Sunday, June 20

The selection closes ranks with Morata after criticism for his lack of aim


Gerard Moreno, Villarreal forward, remains in the bedroom.  |  EFE

Gerard Moreno, Villarreal forward, remains in the bedroom. | EFE

The full match of the Spanish team against Portugal was only marred by the lack of a goal. The team competed well, but was not decisive and the spotlights pointed directly at Álvaro Morata. The shouts of a part of the fans singing “how bad you are!” After throwing a heads-up at the crossbar in the discount, they put the ram in the trigger, although indoors he has maximum support.

Morata was in charge of commanding Spain’s offensive operations in the friendly against Portugal played last Friday at the Wanda Metropolitano. | EFE


In the team they highly value Morata’s work, which is not on television. His unchecks, fight with rival centrals and effort to generate spaces for the rest are highly appreciated by his teammates.

Luis Enrique was the first to put down the lack of success of his forward. “I will never reproach a player for missing a chance, he is the first interested in scoring it,” he said. In addition, in the case of Morata he added that “you should get up and applaud until your stumps hurt” for the run of the last play to the crossbar. He also appreciated their “amazing work” and effort in the field.

Among the players there is the same conviction. Fabián Ruiz, for example, insisted after the game that “we trust him, he has done a great job.” Everyone knows the difficulty of playing as a center forward in the national team and that transmitting tranquility is key.

In addition, the numbers support Morata as he has scored 19 goals in 40 games with the national team, that is, an average of almost one goal every two games. The average is high, although some somewhat rude mistakes have led to the despair of the public, especially during the last one.

Luis Enrique has always defended him tooth and nail. Since the first match of this qualifying round of the Eurocup against Norway in Valencia in 2019 when he publicly said that “I put a 9 on Morata, not 10 because he has not had the fortune to score, but he has played an almost perfect match ». That night he also lacked aim, as against Portugal, but he was also very active.

In any case, Spain has Gerard Moreno in the bedroom. The Villarreal striker also credited a good scoring average in his initial stage with La Roja. Gerard has scored five goals in eleven games and is thrilled after winning the Europa League. His 23 goals in the League have allowed him to revalidate the Zarra trophy for the top Spanish scorer in the League. In Europe he scored 7 for a total of 30.

Ferran Torres, the Pichichi

When talking about the goal, normally the gaze is directed towards the center forward, but this responsibility must be more distributed. At least this is Luis Enrique’s approach and it has worked for him to date. The best example can be seen with the fact that the Picichi of the second era of the Asturian at the head of the national team is not a born nine, but is Ferran Torres. The Manchester City player, who moves mainly on the right wing, has scored six goals since September and has become an essential footballer for the national team.

Adama Traoré, the only casualty

The team returned to training in the Ciudad del Fútbol with a recovery session for the players who started the first friendly in preparation for the Eurocup, the draw against Portugal, with Aymeric Laporte in good condition and Adama Traoré on the sidelines of the group . Luis Enrique takes care of the physical wear of his players in detail, to whom he will grant the Sunday off. In addition, those who started against Portugal and had greater wear at the Wanda Metropolitano stadium, released their legs in the main training field of the sports city of the national team before a recovery session.

In this way, Marcos Llorente, Laporte, Pau Torres, José Luis Gayá, Sergio Busquets, Thiago, Fabián, Ferrán Torres, Álvaro Morata and Pablo Sarabia worked with less intensity than the rest of the internationals and put themselves in the hands of the physiotherapists to recover the wear on your legs.

Laporte, who requested the change on the day of his premiere with Spain, is in good condition, according to reports from the concentration of the Spanish team, and what he felt were cramps that made him be cautious and avoid any muscle problem ten days after start of the Eurocup. Adama Traoré is the only footballer who is still not in full condition. On Saturday he continued his solo work with the recuperator Lorenzo Del Pozo in training behind closed doors.

His presence on Tuesday in the last friendly in Spain, the one that will play in Butarque against Lithuania, remains doubtful. Luis Enrique has no intention of forcing a footballer who goes to the Eurocup with the role of revulsive and to provide overflow.


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