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Good test for our Euro ambitions next week with a tough test against Italy at Elche. Aragones has released his call up list and the biggest inclusion is De la Red :proud: Fernando Navarro has also been called up while Raul still remains out despite his hot season and Albelda is out as well. Full list:

- Arsenal: Cesc

- FC Barcelona: Puyol, Iniesta y Xavi

- Betis: Juanito

- Espanyol: Luis García y Riera

- Getafe: De la Red

- Liverpool: Arbeloa, Reina, Torres y Xabi Alonso

- Real Madrid: Casillas y Sergio Ramos

- Mallorca: Fernando Navarro y Güiza

- Valencia: Albiol, Marchena, Silva y Villa

- Villarreal: Capdevila y Senna

Probably line up:

------------Casillas--------

--Ramos--Puyol--Albiol--Capdevila-

------------Senna-------

----Iniesta---Cesc----Xavi---

-------Torres----Villa---
 

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Torres is doubtful, he was kicked like a mule in the game the other day and injured both his ankle and ribs. Its a shame I'd like to see both play together as I don't think its a case of not being able to play together, but more a case of learning how to play with one another. I think both have problems playing with a top class striker partner because almost always its been the case where they play as main striker of there team with crappy strike partners :wallbang:
 

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There's many out of form players on that list. Even Puyol's been playing like an escaped mental patient. Central defense remains a big problem, Juanito's past it, Albiol's losing it, Marchena's crazy (and probably carrying a massive headache from the weekend). Minimal width as well, Silva and Riera the only possiblities.
 

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Albiol's losing it?
Are you watching Valencia's recent games?

He's doing a decent job lately, he's even captain these days (when Baraja/marchena are out)
Marchena sucks as CB. And about the wingers, wtf is he doing without a right winger in the squad?
Oh yea Ramos can play as winger:wallbang:

Go Italy!
 

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Iniesta has been brilliant on the right for Spain in recent matches.
He's not a real right winger. Silva can play there as well.

At least have a real one as back up (the case with Riera).


With Torres out I can see Silva playing on the right and Iniesta on the left, Villa alone up top.

Villa can shift positions with any of Silva/Iniesta to confuse defences, midget fcukers:D Ironically Spain will score from a corner/cross from a free kick:D
 

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Aragones has released his call up list and the biggest inclusion is De la Red :proud:
I really think Granero deserved a call-up as well ;)
 

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Jarque should have been called up as well IMO.

VcDef, Aragones liks the "fake" wingers and they suit the Spanish style than the vintage wingers as they compliment the midfield more as they drift and collect the ball and participate in the build up than just stand on the wing and try the same action of killing the fullback over and over again. Its better for the fullbacks to give width and the wide mids to be free and able to help keep the ball and invent attacks.

Whats interesting is if Luis uses Silva in the midfield bank of the 4-3-3 and not the forward bank, he played there sometimes for Valencia but personally I think the midfield bank of three is a strong point and Silva doesn't need to play there as Cesc, Xavi, Xabi are all better in those positions.
 

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Likely Italy team

Buffon

Panucci Cannavaro Materazzi Zambrotta

De Rossi

Camoranesi Perrotta Pirlo Di Natale

Toni​
 

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Interesting to see Pirlo playing ahead of De Rossi, I always preffered him in the deep position, he can see the whole game and for Italy he moves up and down the pitch a lot more from the position, making it harder for the opposition to pick him up or trace him. I would liked to have seen Aquilani in there as well, the battle of the mids will still be good to watch. Italy are one of the few nations who still have a midfield who can play some football.

Also Di Natale out so wide seems a bit odd to me, he always seems better centrally. But mind you I haven't seen much of him in the NT colours.
 

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Well that formation is just on paper, the Italy team interchanges better than ever before since the World Cup. Di Natale helps defend on the left but more often than not is in the box while Pirlo and De Rossi will probably swap during the game.
 

