Manager – Vicente Del Bosque
Captain – Iker Casillas
Most Capped Player – Iker Casillas (128 caps)
Record Goalscorer – David Villa (51 goals)
FIFA Ranking – 1st
Odds To Win – 5/2
(For pre-tournament friendlies. Barcelona/Bilbao players not included due to club commitments)
Goalkeepers: Iker Casillas (Real Madrid), Pepe Reina (Liverpool), David De Gea (Manchester United)
Defenders: Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid), Alvara Arbeloa (Real Madrid), Raul Albiol (Real Madrid), Nacho Monreal (Malaga CF), Jordi Alba (Valencia), Alvaro Dominguez (Ateltico Madrid), Juanfran (Atletico Madrid)
Midfielders: Xabi Alonso (Real Madrid), David Silva (Manchester City), Santi Cazorla (Malaga CF), Jesús Navas (Sevilla), Bruno Soriano (Villareal), Isco (Malaga CF), Benat (Real Betis), Javi Garcia (Benfica), Juan Mata (Chelsea)
Forwards: Álvaro Negredo (Sevilla), Roberto Soldado (Valencia), Adrián (Atletico Madrid), Fernando Torres (Chelsea)
ROUTE TO THE FINALS
Spain sailed through their qualification campaign at a canter. Eight wins from eight saw the reigning World and European champions top their group eleven points clear of the Czech Republic in second place. Their toughest challenge came at Hampden Park against Scotland where they surrendered a two goal lead and looked to be heading for a draw before substitute Fernando Llorente scored a winner late on. Spain scored for fun during their qualification campaign, averaging over three goals a game with Barcelona striker David Villa finishing as their top goalscorer with seven.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Fernando Llorente: Powerhouse striker, Fernando Llorente has had the season of his career this year at Athletic Bilbao. His 29 goals in 51 games have seen Bilbao reach both the Europa League and Copa Del Rey finals in 2012. Llorente is the definition of a complete striker. He has pace, he’s strong in the air and is an astute finisher. With David Villa currently struggling for match fitness after a lengthy layoff this season, it looks likely that Llorente will lead the line for Spain this summer. For the gamblers amongst you, you wouldn’t do yourself any harm in backing him to win the tournament’s golden boot.
Iker Muniain: When Manchester United were knocked out of the Champions League and into the Europa League, a lot of people saw them sailing through to the latter stages of the tournament. Athletic Bilbao and their supremely talented midfielder, Iker Muniain had other ideas. Muniain has been the standout player in a Bilbao side which took everyone by surprise this season. He’s quick, can play with both feet and possesses superb vision. Muniain’s only problem is breaking into a midfield ahead of established players such as Juan Mata, David Silva, Xavi and Andrés Iniesta. However, when he does get on the pitch this summer you can expect big things from this young 19-year-old future star.
HOW WILL THEY LINE UP?
29/02/2012 v Venezuela W 5-0
15/11/2011 v Costa Rica D 2-2
12/11/2011 v England L 0-1
11/10/2011 v Scotland W 3-1
07/10/2011 v Czech Rep. W 2-0