
World cup best = Fourth place, 1950
Regional name = European Championship
Regional cup apps = 8
Regional cup first = 1964 | 2008
Regional cup best = Winners, 1964, 2008
The Spanish National Football Team, commonly referred to as "La Selección", is the national football team of Spain and is controlled by the _es. Real Federación Española de Fútbol. They are the current European Champions, having won the 2008 UEFA European Championship. In July 2008, Spain rose to the #1 spot in the FIFA World Ranking for the first time in their history, becoming only the sixth nation (and the first who had never won the World Cup) to top these rankings.

History

Kits

Spain's traditional kit is a red jersey with yellow trim with dark blue shorts and socks. Their current away kit is with a gold jersey with white shorts and socks, although the away kit is usually a full white kit with red trim. A third kit is sometimes used and is usually blue with red and yellow trim. Spain's kit is currently designed by Adidas.

Early Years

Spain made their international football debut in 1920 at the Olympic Games in Antwerp and won the silver medal. They played their first home international in 1921, beating Belgium 2-0 in Bilbao. They also became the first non-British side to beat England when they won 4-3 in a friendly in Madrid in 1929. Spain, however, did not enter the 1930 World Cup. Four years later, Spain qualified for the second World Cup held in Italy in 1934. The Spanish side progressed to the quarterfinals and drew 1-1 with Italy. Under the rules of the time, the game was settled by a rematch which Italy won 1-0.

The Spanish Civil War and World War II prevented Spain from playing another competitive match until the 1950 World Cup. There they topped their group against England, Chile and the United States to progress to the final round. The cup was decided in games against the other group winners — Brazil, Uruguay, and Sweden. Success in the tournament eluded the Spaniards as they gained only one point by drawing with eventual winners Uruguay, losing to both Brazil and Sweden. Spain placed fourth in the 1950 World Cup (as of 2008, their best performance in the competition) but did not build on their success; failing to qualify for another major tournament until the 1962 World Cup.

Under French-Argentine coach Helenio Herrera, Spain came out of dormancy to qualify for the first European Championship in 1960. Spain beat Poland 7-2 on aggregate to progress to the quarterfinals. However, Spain forfeit its quarterfinal tie with the Soviet Union because of political circumstances between Spain's dictator Franco and the Soviets.

European Champions and the Villalonga Era

In 1962 José Villalonga was appointed coach of Spain. Under Villalonga, Spain qualified for the 1962 World Cup but exited in the first round in a tough group against Brazil, Czechoslovakia, and Mexico. Two years later they hosted the European Championship. With a squad that included Luis Suárez, Francisco Gento, Josep Fusté and José Ángel Iribar, Spain beat Romania, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland to move on to the semifinals. There they beat highly-favored Hungary 2-1 in extra time. They went on to face the USSR 2-1 before a crowd of more than 79,000 at the Bernabéu in Madrid. Jesus María Pereda put Spain ahead after just six minutes, but Galimzian Khusainov equalised a few minutes later with a free kick. Marcelino Martínez put in a late header to win Spain's first major international title.

As European Champions, Spain automatically qualified for the 1966 World Cup retaining much of the same squad from 1964 and keeping José Villalonga at the reins. However, they failed to make an impression and exited in the first round, defeating only Switzerland and losing to West Germany and Argentina.

1968 to 1975

The departure of Villalonga put Spain into another period of wilderness with mixed results. After winning their group in the qualifying rounds of the 1968 European Championship, they were knocked out by England in the quarterfinals and did not make it to the final tournament held in Italy. Spain did not qualify for another tournament until Euro 76.

Post-Francoist Spain, Late 70s and Early 80s

Spain came back into contention with an impressive undefeated performance in their Euro 76 qualifying group which featured Romania, Scotland, and Denmark. But Spain's momentum ran out in the quarterfinals, where they lost 3-1 on aggregate to a dominant West German side.

The 1978 World Cup witnessed Spain's first World Cup appearance since 1966. Spain qualified by defeating Yugoslavia home and away and losing only to Romania in Bucharest. In the final tournament Spain were drawn into group 3 with Brazil, Austria, and Sweden. Spain started the finals by losing 2-1 to Austria, but kept their hopes alive drawing with Brazil 0-0 and defeating Sweden 1-0. But it was too little too late for Spain and they didn't proceed out of the group.

