Spain was one of the high-profile teams to make an early exit from the 2018 World Cup, defeating the competition at the stage of the 16th round against Russia. La Roja started a nightmare in the tournament when Julen Lopetegui announced his intention to abandon his role as coach after the 2018 World Cup finals. The Spanish football federation acted to kill Lopetegui just two days before the first match , replacing him with Fernando Hierro.
Spain defeated the victory in the opening match of the tournament with Portugal by a heroine by Cristiano Ronaldo, who scored a hat-trick, including a slow free kick to secure a spot for Selecao. Issues have not improved much since then, as Hierro's men rushed to cross Iran before they needed a strike to avoid defeat at Morroco.
Their confrontation with Russia against Russia was on paper a simple pass in the last eight of the 2018 World Cup. However, La Roja was crap in the attack after taking the lead through Sergei Ignashevich's goal and paid the price when Artem Dzyuba scored from the penalty spot. Spain has struggled to break Russia's defense, as the fight has resulted in sanctions. In the shootout, Koke and Aspas have lost their temper to send their side out of the competition.
Spain now has a challenge in their hands to find a permanent coach to replace Lopetegui. There will be no shortage of candidates, although if it will be in force since Spain will face England at the start of the UEFA Nations League competition it remains to be seen. La Roja is backed on 6/5 in the latest international football bets to win the three lions in their Wembley Stadium competition, highlighting the quality of the new manager.
However, the biggest question for the coach will be whether to adapt the style of Spain. The Tiki-taka game that has passed has been the driving force behind the two European Championship triumphs along with the achievement of the ultimate glory in the 2010 World Cup. Xavi and Andres Iniesta at the top of their powers were the architects of their success, Fernando Torres and David Villa to operate in the last third. Their system raised their heads and shoulders above the rest of the competition, ensuring for the first time the world crown in the history of the nation.
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The issue ahead of the new coach is that today's harvesting of the players does not have the same capacity. Iskko, Marco Assenio and Coco flatter to cheat Russia. Iniesta hit the bench, but could not unlock the backline of the host nation. The depth of choice behind Diego Costa was not overwhelming, as Aspas hit and was lost throughout his career while Rodrigo Moreno was not very prolific. The central striker has been a concern for a moment and could be a big worry looking ahead, with only Alvaro Morata and Inaki Williams available back for now. Even players on the side under 21 are not in the shape of a central front.
With Asensio, Saul Niguez, Koke, Thiago Alcantara and Isco, there is an embarrassment of wealth in the middle of the park. However, Spain could enter a situation where "too many cooks spoil broth". They have many players to make opportunities, but not many to make them. Germany is another example of a team that shouts for a central striker. For once, both former world champions look at groups such as England with Harry Kane and France with Kylian Mbappe with envy. It is a problem that the new coach has to resolve quickly to get La Roja back to the form.