Before the decisive match against Slovakia, Luis Enrique he confessed to having the feeling that “the cava stopper” was about to give way. And so it happened. Spain achieved a historic ‘little hand’ to which it contributed, in addition to the rival goalkeeper, a clear improvement in the definition of the game, which logically facilitated the completion. Of course, the ‘uncork’ occurred against a minor team and in a game that, having done their homework against Sweden Y Poland, it should have been a pure process. You know, the typical meeting that in other times would have been used to play Pepe Reina

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When Luis Enrique used the simile of cava, he must have been referring to Catalan cava, because not in vain the greatest hits of the Selection are linked to the contribution that FC Barcelona has made Spanish football in recent years. With great individualities, but, above all, with some essential collective concepts in a team sport such as football, even though it may not seem so many times. The passage of the Asturian through the second and the first Barça team, in a different way from that of Pep Guardiola, because in between he trained Roma Y Celtic, it left him very marked and it is normal that in the National Team he has wanted to maintain that idea. Although, of course, to carry it out before you have to have (and select) the necessary footballers.

Known is that Luis Enrique has a reputation as an anti-Madridista and, the fact that in the list for the Eurocopa there was no player of the Real Madrid for the first time in the history of the National Team, he enlivened that legend. With Carvajal it is included Lucas Vazquez injured and Sergio Ramos coming out of a year complicated by both physical and contractual problems, it could have led to Nacho, although it is not a central of the characteristics that you like. He was recognized by the sports director and at the same time the president of Real Madrid. “It so happened that the three who were better placed were injured. Nacho? He is not a starter in Madrid and Luis Enrique must have thought that he did not have to go,” he said. Florentino Pérez in Onda Cero. From the season of Isco, better not to talk, and Asensio It has not been at their level for a long time.

The influence of Barça in Spain

By cons, The most important player for Luis Enrique, and this has been demonstrated in the first phase of the Eurocup, is Sergio Busquets, the last exponent next to Jordi Alba, and who has now joined Pedri, of the great contribution of Barça to football in Spain. If we look back at the Euro 2008, with Luis Aragones At the head of La Roja, there were four Barça players who were very important in winning the title and, above all, in the radical and decisive change that Spanish football gave. To the Puyol, Xavi, Iniesta and Cesc Fàbregas would join in the World Cup 2010, already with Vicente del Bosque on the bench and Pep Guardiola in that of Barça, Piqué, Jordi Alba, Busquets, Pedro, Villa, although recently signed from Valencia, and even the goalkeeper Victor Valdes. That is, almost a whole eleven.

Pedri, Busquets, Jordi Alba and Dani Olmo celebrate a goal. (EFE)

We arrive at Euro 2012, again with title and football exhibition of Spain, and then there were eight FC Barcelona players who repeated on Del Bosque’s list, namely, Víctor Valdés, Piqué, Jordi Alba, Busquets, Xavi, Iniesta, Cesc and Pedro, as Villa could not go due to an injury and Puyol left the National Team after returning from South Africa. “All they do is pass the ball from one side to the other. They don’t have a single player who knows how to give a definitive pass, “he said. Van der Vaart about the football of the Luis Enrique National Team. It sounded harsh, but the Dutchman was right.

Against Slovakia, the entry into the eleven of Busquets, and the triangle that formed with Pedri and Jordi Alba, gave meaning to football. As if that were not enough, from behind they played as centrals Eric García Y Aymeric Laporte, both disciples of Guardiola in the Manchester CityIn the absence of great figures, Spain needs a good collective structure that allows it to define the game in order to finish it better. As an axiom of soccer says, a play requires as few passes as possible, but without one less than necessary. And this, today, despite not being in full physical condition due to age and after having recently passed the covid, is only contributed by footballers like Sergio Busquets, who it should be remembered that some gave up …

Photo: Florentino Pérez and Josep Maria Bartomeu, with the image of Cruyff in the background.  (CordonPress)
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“Now it is not seen well to say it, but the Catalans are the host. They are well ahead of what Spain is in general. They are polite, respectful, hard-working … “, Luis Enrique commented to the cyclist Ibon Zugasti in an interview on his YouTube channel during the dispute of the Cape Epic, mountain biking test in pairs. These statements should not be taken out of context, although there is no doubt that in the case of the Spanish soccer team they do not clash. Although to be more exact, the Asturian’s exaltation would be more towards the Barça players, the club in which he put the seed Johan Cruyff from which the golden age of Spanish football flourished.

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