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Round 16: Spain v Russia


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I don't get Nacho starting unless Carvajal has a knock. Iniesta a loss too even though he can't play 90 minutes. Think Saúl should be ahead of Koke too, very conservative by Hierro.

Saying that...I still think they'll go through comfortably.

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2 minutes ago, JDownie said:

That Spain team is so far off the quality of their 2010 team, even though it's still full of top players. 

Yeah agree. The key players now bar Isco are the same players that were key back then though so easy to see why. Xavi is the biggest loss.

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2 minutes ago, EnterUsernameHere said:

Yeah agree. The key players now bar Isco are the same players that were key back then though so easy to see why. Xavi is the biggest loss.

Agreed about Xavi. Iniesta in 2010 was unbelievable too, nowhere near the same now. Better off starting Asensio, but still a big downgrade from 2010 Iniesta. 

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7 minutes ago, JDownie said:

That Spain team is so far off the quality of their 2010 team, even though it's still full of top players. 

Come on though...Isco, Asensio and Silva behind Costa :cool:

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1 minute ago, Baptista_8 said:

Come on though...Isco, Asensio and Silva behind Costa :cool:

2010 was Xavi, Iniesta and Pedro behind David Villa... no contest. 

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Biggest difference for me is that Puyol was a much better defender than both Ramos and Pique are now.

Xavi and Iniesta from their primes are also unmatched.

De Gea being awful compared to his MUTD standard is also a problem.

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5 minutes ago, JDownie said:

Agreed about Xavi. Iniesta in 2010 was unbelievable too, nowhere near the same now. Better off starting Asensio, but still a big downgrade from 2010 Iniesta. 

Don't know. It makes sense today if Iniesta's fitness is an issue but in a one off game I don't think Asensio has reached Iniesta's current level yet. Different though, More direct which I assume is why he's starting today.

2 minutes ago, JDownie said:

2010 was Xavi, Iniesta and Pedro behind David Villa... no contest. 

Mostly Torres rather than Pedro.

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3 minutes ago, JDownie said:

2010 was Xavi, Iniesta and Pedro behind David Villa... no contest. 

Oh not saying there is. David Villa is one of my fav strikers ever and Xavi and Iniesta speak for themselves. But still an exciting lineup for me.

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2 minutes ago, EnterUsernameHere said:

Don't know. It makes sense today if Iniesta's fitness is an issue but in a one off game I don't think Asensio has reached Iniesta's current level yet. Different though, More direct which I assume is why he's starting today.

Mostly Torres rather than Pedro.

I just used the line-up of the final as it was most memorable. I wasn't sure how much Spain actually played Iniesta and Pedro on the wings throughout the actual tournament (I didn't watch Spain much back then). 

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4 minutes ago, JDownie said:

I just used the line-up of the final as it was most memorable. I wasn't sure how much Spain actually played Iniesta and Pedro on the wings throughout the actual tournament (I didn't watch Spain much back then). 

Pedro came in late into the tournament, before then it was Villa left-ish of Torres, Iniesta on the right and Xavi in a more advanced position than he played at Barcelona.

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I think Spain are more likely to conjure up a special moment or two that will seal this match. Not guaranteed by all means.

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1 minute ago, EnterUsernameHere said:

It should be Carvajal. Nacho because he's more defensive and they consider Azpilicueta a centre back.

I just assumed Carvajal wasn't fully fit.

And Azpilicueta and Nacho are pretty similar in that regard. CB/RB type of player.

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They went from some gutsy play at the start  of the WC to some gutless play at the start of this one. Spain don't like teams in their face.  Russia needs to up the heat.

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Russia look poor here and really second rate to Spain. I hope they up their game though, but it does look like Spain are barely needing to try.

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