Madrid, March 16 (IANS) Spain’s football team head coach Julen Lopetegui on Friday called up Marcos Alonso, Dani Parejo and Rodi Hernandez-Cascante for the first time, while Atletico Madrid’s forward Diego Costa returned to the squad for the first time in nine months for the upcoming friendly matches against Germany and Argentina.
Barcelona’s injured midfielder Sergio Busquets, as well as Chelsea’s striker Alvaro Morata were left out of the squad for the friendlies scheduled for March 23 against home side Germany and March 27 against Argentina in Madrid, reported Efe.
“When he was competing and playing at a good level, Diego always has been with us. He was inactive for a while and now he became active again in Atletico Madrid and with us. This does not guarantee anything, Alvaro’s chances in the World Cup are intact and Diego fights for that spot,” Lopetegui said at a press conference.
He said that Morata was excluded from the squad after the physical issues he has been struggling with and being on the sideline with his club.
Dani Carvajal, Cesar Azpilicueta, Koke Resurreccion, Lucas Vazquez and Diego Costa were summoned after being excluded from the previous squad, while Alonso, Parejo and Rodi joined the national team for the first time.
The Spanish squad is as follows:
Goalkeepers: Kepa Arrizabalaga (Athletic Club Bilbao), Pepe Reina (Napoli), David de Gea (Manchester United).
Defenders: Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea), Alvaro Odriozola (Real Sociedad), Gerard Pique, Jordi Alba (Barcelona), Dani Carvajal, Nacho Fernandez, Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid) and Marcos Alonso (Chelsea).
Midfielders: Dani Parejo (Valencia), Rodri Hernandez (Villarreal), Andres Iniesta (Barcelona), Koke Resurrección, Saul Niguez (Atletico Madrid), Thiago Alcantara (Bayern Munich), David Silva (Manchester City), Marco Asensio and Isco Alarcon (Real Madrid).
Forwards: Lucas Vazquez (Real Madrid), Diego Costa (Atletico de Madrid), Rodrigo Moreno (Valencia) and Iago Aspas (Celta de Vigo).