The Spanish national team captain insists the team is still bitter from the exit from Russia and wants to start with a good run of games.
After their footballing domination of four years and three major titles, Spain failed to capitalise in the latest edition of FIFA World Cup 2018 being knocked out by the 70th placed host team Russia. As revealed by their current team captain, Sergio Ramos, they are in turn still bitter of their failed attempts in Russia.
In the aftermath, Luis Enrique became Julen Lopetegui’s long-term successor in July and the former Barcelona treble-winner is still unbeaten as the national team coach. A 1-2 win over England in Wembley and a 6-0 win over Croatia proved to be a solid display of Enrique’s style of play.
Spain will host England in the return fixture on Monday night and Ramos has insisted to get over the World Cup disappointment.
“There’s a bitter taste in the mouth from Russia, given we were knocked out of the tournament so early, while knowing that we had a team that could’ve competed with the best,” said Ramos.
“That wasn’t the case, but now we’re into a new era with a new coach. I think our mentality is very positive once again and we have to try to achieve our targets. We have to enjoy the Nations League, which is an important competition and it’s what lies ahead of us, so we want to start with a good run of results, perform well and win, as we’ve been doing.”
“We have a very important game against England, which will be a fantastic clash,” said the team captain who is en route to his 157th appearance.
The three lions are yet to pick up the three points from a single game in the Nations League as they were held to a goalless draw by Croatia.
“I think they’re a very good side,” said Ramos who is impressed by the measures of Gareth Southgate. “They’ve been going through a new cycle, with players leaving the national team.
“But they are a team that compete very well, with players that can make things happen and are very dangerous going forward.
“They’ll be tough opponents for us, but we’ll try to hurt them in the ways that we’ve been working on for some time.”
Spain sit atop the Group 4 of League A with England and Croatia sharing a point each with Spain keeping a 5 point margin from both.