Euro 80 saw Spain qualify for the first eight-team European championship. After surpassing Romania, Yugoslavia, and Cyprus, Spain was drawn into group B with England, Italy, and Belgium. Spain gained only one point after a draw with Italy and again exited without reaching the quarterfinals.

1982 World Cup in Spain

In 1976 Spain was selected as host of the 1982 FIFA World Cup. This edition of the World Cup featured 24 teams for the first time. Expectations were high for Spain as the host nation under coach José Santamaría. In the group stages, Spain was drawn into Group 5 with Northern Ireland, Yugoslavia, and Honduras. Under pressure to perform well, Spain struggled through their group. On their first day of competition, they could only manage a 1-1 draw with unfancied Honduras. They picked up momentum with an impressive 2-1 victory over Yugoslavia but were defeated 1-0 by Northern Ireland. Despite the defeat, Spain progressed to the second round where they were drawn into Group B with West Germany and England. Spain's campaign ended when they were defeated by West Germany 2-1 and drew 0-0 with England, and as disappointment swept the country, Santamaría was sacked.

1984 to 1988

After a disappointing World Cup campaign on home soil, Spain were desperate to regain their credibility on the world footballing stage. Former Real Madrid coach Miguel Muñoz, who had temporarily coached Spain in 1969, returned to the national side. Spain topped Euro 84 qualifying Group 7, which consisted of the Netherlands, Republic of Ireland, Iceland, and Malta. Spain passed the qualifying stage unexpectedly, as they had to defeat Malta by at least 11 goals to surpass the Netherlands for the top spot in the group. After going into the half leading Malta 3-1, Spain scored 9 goals in the second half to win by 12-1 and conquer the group. In the final tournament, Spain were dubbed as outsiders by bookmakers despite many talented players and a strong football league. Spain were drawn into group B with West Germany, Portugal, and Romania. In their first game, they drew 1-1 with underdogs Romania. Three days later they drew 1-1 again with Portugal. Spain topped the group with an impressive 1-0 victory over West Germany to avenge their defeat two years earlier. The semifinals saw Spain paired with darkhorses Denmark. With the game ending 1-1 after extra time, Spain defeated Denmark 5-4 on penalties after Preben Elkjær shot over the bar. Going beyond anyone's expectations Spain reached the final to face the hosts and tournament favorites France. Led by captain Michel Platini, France were tipped as heavy favorites and defeated Spain 2-0 after a goalless first half.

To build on their impressive Euro 84 performance, Muñoz helped Spain qualify for the 1986 World Cup in Mexico. Spain progressed in qualifying having topped Group 7 with Scotland, Wales, and Iceland. Muñoz took Spain to Mexico with a mixed squad of new and veteran players. Spain's group in the final tournament consisted of Brazil, Northern Ireland, and Algeria. Spain began the tournament nervously losing to Brazil 1-0. However, they progressed after beating Northern Ireland by 2-1 and Algeria by 3-0. Round 2 paired Spain with Denmark which had swept its group with three victories. In what was one of the strangest World Cup games, Spain defeated Denmark 5-1 with Emilio Butragueño scoring four goals. Spain progressed to the quarterfinals to face a Belgian side fresh off an impressive 4-3 victory over the USSR. The game finished 1-1 after 90 minutes and — with neither side scoring in extra time — proceeded to penalty kicks. Spain's 1986 campaign ended with Belgium winning 5-4 on penalties. Despite their quarterfinal exit, the squad of 1986 was Spain's highest-scoring national team until 2008.

Muñoz was retained as coach for Euro 88. As in the several previous tournaments Spain qualified impressively in a group with Austria, Romania, and Albania. Spain were drawn into group A with West Germany, Italy, and Denmark. They began their tournament with a 3-2 victory over Denmark. However, their luck ended when they were knocked-out in the group stage after losing 1-0 and 2-0 to Italy and West Germany, respectively.