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Torres is doubtful, he was kicked like a mule in the game the other day and injured both his ankle and ribs. Its a shame I'd like to see both play together as I don't think its a case of not being able to play together, but more a case of learning how to play with one another. I think both have problems playing with a top class striker partner because almost always its been the case where they play as main striker of there team with crappy strike partners :wallbang:
then i hope to see torres be rested in such games . :hopeful:
 

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I saw Albiol and Valencia at the weekend, and that was one of the worst defensive performances by any team I've seen this season. Pure luck, brilliant goalkeeping and bad finishing kept the score to only 2.

But I'm not basing it on one match, he has been pretty average all season, which may just be Valencia's awfulness rubbing off on him, but confidence is half the performance and he doesn't look like he has much at the moment.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Well said Whodunit. The thing that separated Albiol and made him look like a great defender prior to this season was his impressive calmness, he never panicked and always took his time and in general looked very confident of himself. This season he's a wreck though, he looks like he's on extacy and just does not look confident at all, its quite sad because when on form he's a very good defender. He needs to calm the fudge down.

BUt yeah, our CB is royally screwed. Puyol, Albiol and Juanito do not look good at this moment which is obviously very worrying.
 

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Earlier this season i was hoping and expecting Piqué to get minutes at Man Utd. since I trust in him as the next starter CB in the NT for years to come.
As always, Spain's biggest concern is the defensive line.

I would like Capel to be called up. He is nowadays the best spanish winger, and would be a great choice playing the 4-1-4-1 with:

Casillas
Ramos Puyol WHOEVER:D Capdevilla
Senna
Capel Xavi Cesc Iniesta
Torres
 

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Of course he's going to be a wreck playing alongside Helguera who's pure shit and Marchena who looks like he's about to commit an error every second out there.

Albiol is def Valencia's best defender (that's not saying much is it:D), and he would benefit playing alongside someone ruthless such as Puyol (who's also in shit form lately).

Albiol is still far away from the defender we saw last season, but he's doing a decent job.

Anyway I hope Spain's defense fix their shit. Italy's defense is shit atm as well (only the ancient Panucci is doing a good job, oh and Buffon for those that want to consider GKs). But they do a good job with the NT.
 

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Aragonés To Bench Villa Against Italy?

Spanish sports daily Marca claims that the latest news from the Furia Roja camp indicates that David Villa will start from the bench against Italy tonight...


The paper claims that Luis Aragonés is treating tonight's encounter in Elche as a dry run for Spain's Euro 2008 opener against Russia on June 10th in Innsbruck.

To that end, the boss is apt to go with a 4-1-4-1 formation, with a defensive pivot ahead of the front four, and thus only room for the one striker.

Other than the lone forward development, there should be relatively few surprises in the line-up.

Iker Casillas is a stick-on for the goalkeeping position, while Real Madrid teammate Sergio Ramos will play right-back. Joan Capdevila of Villarreal should be on the left.

Barcelona captain Carles Puyol will play centre-back, while if Carlos Marchena of Valencia can recover from his minor knock, he should join up with the Catalan veteran.

Then comes the midfield anchorman. Early indications suggest that it's a toss-up between Liverpool's Xabi Alonso and Marcos Senna of Villarreal, as Valencia's David Albelda has not been called up. Ruben de la Red of Getafe could be used as a substitute.

The central four is likely to comprise Xavi of Barcleona and Arsenal's Cesc Fabregas in the middle, with Barcelona ace Andres Iniesta in a somewhat unusual wide-right position and David Silva of Valencia on the left. Albert Riera could potentially replace Silva.

Thus the lone forward position falls to Liverpool's Fernando Torres, who seems to have overcome a slight injury in time to start in Elche. The former rojiblanco captain is in fine form at present, having hit 20 league goals so far in his first season in England.
 

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yup , it seems most spain players are midfielders lol

Casillas
Ramos Puyol Marchena Capdevilla
Alonso
Xavi Cesc Silva
Iniesta(Villa)
Torres (Villa)

4-4-2 is more suited .
 
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