Spain coach Vicente del Bosque has defended his striker-less formation in the media after choosing to start the 1-1 draw against Italy with no recognised forwards.
The former Real Madrid manager opted to play Cesc Fabregas in a ‘false nine’ position instead of selecting any of his three strikers – Fernando Torres, Alvaro Negredo and Fernando Llorente.
“We have three fantastic forwards but Cesc is also a good forward,” Del Bosque told Spanish radio station Cadena Ser.
“He has a lot of composure on the ball, he links up well with everyone and he gets into good scoring positions.”
Del Bosque was confident enough in his new tactic that he even suggested he might adopt the same approach against Ireland on Thursday.
“It’s possible we’ll play the same way. I don’t rule out putting someone up front but (playing without a striker) is an option we have,” he added.
Meanwhile, the man at the centre of La Selección’s new formation, Cesc Fabregas, has blasted the tournament organisers for not sufficiently watering the pitch before Sunday’s game.
Fabregas said: “It is lamentable that we have to play on a pitch like this. I don’t want to complain but we deserve much more.”
It is thought that the Spanish had asked for heavy watering of the pitch before yesterdays match-up, but their request was denied.
However, the President of the Polish FA, Grzegorz Lato, rejected Fabregas’s claims. He said: “What nonsense. The grass was the perfect length. The thing is that often one waters the pitch for the game but you need agreement from the two teams.
“The Spanish wanted it to be watered, the Italians did not agree.”
Spain take on the Republic of Ireland on Thursday at 7.45pm in their second Group C match and we await Del Bosque’s lineup and the state of the pitch.
(Original story: http://sportsbyte.sunderland.ac.uk/?p=15146)