1990 to 1992

The 90s began with Spain looking to perform well and compensate for poor performances at Euro 88 at the 1990 World Cup in Italy. For 1990, Spain's new coach Luis Suárez selected many new players including Manuel Jiménez, Genar Andrinúa, and Martín Vázquez. Spain qualified from a group consisting of Republic of Ireland, Hungary, Northern Ireland, and Malta. Before the tournament Spain looked impressive by going almost undefeated in their friendly and qualifier games. In the final tournament Spain was in group E with Belgium, Uruguay, and Korea Republic. Spain began with a less than impressive 0-0 draw with Uruguay. They later defeated Korea 3-1 and avenged Belgium 2-1 after 1986. Spain's impressive first round performance was tarnished by a 2-1 defeat to Yugoslavia in the second round. As a result Spain exited earlier than expected having disappointed their fans for not improving on their 1986 campaign.

Further disappointment followed when newly appointed coach Vicente Miera failed to qualify Spain for Euro 92 after finishing third in a group behind France and Czechoslovakia. Vicente Miera did however lead Spain to the gold medal at the 1992 OlympicsSince 1992, squads for Football at the Summer Olympics have been restricted to three players over the age of 23. The achievements of such teams are not usually included in the statistics of the international team.] in Barcelona.

Clemente's reign, 1992-98

Javier Clemente was appointed as Spain's coach in 1992 in hopes of bringing home a major international trophy. The 1994 World Cup was once again a testing ground for Spain's ability to perform well at the senior level. Spain qualified very impressively with nineteen points from twelve matches, a twenty three goal differential, and ranked as number five in Europe. In the final tournament Spain were drawn in Group C with Germany, Bolivia, and Korea Republic. The Spaniards were expected to easily progress to the second round alongside Germany. In their first game Spain drew with Korea 2-2 having given up a 2-0 lead. Three days later they drew 1-1 with Germany also giving up the lead. Spain qualified for the second round as expected with a 3-1 victory over Bolivia. Spain continued their success in the second round with a 3-0 victory over Switzerland. Their success ended with a controversial 2-1 defeat to Italy in the quarter-finals. A nasty and bloody foul committed by Mauro Tassotti towards Luis Enrique left the Spanish midfielder's nose broken in the penalty box, but with no penalty call given, Roberto Baggio would score the game winner for Italy in the last minutes. The 1994 campaign was seen as one of Spain's best despite the disappointment. Spain were once again left searching for a performance beyond the quarter-finals.

Clemente was hoping to build on their impressive yet disappointing performance in 1994 to perform well at Euro 96. Spain qualified as expected with impressive results from their group consisting of Denmark, Belgium, Cyprus, Macedonia, and Armenia. The final tournament witnessed Spain in a group with France, Romania, and Bulgaria. Their first game once again proved to be below expectations as they failed to beat Bulgaria and drew 1-1. After Bulgaria, Spain faced what proved to be a very strong French side but fought to sluggish 1-1 draw. Spain confirmed their place in the quarter-finals with a 2-1 win over a weak Romanian squad. In their quarter-final match with host England, Spain ran out of luck as they had a pair of goals questionably disallowed and were denied two possible penalties. [cite web|url = http://www.thefa.com/euro2004/History/Postings/2003/01/36689.htm |title = TheFA.com - 1996 European Championship |accessdate = 2008-06-30] Spain eventually fell 4-2 in the shootout.

In his second World Cup as Spain's coach, Clemente put his team through intensive training to try to put themselves as serious contenders to do well at the 1998 World Cup in France after yet another dismal performance at Euro 96. Many new rising stars such as Raúl González and Fernando Morientes were giving Spanish fans hope for the upcoming tournament. Despite falling in the world rankings to a record low before the World Cup, Spain went undefeated in their qualifying group with Yugoslavia and Czech Republic being the other contenders. Spain qualified with fourteen other European sides in the first ever thirty-two team World Cup. Group D consisted of Spain, Bulgaria, Paraguay, and Nigeria, many considered this group to be the Group of Death of the entire tournament. In their first game against African powers Nigeria, Spain led 1-0 and 2-1 in each half with much superiority. However, Nigeria amazingly turned the game around in the last twenty minutes and won 3-2 largely in part by an error made by all-time capped Spanish goalkeeper Andoni Zubizarreta. This defeat left Spain's hopeful campaign in ruins and sent Javier Clemente searching for answers. Their second game was a minor improvement, but left Spanish fans disappointed once again as Spain could only manage a 0-0 draw with Paraguay. After only a point from their first two games, Spain needed to rely on Nigeria and Paraguay drawing their match in order to qualify. In their last group game Spain fought valiantly to crush Bulgaria 6-1 hoping that goal differential would send them through. Spain's hopes did not go as planned as Paraguay defeated Nigeria 3-1. Spain were eliminated in the first round with only four points and finished third behind Paraguay and Nigeria. This was by far one of the most disappointing Spanish campaigns in recent times.

