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50-50: Liverpool vs. Real Madrid

Champions League 22 hours ago
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50-50: Liverpool vs. Real Madrid

Champions League 22 hours ago
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Jan 14, 2013

Del Bosque plays down Michu's Spain chances

Spain coach Vicente Del Bosque has hinted Michu may miss out on a call-up due to competition for attacking places in the Euro 2012 winners' squad, but his Swansea team-mate Chico Flores could get a call-up given La Roja have fewer options in defence.

Del Bosque was at Goodison Park on Saturday for the Swans' 0-0 draw at Everton, where he saw ex-Rayo Vallecano attacker Michu hit the crossbar with a delicate chip but fail to add to his impressive tally of 13 Premier League goals in his first season in England.

The World Cup-winning coach told Monday's AS that competition for places in the Spanish attack made it difficult for any forward thinking players to force their way into the squad, no matter how well they were playing.

"He plays in a position where we also have (Andres) Iniesta, (Juan) Mata, (David) Silva, among others," Del Bosque said. "Michu deserves praise, but the competition for places is what it is. Those who are there have been champions of Europe and the world. Many players are making a case to be called up, but the fact is that the competition is enormous and it is not easy to break into the squad. The problem is not to bring people in, but to leave out those who are there already."

Del Bosque however admitted that former Spain Under-21 and Real Mallorca centre-back Chico's impressive display in helping keep the Everton attack scoreless for the first time in 20 matches had given him food for thought as he considers his squad for the friendly against Uruguay in Qatar on February 6.

"(Chico) is also in a good moment of form," the coach said. "And he plays in a position where we are a bit more in need of players. There is time to think about who will go to Doha, although the most likely is that it will be the same squad which goes on to the World Cup qualifiers against Finland and France in March."

Del Bosque was also at the Emirates to see Manchester City's 2-0 win over Arsenal, where Silva, Javi Garcia and Santi Cazorla all featured. The experience players gained in other leagues had been helpful for the Spanish national team, he said.

"Spanish players leaving for other leagues, above all England, has made our football grow and has been good for the national team," he said. "That was already seen in the evolution that Cesc (Fabregas) had (at Arsenal) and this tendency is increasing all the time."

The former Real Madrid boss praised the welcome he and assistant Toni Grande had been given at Goodison and the Emirates.

"They are football people and they behaved very well with us," he said.

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