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Reflecting on Spain's World Cup exit

Posted: 19 June 2014 Time: 17:28

Spanish journalist Antonio Aragón reflects on Spain's dismal exit at the 2014 World Cup, but feels there is hope on the horizon.

Spain, as usual, is divided. Last time it was joined, embraced in the same hug, was four years ago, after the South African World Cup, when they sew a golden star on their chest.

But ‘tempus fugit’ and nothing is eternal.

Anyway, it seems that are two bands: the ones that punch the sack of critics, and the ones that show respect to the most glorious generation of players that became soccer in poetry and strung together three big tournaments.

An era has just ended, though nobody can imagine it would happen in this ugly way.

The cascade of opinions are just the fruits of frustration; opinions that emanate after the disaster. The whole world expected more of the champions against Netherlands and Chile, two teams that overcame the poor intensity of the Spanish players and took advantage of the unusual mistakes committed.

Meanwhile, in attack, the tiki-taka style lost the speed and the precision, becoming tasteless.

Maybe the adversaries learnt how to nullify this kind of soccer, or maybe the Spanish players, who have the highest rate of games played this year, arrived at Brazil unfit, exhausted or overage.

It is obvious if we look at the uncommon mistakes of Casillas (it was Jose Mourinho who decided to sit him on the bench), or the balls lost yesterday by Xavi Alonso, Iniesta or Busquets.

It can also be said that Vicente del Bosque failed in choosing the squad and hadn't initiated the regeneration of the team.

However, the wound is now opened and there is no point in making it bigger. It’s already extremely painful.

These are all a number of issues which, in my opinion, conceal the main one: the current Spanish players, at least the key ones, have lost the brilliance.

I am not referring to their performance. That’s the clear consequence, not the explanation. No, they have lost the gleam in their eyes …the serial killer instinct.

The ambition that was there four years ago has disappeared, as was evident during the Confederations Cup and some friendly games, including the shock defeat to South Africa.

The most difficult part is not reaching the top, it’s staying there.

Spain did it for six stunning years, but the time of this generation is sadly over. But that doesn’t allow us to dismiss the wonderful style that amazed the world and suited perfectly the conditions of the players.

And there is hope: Spain has a new generation of talented players who are making their mark on the world stage: Thiago Alcantara, Isco, Jese, Delofleu … players that, surely, have the appetite for getting Spain back to the top level.

Spain will come back because, after years and years of deceptions, they have finally found their identity; their DNA of success. It’s only a matter of time.

Livefyre comments on this story...

posted: 2014-06-19 15:47:04

oh yes, like that old saying that say its time to reflect, that is relevant now for SPAIN. I still maintain that quality always overcomes adversity, they are beaten and got the wakeup call but that doesn't make them bad overnight.

posted: 2014-06-19 15:50:23

The reason is clear that spain didn't advance and its the hunger of the many current crop of players.these players and their coach have won everything worthwhile on offer in football-champions league,world cup,european cup twice.what do you aspire to if you have reached more than you have hoped for?spain should get a new coach and promote younger players who have won under 17 and 20 world championship.that generation will carry spain forward.

former buc_champ
posted: 2014-06-19 22:22:44

People must stop criticising this team cause they were always going to go through this patch and to start rebuilding again, always! Nothing last forever, what goes up has to come down and in Spain's case they are not immune to this rule. This team don't have any motivation to win, there's no ambition cause they've seen it all, done it all, win it all. They never looked at any stage during this world cup like a team hungry for more success. Like I said they have it all and rebuilding starts now. Nothing wrong with the football philosophy, just the personal needs refreshing. A new coach as well cause not even del bosque looks hungry no More. They were a brilliant team before, formidable and will become a force once more, don't be mistaken to think that this is it, the quality is still there, just need to be given a chance to shine and excite. Once and always bucs.

former buc_champ
posted: 2014-06-19 22:25:44

mountainking great minds think alike, you are spot on. Out with the old, in with the new! Once and always bucs.

Mdu Mpansi
posted: 2014-06-20 03:50:52

Del Bosque to blame y ddnt he start with those youngsters lsco is beta than lniesta n Busquets combined.Casillas is done Morinho saw it he has de gea n y dd he leave diego lopez after a stunning season with Real

Tolly (Bobby's dogs just bark to anything that mov
posted: 2014-06-20 05:18:42

Great and quality teams fall and come back. Spain will come back and reclaim what is theirs...success through titi-taka.

posted: 2014-06-20 06:44:29

Spain will bounce back, unfortunately it was always going to be difficult to overcome that 5 1 trauma especially with red hot Chile waiting

The Maverick
posted: 2014-06-20 07:17:44

Del Bosque was the reason the downfall of Spain...he failed to bring continuity to the national team team..he failed to use the young players being mentioned above and expected miracles from the old generation of players that won the WC in 2010.

this is exactly how the demise of Bafana Bafana came up since 1996....

shihambahamba mboweni
posted: 2014-06-20 08:49:37

The coach's lack of trust in players like David Villa aslo contributed towards the lack of agression in the Spanish attack.Having said that,nothing lasts forever.It does matter how one falls-but how you rise and pick up the pieces is what matters most.I believe that will be tha case with Spanish football soon,as long as Barcelona can reclaim it's glory.

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