Euro 2000 and World Cup 2002

After a 3-2 opening defeat to Cyprus in Euro 2000 qualifying Clemente was sacked and José Antonio Camacho was promptly appointed as coach. Camacho immediately turned Spain's campaign around and Spain won the rest of their games to qualify for Euro 2000, including two 9-0 wins against Austria and San Marino. Once again Spain's hopes rested on a new coach and young players such as Raúl González, Fernando Morientes, Míchel Salgado, and Juan Carlos Valerón. Spain again were going to a major competition as one of the contenders for the title. In the final tournament Spain were in group C with Norway, Slovenia, and Yugoslavia. As always, Spain started their campaign with disappointment, losing 1-0 to the Norwegians. But Spain got back into the tournament with a 2-1 victory over the Slovenians. Their last game proved to be another nerve wreck as they looked to be going out of the tournament. Their last game was against Balkan powerhouse Yugoslavia. Spain started the match nervously by going down 1-0 with a goal from Yugoslav forward Savo Milošević. Alfonso Pérez was able to put a goal back for Spain in the 38th minute ending the first half with a 1-1 score. However, shortly after halftime Spain went down again 2-1 but made it 2-2 on 51 minutes with a goal by Pedro Munitis. Spain went down yet again for the third time, with the score 3-2 at 75 minutes. With only fifteen minutes left Spain desperately searched for an equalizer. After throwing every player forward Spain was still down 3-2, but at the 90th minute another Spanish goal from a late penalty by Gaizka Mendieta and a dramatic second goal by Alfonso Pérez in the dying seconds of stoppage time astonishingly turned the game around making the final score 4-3 for Spain. Spain finished at the top of group C to book a quarterfinal clash with 1998 World Cup Champions, France. After the thrilling clash with Yugoslavia, Spain were confident in shocking the world champions. The game began with a dramatic first half with bombardment of both goals. The half ended 2-1 for the French. However, late in the second half Spain was awarded a penalty. Raúl González took the spot kick but shot over the crossbar. Despite a strong Spanish attack France held on to win and knock Spain out prematurely. Disappointment and sadness swept Spain as the team could not impress their fans and suffered yet another quarterfinal exit.

Spain hoped once again for a good World Cup impression in 2002 in the Far East. Qualifying went as expected for Spain as they topped an easy group consisting of Austria, Israel, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Liechtenstein. Under Camacho Spain hoped that lessons learned from Euro 2000 would bring them better luck. But for Santiago Cañizares it was bad luck. Right before the competition started, he got injured and couldn't participate as the starting goalkeeper. This gave the 21 year old Iker Casillas the starting position. In the final tournament Spain were drawn into group B with Slovenia, Paraguay, and South Africa. This time Spain began the World Cup very strongly with 3-1 victories over Slovenia and Paraguay and a 3-2 victory over South Africa. This was also the first time since the 1950 World Cup that Spain started the competition with a win. A lot of supporters saw this as a sign (since Spain's best ever finish in a world cup was at the 1950 world cup, finishing 4th). Spain topped the group with nine points to face off a second round contest with the Republic of Ireland. An early goal from Spanish striker Fernando Morientes gave hope to the Spaniards. With just stoppage time remaining after the 90th minute, Fernando Hierro brought Robbie Keane down in the penalty box and Ireland was awarded a penalty. The same man who had been fouled pulled the Irish level and the game went to extra-time where, unexpectedly, Spain was left with nine players on the field due to back-to-back injuries and no more sub-ins available. However, Spain were able to hold on and force the penalty shoot-out, where the young Iker Casillas proved himself worthy of the starting goalkeeper spot, stopping three penalties. Spain came out on top with a 3-2 victory. Spain booked a quarterfinal berth with hosts Korea Republic who upset Italy in round two. Spanish fans were confident this was the year Spain was to progress beyond the quarterfinals in any major tournament since Euro 84. After a hard fought 120 minutes and two disallowed goals for the Spaniards (The referee disallowed Fernando Morientes' goal on the ground that the ball had gone out of play. However replays showed that the ball was still in play.), Spain faced another penalty shootout. Spain scored three penalties as did Korea. However, Spain's worst nightmare became reality after Joaquín had his penalty saved. Korea scored their last two penalties through Ahn Jung-Hwan and Hong Myung-Bo to knock Spain out of the 2002 World Cup. Spanish fans were shocked by another successive, and highly controversial, quarterfinal exit.

