Vicente Del Bosque released the pre-Euro squad for the February 29th friendly against Venezuela. The big shock is no Torres. For the first time Del Bosque has not called up Torres due to form. Other players not mentioned are Pedro and Raul Albiol. New to the list at last, is Roberto Soldado from Valencia. He has not been playing at 100% but deserves this call up for his solid season. It’s only his third call up, the last time was in 2007. The pearl of La Liga was also named by VDB, Athletic’s Iker Muniain. Normally a part of the U21 team and still only 19 years old, the kid is the real deal and needs to be a part of Euro 2012, in my opinion, as the transition and legacy of La Roja needs to continue.
Javi Martinez has been called up as a defender.
8 players from Barcelona, 4 players from Real Madrid AND Athletic Bilbao, 2 from Valencia and Sevilla. (9 out of Athletic’s starting 11 might be playing International football midweek, if you include the Olympics squad and Venezuela.)
Goalkeepers: Casillas (Real Madrid), Valdes (Barcelona), Reina (Liverpool)
Defenders: Ramos, Arbeloa (Real Madrid), Pique, Puyol (Barcelona), Jordi Alba (Valencia), Iraola, Javi Martínez (Athletic).
Midfielders: Xabi Alonso (Real Madrid), Iniesta, Cesc, Xavi, Busquets, Thiago (Barcelona), Cazorla (Malaga).
Forwards: Silva (Manchester City), Mata (Chelsea), Muniain and Llorente (Athletic), Navas and Negredo (Sevilla) and Soldado (Valencia).
The pre-Olympic list to face Egypt on February 28th was also announced today by coach Luis Milla. New to the list are the Athletic duo, Oscar De Marcos and Ander Iturraspe. Only two over 23 players are allowed to play at the Olympics, as a result Adrian and Diego Capel were called up to fill these slots. Athletic Bilbao has the biggest representation with 4 players, followed by Barcelona and Atletico de Madrid with 3.
Goalkeepers : David de Gea (M. United) and Diego Mariño (Villareal)
Defenders : Mikel San Jose (Athletic), Alvaro Dominguez (Atlético), Martin Montoya (Barcelona), Cesar Azpilicueta (Olympique Marseille), Didac Vila (Espanyol), Alberto Botia (Sporting Gijon) and Victor Ruiz (Valencia).
Midfielders : Ander Iturraspe (Athletic), Ander Herrera (Athletic), Oscar de Marcos (Athletic), Jorge Resurrection “Koke” (Atlético), Oriol Romeu (Chelsea), Francisco Román “Isco” (Malaga) and Diego Capel (Sporting Lisbon .)
Forwards : Adrian Lopez (Atletico), Cristian Tello (Barcelona), Isaac Cuenca (Barcelona) and Rodrigo Moreno (Benfica).