Monday, June 27

Luis Enrique’s ‘four finalists’


  • The second edition of the League of Nations is decided this week in an attractive final phase with Italy, Spain, France and Belgium. The European champion competes at home after adding a historical record of 37 matches without losing.

It is not the Eurocup not much less a world. It is rather a UEFA invention to give seriousness to controversial team friendliesBut it must be recognized that the League of Nations has achieved its goal. What used to look like a Procedure that barely hooked the fans, now has a certain interest thanks to the level of the contenders.

The first champion was Portugal, which was crowned in Porto in 2019. This week the second will be known with the final four of Italy, precisely the team that was proclaimed champion of Europe in July against England in Wembley.

More competitiveness

The competition with the least tradition on the international national team scene tries to strengthen itself in a calendar full of matches. The first stone of its creation was laid in 2011 in a meeting in cyprus who opened a closed consultation three years later with the birth of the UEFA Nations League, approved in a congress held in Astana.

«UEFA and the associations wanted a Greater relevance of national team football, as coaches, players and fans increasingly feel that international friendlies are not providing a proper competition sports ”, reflects the organism as the origin of a tournament that distributes to the 55 federations in four leagues according to your classification. From there, promotions and relegation take place, guaranteeing matches of great interest.

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Troubled times

In Italy meet this week the champions of the four groups of the first category. In the final four the world champion (France), the queen of europe (Italy), the FIFA number one (Belgium) and Spain, who aspire to enjoy themselves in a troubled times in which all eyes are directed towards Luis Enrique, the coach who led the Red to the semifinals in the last continental round despite criticism, especially from the capital.

La Roja coincide in the final phase with the world champion (France), the queen of Europe (Italy) and the number one in FIFA (Belgium)

Italy crossed the path of Spain in the previous European Championship in a passionate semi-final at Wembley which was decided on penalties. La Roja and La Azzurra will fight again tomorrow for a gap in Sunday’s final at San Siro, the stadium that will also host the pulse on Wednesday.

An award for the Red

Italy starts as a favorite against a Spain with doubts. Compete at home and accumulate 37 games without losing (28 wins, 9 draws), a historical record that surpasses the marks of 36 encounters of Spain (2007-2009) and Brazil (1993-1995). His last defeat occurred on September 10, 2018, precisely in the League of Nations against Portugal (0-1).

“Spain was the rival we fought the most during the Euro. It is a good team with good players. It would be incredible win the Nations after the Eurocup », he assures Roberto Mancini, ready to achieve the double in a brilliant 2021. “Being in the final phase is a prize that we have won. Because I don’t feel pressure. The goal is to be champion let’s go It is a competition that motivates us and we would love to win ”, reflects Luis Enrique.

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Looking at the World Cup

Spain commanded its group of the League of Nations by in front of Germany (which they thrashed 6-0), Switzerland and Ukraine, which was the only one capable of defeating it. With 13 goals, she is the second highest scorer of the tournament, only surpassed by Belgium (16). The final four arrives one month before the challenge that most worries Luis Enrique. «In November we played being in the World Cup, the greatest motivation for a player. I love that there is media noise, It means that we are playing important things, ”says the Spaniard.

Related news

In San Siro there will be no lack of references to the latest success of the azzurra, such as the meta Donnarumma, the veterans Bonucci and Chiellini, or the dangerous church. No less interesting will be the cast of Thursday’s pulse in Turin, in which France will try to make up for its failure in the last European Championship, in which they fell in the round of 16 against Switzerland when they clearly aspired to the title.

With Mbappé, Benzema and Griezmann in front, the bleus will play it with the Belgium of Lukaku, Eden Hazard and De Bruyne. Robert Martínez’s block was already eliminated from the last World Cup by the French, who now aspire to the throne of the youngest UEFA national team tournament.

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