Euro 2004

At Euro 2004 in Portugal, Spain were drawn into group A with Portugal, Russia and Greece. After coming into second after Greece in qualifying, Spain looked very strong. The Spanish team were touted as heavy favorites for the 2004 crown by the European media. They possessed new and fresh players such as Fernando Torres and Xabi Alonso under new coach Iñaki Sáez. Spain were also hoping that the tournaments proximity would contribute to their success. On June 12, Spain expectedly defeated Russia, 1-0, the goal scored by Juan Carlos Valerón just 36 seconds after coming on with various opportunities to increase the victory, [http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/euro_2004/3787463.stm Spain 1-0 Russia] ] such as a miss kick from Joseba Etxeberría against a virtually open goal, and a disallowed goal from Xabi Alonso for tapping the ball with his hand after heading it over Sergei Ovchinnikov. Four days later Spain faced Greece. Determined to win, Spain led the match until Greece scored an equalizer and the match ended 1-1. In their last game against Portugal, Spain needed to draw to qualify for the quarterfinals. However, a goal from Nuno Gomes faded Spain's hopes of advancing. The same day Greece were defeated 2-1 by Russia but moved ahead to claim second place on goal difference. As a result Spain were eliminated from Euro 2004 in the first round that consisted of the tournament's eventual finalists in Portugal and Greece. This exit was considered the most disappointing result since the 1998 World Cup. Iñaki Sáez was sacked only weeks later and replaced by Luis Aragonés.

Luis Aragonés era, 2006 World Cup and Euro 2008 Champions

Under Luis Aragonés, Spain struggled throughout the 2006 World Cup qualifying stage. Spain were in group 7 with Serbia & Montenegro, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Belgium, Lithuania, and San Marino. Despite mixed results including five wins and draws, Spain qualified for a playoff spot with Slovakia. Spain qualified for the final tournament after defeating Slovakia 6-2 on aggregate. Many didn't know what to expect of Spain heading into Germany; despite almost failing to qualify, the Spanish side had many talented players. Spain were drawn into Group H with Ukraine, Saudi Arabia, and Tunisia. Spain won their opening game over Ukraine in a comfortable 4-0 result, with two goals from David Villa and one each for Fernando Torres and Xabi Alonso. The first penalty of the tournament was awarded after Vladislav Vaschuk was sent off for pulling on Torres. Spain won their second game against Tunisia 3-1. A goal in the 8th minute through Jawhar Mnari put Tunisia ahead, but Spain scored through Raúl in the 71st min and Fernando Torres in the 76th min. Fernando Torres scored from the penalty spot in injury time to get his second goal in the game. Spain beat Saudi Arabia by 1-0 in Kaiserslautern on the 23 June. However Spain fell 3-1 in the second round by the more experienced France team, despite having led the game 1-0 after a penalty kick scored by David Villa. Spanish fans once again faced a premature exit and a performance below expectations. Spain and Brazil shared the 2006 FIFA Fair Play Award.

Spain qualified for Euro 2008 at the top of Qualifying Group F with 28 points out of a possible 36, and were seeded 12th for the actual competition. They were drawn in Group D, with Sweden, Russia and the reigning champions Greece. Spain won all of their group games and finished top of their group, with David Villa scoring the only hat-trick of the competition in the 4–1 defeat of Russia. Afer beating Sweden 2-1 (with Villa scoring the winner in injury time), the game against Greece became a formality and Spain won 2-1 using their reserves (10 of their starting 11 were not part of the usual first team).

