On 26th August, Spain’s coach Vicente Del Bosque announced the 21-man squad for their Euro 2012 qualifier against Liechtenstein and the friendly against Argentina. The squad, of course, included the Liverpool ace Fernando Torres. Roy Hodgson was not pleased due to the amount of injuries the Spaniard has been enduring recently.
According to Guardian, Hodgson contacted Del Bosque in order to convince him to omit Torres from the squad stating that the two-week training program the Merseyside Reds have planned for him will suit his long-term fitness rather than preparing for matches. Del Bosque seems to have ignored the plea as there has not been any changes in the squad reported.
Torres lost his place in South Africa, partly due to his knee and partly due to the new Nike Laser III Elites he was given during the World Cup. The striker is said to be keen to not to jeopardize his situation with Del Bosque further in order to have a successful international career as Barcelona’s yet another youth product Pedro is set to make the step up.
Roy Hodgson said:
“We can’t say he’s unfit to play because he’s just played 85 minutes against West Bromwich Albion. We can only ask the question, propose that this is the best option for the player but we don’t have the right to pull him out.”
“The more work our sports science people can do with him, to build him up, give him basically the good pre-season that all players need, the better it will be for his long-term future. If we’re unable to do that because he’s asked to play so many matches in this early part of the season it’s going to effect us negatively.”
The question is: if Torres is to get injured or get a knock that leads to worsen his injury crisis, does that give the perfect excuse to Liverpool for performing bad this season? Specially now that Javier Mascherano has left for Barcelona as well.
Spain’s 21-man squad:
Goalkeepers: Iker Casillas, Victor Valdes, Pepe Reina
Defenders: Alvaro Arbeloa, Sergio Ramos, Joan Capdevila, Carlos Marchena, Gerard Pique, Carles Puyol
Midfield: Sergio Busquets, Xabi Alonso, Xavi, Cesc Fabregas, Santi Cazorla, David Silva, Jesús Navas, Andre Iniesta
Strikers: Pedro, Joseba Llorente, David Villa, Fernando Torres