FIVE signs of where it went wrong for Del Bosque

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Updated: July 4, 2016

One week has passed since the European Championship holders Spain lost their defence to Italy.

 

And since their exit of a competition they once dominated for two consecutive tournaments, they had to say goodbye to their manager Vicente Del Bosque.

 

Del Bosque, who led Spain to their first ever World Cup six years ago and retained the Euros in 2012, decided to resign after an eight year spell.

 

So what went wrong for the 65-year-old? What happened to that world dominance of Spanish football?

 

Here are five suggestions…

 

 

1) Brazil humiliate Spain in the Confederations Cup

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Fred and Neymar kick the Spaniards off the park

 

It was a final that was built up with so much expectancy of a new rival in the world of football. Spain, the best team in the world facing a challenge from a country that was once the kings of the global sport, Brazil.

 

Instead, Brazil climbed on top of Spain within the opening three minutes as the wonder kid Neymar and his team mate Fred stole the show at the spectacular Maracana. 3-0 it ended for the crowd favourites.

 

Spain were left with frustration of losing another Confederations Cup. The tough Gerard Pique could not handle the attack of Neymar and his fellow defender Sergio Ramos was off target when attempting to score a penalty kick.

 

The result taking place 12 months before Brazil would host the 2014 World Cup certainly left a lot of unsure heads questioning if Spain would recover from this.

 

 

2) The world champions bow out in the group stages

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12 months down the line after that torturous performance against the Brazilians, Spain returned to the home of football to try and pick themselves up.

 

None of their opponents gave them any room to breath.

 

Del Bosque went up against the Netherlands in their first game of the campaign. A repeat of the 2010 World Cup final where Spain edged out the Dutch in extra time.

 

It was a recipe for sweet revenge for the Orange and they did impress by embarrassing the Spanish for winning 5-1. Not a great start when defending your world crown.

 

Then in their second game of the group stage Spain returned to the Maracana with flashbacks of the 2013 Confederations Cup final.

 

The Maracana curse struck again as Chile took the advantage of finishing off the job while their opponents were still hurt from the opener.

 

Spain lost in two straight major tournaments within the gap of 12 months. What is going on with Spain?

 

 

3) No Euros for Mata and Costa

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Just weeks before Euro 2016 was to take centre stage, Del Bosque went with the brave move of dropping out Juan Mata and Diego Costa.

 

Two familiar faces in the English Premier League who have proved vital for their clubs Manchester United and Chelsea in the past.

 

Mata played an important role in Louis Van Gaal’s successful run for United’s first FA Cup in 12 years which included scoring an equaliser in the final.

 

It may not have been a defining league season for Costa with Chelsea finishing outside of the European spots but he has still proved to create worries for the defence he would go up against. If anything, Costa could have been the super sub Del Bosque needed when the matches got tough.

 

 

4) Del Bosque and Casillas at war

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Where’s the love guys?

 

It is believed that there have been a few arguments between the manager and the veteran goalkeeper, Iker Casillas before and during Euro 2016.

 

Del Bosque dropped Casillas to the bench for the first time since the goalkeeper made his debut at a major tournament at Euro 2000.

 

David De Gea, 25, took Casillas’ place after pulling off incredible saves for Manchester United in the last few seasons and was awarded player of the season at Old Trafford for three consecutive years.

 

Casillas, who captained Spain to Euro 2008, World Cup 2010 and Euro 2012 glory, was not happy with the manager’s decision as he felt ready to lead his squad out once again.

 

Despite Casillas’ age, should Del Bosque have put out experience ahead of young blood?

 

 

5) Croatia win group ahead of Spain

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Croatia crash Spain’s party

 

The beginning of Spain’s Euro 2016 adventure looked to be going to plan with a late win over Czech Republic and a dominant performance against Turkey.

 

But the final group stage match was a six pointer against Croatia, who looked to be the dark horses of the tournament, whoever came out on top would come out as winners of the group.

 

As always, Sergio Ramos missed another penalty to miss the chance of doubling the lead in the match. But even when Spain were one ahead they looked rattled from the pressure of Croatia including De Gea’s hiccup in the 18-yard box that was close to conceding an equaliser.

 

Spain failed the task of winning the six pointer and were punished by the Croatians to instead face Italy in the knockout stages, where the potential was a third placed Portugal side in the last 16.

 


 

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