Reigning World Cup holders Italy were the opponents in the quarter final match and held Spain to a finished 0–0 draw resulting in a penalty shoot-out. Iker Casillas saved two penalties as Spain won the shoot-out 4–2. This was the first time that Spain had beaten Italy in a competitive match since 1920, and also broke Spain's record of losing penalty shoot-outs on 22 June - previous losses were against Belgium in the 1986 World Cup, England in Euro '96, and South Korea in the 2002 World Cup.

Spain met Russia again in the semi-final, once again beating them, this time by 3-0. In the final, played in Vienna's Ernst-Happel-Stadion, Spain were up against three-times champions Germany. Spain won 1–0 with a goal scored by Fernando Torres in the 33rd minute. This was Spain's first major title in 44 years since the 1964 European Championship. Spain's total of 12 goals in the tournament made them the top scoring team and striker David Villa finished as the top scorer with four goals. Xavi was awarded the player of the tournament. Nine Spanish players were picked for the UEFA Euro 2008 Team of the Tournament, goalkeeper and captain Iker Casillas, defenders Carles Puyol, Carlos Marchena, midfielders Xavi, Cesc Fabregas, Andrés Iniesta, Marcos Senna and strikers David Villa and Fernando Torres.

Spain ended the tournament as the only unbeaten team to win since Germany in 1996 and the only group winner to advance beyond the quarterfinals in Euro 2008 as Portugal, Croatia, and the Netherlands were all eliminated at that stage. Also, before Spain in Euro 2008, only France in 1984 had won all their group games and later went on to win the tournament. Due to their highly impressive performance at the tournament, Spain was awarded the first place at the FIFA World rankings for the first time in their history on July 1st, 2008, just two days after being crowned European Champions for the second time. They became only the sixth team to share this privilege along with Argentina, Brazil, France, Germany, and Italy and also the first team never to have won a World Cup to achieve this.

Luis Aragonés became the oldest coach to win a European Championship and the second to win one with Spain after José Villalonga won it in 1964 on home soil. 27-year-old Iker Casillas became the first goalkeeper-captain to lift up the trophy. Aragonés also enjoys the distinction of having led Spain to the most victories, a record previously held by Javier Clemente. Aragonés has won 38, drawn 12, and lost only 4 out of 54 matches in charge, compared to 36 victories, 20 draws, and 6 defeats by Clemente.

2010 FIFA World Cup qualification

On March 11, 2008, Vicente Del Bosque announced that starting June 29, he would replace Luis Aragonés who left the job due that he did not feel the Spanish Football Federation wanted him to continue. [ [http://www.skysports.com/story/0,19528,12010_3766624,00.html Aragones reveals Spain snub] ] It took until 15 July, 2008 for Del Bosque to be officially comfirmed as the new coach. [ [http://www.skysports.com/story/0,19528,12024_3823638,00.html Spain appoint Del Bosque] ] For the friendly against Denmark on 20 August 2008, the Spanish Football Federation asked Del Bosque to call up the same 23 players who were chosen to represent Spain at Euro 2008 as a tribute to their success, however, [ [http://translate.google.com/translate?u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.as.com%2Ffutbol%2Farticulo%2Feurocopa-futbol-bosque-citara-23%2Fdasftb%2F20080703dasdaiftb_36%2FTes&hl=en&ie=UTF8&sl=es&tl=en Del Bosque to summon the 23 champions to face Denmark] ] due to injuries suffered by Andrés Palop, Cesc Fàbregas and Carlos Marchena, they could not be selected, Del Bosque chose to bring only two goalkeepers and replaced Marchena with Fernando Amorebieta, Cesc Fàbregas with Diego Capel and also decided to replace Álvaro Arbeloa with Andoni Iraola and Sergio García with Bojan Krkić due to technical reasons. Spain won the match 3-0.

Spain under Del Bosque began their 2010 FIFA World Cup Qualification campaign succesfully, they defeated Bosnia and Herzegovina 1-0 with a goal from David Villa and defeated Armenia 4-0, three days later, with a notable debut from Bojan Krkić coming on as a substitute and defeating rumours that he will swap allegiances to Serbia, and two goals coming from David Villa, and one each from Joan Capdevila and Marcos Senna thus securing the Spaniards a first place spot in their group with 6 points.

