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May 28, 2014

De Gea set to make Spain debut

Former Real Madrid midfielder Santiago Solari breaks down how Diego Costa's injury affects his World Cup spot with Spain.

Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea is excited about the prospect of making his full Spain debut in Friday's World Cup warm-up against Bolivia in Seville.

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The former Spain under-21 captain, now 23, is widely tipped to feature in the game as he and Liverpool's Pepe Reina are the only two goalkeepers in Vicente Del Bosque's matchday squad.

Regular No. 1 Iker Casillas has been allowed to rest following his Champions League final exertions with Real Madrid, while previous backup Victor Valdes of Barcelona misses this summer's big international tournament as he is recovering from long-term injury.

De Gea told a news conference at the La Roja camp in Madrid on Wednesday that he was not counting any chickens, but would be delighted to play against Bolivia if asked.

"The boss [Del Bosque] has not said anything about the lineup, we want to enjoy these days," he said. "Yes, I really want to make my debut. I know that the level of goalkeepers is high. I am trying to enjoy myself as much as possible, and I hope I get this opportunity."

Spain's World Cup build-up has been affected by the injury problems of Atletico Madrid striker Diego Costa, who could well miss out on the tournament in his home country of Brazil due to a hamstring tear.

De Gea said that it made sense to wait as long as possible to see if his former Atletico teammate could recover in time, given the impact Costa could have on games.

"[Costa] is important for the national team, I believe you have to wait for him," he said. "I spent a few years with him. This has been his 'breakout year.' He can decide games, he has had an impressive season and now we have to wait. We want him to be 100 percent to be with the senior side."

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