Spain’s Struggle for Talent: Joselu and Iago Aspas Leading a New Era
Spain’s Euro 2024 qualifying campaign has hit a snag, with two back-to-back losses, including a shock defeat to Scotland. This has raised concerns over their reliance on journeyman forwards, Joselu and Iago Aspas, to lead a new era. With Luis de la Fuente faced with building a new side around scant resources, it’s worth asking: what has happened to the production line of talent that once sustained years of glory?
Although some may doubt journeyman forward, Joselu, he’s been performing well in La Liga, hitting double figures for the last four seasons running. Joselu’s best attribute is his ability to head the ball – this was clear when he hit the crossbar against Scotland, which was the closest Spain came to a goal. The problem is that he is essentially all they have, along with three other forwards who are either injured or ageing.
Ansu Fati was supposed to be the solution, but after breaking out onto the scene with Spain and Barcelona, he has since been sidelined with injuries for ten months. He’s not even in the current squad, which raises questions about where Spain will find the talent they need to contend with the likes of Scotland, Georgia and Norway.
It’s fair to say that there are young players in the squad that could find a spot in top international teams, but de la Fuente has not picked them yet. With half of a very strong side under the age of 21, Spain has plenty of young talent ready to make an impact. However, with a group that could end up being deceivingly difficult, it’s essential they find and nurture this talent.
Spain’s biggest problem under their new coach is that it’s unclear what their Plan A is or who will lead it. With the reliance on journeyman forwards, they could be going into the competition at a disadvantage. It’s time to refocus on finding new talent and building a team that can go the distance.
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