Spain and Turkey are set to lock horns in the 2nd round of the Euro 2016 on Friday in what promises to be a battle between Spanish Flair and Turkish Resoluteness. While Spain won their opening game against Czech Republic courtesy of a late goal by Pique, Luka Modric’s fabulous strike ensured that Turkey began their campaign on a sore note.
Del Bosque is expected to continue with 4-4-2, against the Turkish with Nolito and Morata leading the attack. While the manager is not expected to ring numerous changes to the starting 11, we expect Thiago Alcantra to replace Cesc Fabregas in the midfield for the fixture.
De Gea, Juanfran, Pique, Ramos, Alba Bosque, Silva, Alcantra, Iniesta, Nolito and Morata.
Turkey’s preferred centre back pairing has been disrupted with Serdar Aziz being ruled out of the tournament due to injury. The injury means that Mehmet Topal is expected to drop into the defence for the reminder of the tournament. While Emre Mor might have impressed a few with his cameo in the last game, Fatih Terim is expected to continue to use him as an impact player for the game.
Babacan, Gönül, Topal, Balta, Erkin, İnan, Şen, Çalhanoğlu, Özyakup, Turan, Yılmaz.
These two sides have met 11 times in the past with Spain winning on 5 occasions while Turkey have recorded just 2 wins against the Spaniards
Turkey recorded their last victory over Spain in 1967 when they beat them 2-1 in the Mediterranean games.
-Vincente Del Bosque holds the record for most consecutive wins achieved by an international coach with 13 consecutive wins since his debut.
The UEFA Euro 2012 player of the tournament seems to have picked up from where he left in the last tournament. Iniesta was impressive in the last game effectively pulling the strings of his side against the Czechs. It was his pass that unlocked the resolute Czech defence and created the all important goal for Gérard Pique. Given Spain’s strength in attack, it is likely that Turkey will be more concerned with sorting out their defensive responsibilities, while looking to capitalise on the odd chance that might come their way. Given that, Iniesta’s vision and experience in breaking down defences will come in handy for Del Bosque’s side
The Barcelona midfielder has been known for establishing his authority over the midfield and Turkey would be keen to disrupt his rhythm by closing him down effectively and denying him time and space.
Another Barcelona man who will be in the lime light on Friday will be Arda Turan. The former Atletico player had a bad start to the tournament as he was unable to have an impact on the game. However, Turkey manager Fatih Terim will be hoping his star midfielder can come to the party against the Spaniards.
The 29 year old has not had a great season with Barcelona and many fans are of the opinion that he should be dropped from the starting 11 despite being the captain of the national side. Turan has shown an all round capability adding to the creativity of his side while also ensuring he does his fair share of dirty work in the midfield and this qualities will come in handy against the European Champions.
While the Spanish side might not be in as imperious form as they once were, they certainly have a lot more quality to offer than the Turkish side. Like mentioned before, it would be a battle between Turkey’s defensive discipline and Spanish attacking flair. While we do not expect it to be cake walk for Spain, we expect them to chalk out a hard fought win in the game.