[/mt_one_half] Estadio Municipal El Molinón (Gijón) | 22 Mar 13 | 2014 FIFA World Cup Qualification | Group I | Spain vs Finland
Match Preview and Team News
Finland will play in one of their toughest international matches on Friday, when they visit title holders Spain in FIFA World Cup qualifying match.
Since winning Euro 2008 under Luis Aragones, Spain have swept all events before them to finally emerge as the game’s top international team. Sergio Ramos is all set for his 100th La Roja Cap. Spain will be starting with a Madrid- Barcelona mixed midfield attack with Xabi Alonso, Busquets and Iniesta as Xavi is suffering from a hamstring injury. Casillas is also out of the team due to his injury.
With 14 victories and 4 draws, Spain looks forward for 19 undefeated face offs. With its all famous all round attack and defence, Spain are the obvious favourites. Clubs may separate players in the leagues but when the best are taken for the national teams, sometimes it creates a novel and legendary team like that of Spain.
Finland has 2 wins, 2 losses and one draw in its past 5 international encounters. Coach Mixu Paatelainen is without one of his key players, Alexei Eremenko, who is suspended after getting sent off in the 1-1 draw against Georgia. Hetemaj takes his place. With one gun down and some of the best football players in the world against them, Finland shall hope to at least settle for a draw for if not a miraculous win.
The Spanish must not be overconfident and the Finns must play their best.
Probable Starting Lineup
Spain – Valdes, Arbeloa, Pique, Ramos, Alba, Alonso, Busquets, Iniesta, Silva, Fabregas, Pedro
Finland – Hradecky, Raitala, Toivio, Moisander, Arkivuo, Ring, Sparv, Eremenko, Hetemaj, Hamalainen, Pukki