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Spain's Vitolo hoping to build on performance against Belgium

Vitolo is determined to earn a permanent place in the Spain squad, with the Sevilla winger having put the disappointment of missing out on Euro 2016 behind him.

Vitolo, 26, started in La Roja's 2-0 friendly win over Belgium in Brussels on Thursday and his performance was one of the highlights of the first game in charge for Julen Lopetegui, who replaced Vicente del Bosque after the European Championship.

Marca applauded his performance, stating: "The game the Sevilla winger played in Brussels is of a player that has arrived determined to stay in the national team. A breath of fresh air that has to remain until Russia [host country of the 2018 World Cup]."

Vitolo, who has made three appearances since making his Spain debut in a friendly defeat to Netherlands in March 2015, said in Friday's news conference that he will work hard to ensure he remains in Lopetegui's thoughts.

"I'm happy that I have the trust of Julen Lopetegui," he said. "I will continue to work hard because I want to come as many times as possible to the national team and do well. Lopetegui has told me to play as I do at Sevilla and I had fun against a great team like Belgium."

Vitolo played up front alongside Real Madrid's Alvaro Morata and Manchester City's David Silva.

Vitolo Spain v Belgium 20160901
Vitolo impressed for Spain against Belgium.

He set up Silva for Spain's opener before earning a penalty that Silva converted for the second.

"It's very easy to play alongside the strikers that we have because they have a lot of quality," Vitolo said. "From the first minute, we went out determined and we are very happy with the image this team gave."

Vitolo had hoped to represent Spain at Euro 2016 earlier this summer and was a strong contender after a solid season with Sevilla.

He made 41 starts in all competitions to help the club win the Europa League and finish seventh in La Liga.

"I had wanted to go to Euro 2016 but the coach [Del Bosque] thought there were better players than me," he said. "I'm just trying to do the best I can and I really felt comfortable on the pitch. But I don't know if I will play on Monday."

Spain begin their 2018 World Cup qualifying campaign on Monday when they host Liechtenstein in Leon.

Lopetegui's side also face Italy, Albania, Israel and Macedonia in Group G.

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