Wednesday, August 4

The electric bench of Spain


There is no calm with Spain. Nor with his bench, immersed in a traumatic transit for a long time. Not even in his period of greatest possible success, with the conquest of Euro 2008, with Luis Aragones, the ideologue of the cultural change of Spanish football, joined the 2010 World Cup and 2012 Eurocup with Vicente del Bosque, the patient heir who improved that legacy, found La Roja the tranquility it needs.

There is even less calm now, forced as it is to successfully remodel, but without the wonderful pieces from before (nor a trace of another Boxyes, a new Xavi or another is perceived Iniesta, no sign of that lethal town or crafty towers), a selection that comes from the desert. Arid and rough land that he met in Brazil-2014, he later repeated in the European Championship in France in 2016 or in the World Cup in Russia-2018, symbols of the regressive journey of a Spain that no longer dominates or governs as it did before, almost in a dictatorial, with the ball.

For one reason or another, La Roja’s bench has become an electric chair, similar to that of any club, which burns every coach. Even Luis, the revolutionary who opened the path of excellence, came out in a bad way in 2008 when he wanted to continue and discovered then that the federation had already chosen Del Bosque. Curiously, the man from Salamanca has been the oldest in the recent period of the national team. Eight years he resisted.

Del Bosque has been the longest-serving coach in recent years. Was eight

In the first four he raised Spain to the top of Everest, achieving universal recognition, traveling to memory and, at the same time, exercising a utopia for the rest of the Spains that have come. And they will come. The last four years in which he witnessed in the front row the disaster of Brazil-2014 and the lost opportunity of France-2016, an already inexcusable sign that the times of bonanza and full happiness had ended. The magical parenthesis, not reached by any other team in the world, lasted between 2008 and 2012. It was perfection.

The Krasnodar Schism

Since then, Spain has lived, and already permanently, in search of what it was. And who knows if it will never be again. Lopetegui arrived, a different technician. Vicente’s pause and wisdom contrasted with the nerve and vertigo that Julen gave off at the foot of the field. He signed an excellent path to the World Cup in Russia without knowing then that at that very moment he was certifying a final so traumatic that not even his work with Sevilla, whom he has led to great conquests in the League and in the Europa League, will allow him forget everything that happened in Krasnodar, the Russian city that he had to secretly leave just 48 hours before the start of the tournament. He had signed with Madrid without notifying Luis Rubiales, the president of the federation, who fired him abruptly.

Hierro, who was the interim coach in the 2018 World Cup in Russia, and Robert Moreno, are the two most fleeting steps for ‘La Roja’

Hierro, who was the federative sports director, hung the suit in the closet, put on his tracksuit and led Spain in four games: a victory, three draws and back home without leaving any trace in Russia, the team immersed in the routine of failure. The exciting era of Luis Enrique began then, although the revolution he had designed was quickly and sadly cut short. Only 11 months, 10 encounters and a road abruptly parked due to the tragic illness of her daughter, who ended up dying.

The fleeting step of Robert Moreno, the Asturian’s assistant, both in Roma, Celta and Barça, to whom he later did not forgive his lack of loyalty. Only six games was the Catalan coach.

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Even in his absence, “the project always belonged to LuisEnrique”, as he used to remember Rubiales. And a little over a year ago, March 2020, Lucho returned to his place. To the bench of La Roja. An increasingly uncomfortable bench because the memory of that unforgettable visit to paradise is still too close. That nostalgia anguish and torture its tenant.

The last Spanish coaches (2004 –…)

Luis Aragonés (2004-2008), won a European Championship

Vicente del Bosque (2008-2016), won a World Cup and a European Championship.

Julen Lopetegui (2016-2018).

Fernando Hierro (2018).

Luis Enrique (2018-2019).

Robert Moreno (2019).

Luis Enrique (2019 -…)


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