Euro 2012: Clean bill of health for reigning champions Spain

Fit again – Cesc Fabregas

Spain go into today’s opening Group C match with Italy with a full squad after Barcelona’s Cesc Fabregas passed a late fitness test.

The Spanish also had worries over Alvaro Arbeloa and Sevilla winger Jesus Navas, but both are expected to be declared fit for what is arguably their toughest group match.

Whether Fabregas starts for La Roja remains to be seen, with Juan Mata, David Silva, Santi Cazorla and Navas all looking to join guaranteed starters Xavi and Andres Iniesta in the Spanish midfield.

The former Arsenal play-maker has been trying to overcome a hamstring strain he picked up in Barcelona’s 3-0 Kings Cup victory over Athletic Bilbao in the final game of the season.

Former Liverpool man Arbeloa should be in line for a start against Italy, should, as reports suggest, he is passed fit having overcome a back problem. This would allow Real Madrid’s Sergio Ramos to partner Barcelona’s Gerard Pique at the heart of the Spanish defence.

Fabregas, 25, comes into the competition in confident mood. He told the Times of India: “”I want to make history. I want to be the first team to win a treble of European Championships and World Cups. And why not? Right now we feel good.

“We know we can do it, and we are confident in ourselves. Winning two big trophies makes you very confident.”

Spain’s much awaited match against Italy will kick off at 5pm.

(Original post: http://sportsbyte.sunderland.ac.uk/?p=15073)

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