Are Spain Cutting Off Their Noses To Spite Their Face? by Dan Smith
The Spain manager Julen Lopetegui signed a new contract as recently as March so it’s understandable his bosses would be put out by his decision to leave after the World Cup. After sleeping off their disappointment though they should have looked at the bigger picture. Their job as the head of the Spanish game is to give the country the best chance possible to succeed in Russia.
The decision to change managers on the eve of the tournament seems to benefit no one. A man who was unbeaten in qualifying misses the chance to achieve his dream, while the nation’s players and fans are hardly likely to appreciate chaos when it could of been avoided. This would only make sense if there had been a divide in the dressing room, which according to Ramos was not the case.
Players are used to manager changes after competitions, it’s hardly ground breaking. Naturally selfish, those who have won honours with Real Madrid and Barcelona are hardly going to sacrifice their own chances because of who the boss is. It begs the question could Real have held off the announcement and kept it to themselves for two weeks?
It shows how all involved thought it was no big deal, Real wouldn’t have wanted their new boss to miss out on such a unique opportunity. The Spanish FA could’ve simply accepted that their coach was made an offer too good to turn down and adapted. There are numerous examples of teams heading to World Cups knowing their manager was leaving afterwards.
Spain are capable of beating anyone on their day, this won’t change that. They are unique in the fact that like their leading clubs, their identity is built in their DNA to the point where it’s not vital who manages them.
This won’t help though. It suddenly puts a spotlight on then they could have done without.