Competitive record

World Cup record

:"*Denotes draws include knockout matches decided on penalty kicks.":"**Gold background color indicates that the tournament was won. Red border color indicates tournament was held on home soil."

pain national football team head to head

*

Recent results and forthcoming fixtures

FIFA World Cup qualification

2010 FIFA World Cup qualification - UEFA Group 5
expanded = yes
fixtures = yes
tiebreakers =

Friendly Matches

footballbox
date = Feb 6, 2008
time = 21:00
team1 = Spain flagicon|Spain
score = 1 – 0
report = [http://soccernet.espn.go.com/match?id=235250 Report]
team2 = flagicon|France France
goals1 = Joan Capdevila goal|78
goals2 =
stadium = La Rosaleda, Malaga, Spain
attendance = 30,000
referee = Tony Asumaa
----

footballbox
date = March 26, 2008
time = 22:00
team1 = Spain flagicon|Spain
score = 1 – 0
report = [http://soccernet.espn.go.com/match?id=238081 Report]
team2 = flagicon|Italy Italy
goals1 = David Villa goal|77
goals2 =
stadium = Estadio Manuel Martinez Valero, Elche, Spain
attendance = 38,000
referee = Fritz Stuchlik
----

footballbox
date = May 31, 2008
time = 22:00
team1 = Spain flagicon|Spain
score = 2 – 1
report = [http://soccernet.espn.go.com/match?id=238898 Report]
team2 = flagicon|Peru Peru
goals1 = David Villa goal|37
Joan Capdevila goal|90
goals2 = Hernan Rengifo goal|73
stadium = Santiago Bernabéu Stadium, Madrid, Spain
attendance = 17,500
referee = Dimitar Meckarovski
----

footballbox
date = June 4, 2008
time = 22:00
team1 = Spain flagicon|Spain
score = 1 – 0
report = [http://soccernet.espn.go.com/match?id=238274 Report]
team2 = flagicon|USA USA
goals1 = Xavi goal|78
goals2 =
stadium = El Sardinero, Santander, Spain
attendance = 15,000
referee = Sokol Jareci
----

footballbox
date = August 20, 2008
time = 20:15
team1 = Denmark flagicon|Denmark
score = 0 – 3
report = [http://soccernet.espn.go.com/match?id=234453 Report]
team2 = flagicon|Spain Spain
goals1 =
goals2 = Xabi Alonso goal|50
Xavi goal|73
Xabi Alonso goal|90
stadium = Parken Stadion, Copenhagen, Denmark
attendance = 26,155
referee = Martin Hansson
----

Top goalscorers of 2008

As of September 10, 2008:

Recent call ups

The following players have been called up for the team in 2008.

:"Bold denotes players still playing or available for selection."

Most capped Spain players

As of September 10, 2008, the ten players with the most caps for Spain are:

:"Bold denotes players still playing or available for selection."

elected Managers

"see also List of Spain national football team managers and cl|Spain national football team managers"
* Francisco Bru, 1920
* Pedro Parages, 1923-1924
* Paulino Alcántara,1951
* Ricardo Zamora, 1952
* Pedro Escartín Morán, 1952-1961
* Helenio Herrera, 1959-1962
* José Villalonga, 1962-1966
* Domingo Balmanya, 1966-1968
* Luis Molowny, 1969
* Miguel Muñoz, 1969, 1982-1988
* Ladislao Kubala, 1969-1980
* José Santamaría, 1980-1982
* Luis Suárez, 1988-1991
* Vicente Miera, 1991-1992
* Javier Clemente, 1992-1998
* José Antonio Camacho, 1998-2002
* Iñaki Sáez, 2002-2004
* Luis Aragonés, 2004-2008
* Vicente Del Bosque, 2008-

ee also

* Spain national under-21 football team
* Spain national youth football team (Includes U-17 only)

References

External links

* [http://www.rfef.es/ RFEF site]
* [http://futbol.sportec.es/seleccion/ Information about the Spain national football team]
* [http://www.rsssf.com/tabless/span-intres.html RSSSF archive of results 1920-]
* [http://www.rsssf.com/miscellaneous/span-recintlp.html RSSSF archive of player records]
* [http://www.soccerway.com/news/2006/may/5/aragons-announces-preliminary-spanish-squad The confirmation of Luis Aragonés' preliminary squad]
* [http://www.teamvalenciaonline.com Official Fan Site]

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