Spain trains without Pique ahead of friendlies

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Madrid, March 20 (IANS) The Spain national football team on Tuesday practised at its second-to-last training camp before the 2018 World Cup without Gerard Pique, who missed the first session in which Rodrigo Hernandez, Marcos Alonso and Dani Parejo took part, under coach Julen Lopetegui’s helm.

Barcelona defender Pique was out sick with a fever for the training at Las Rozas sports city near Madrid, where the Spain team — world champions in 2010 — prepared for their friendly matches against Germany on Friday and Argentina next Tuesday, reports Efe.

Coach Lopetegui had the remaining 23 of his 24 players on the field.

The training also saw the return of Atletico Madrid striker Diego Costa after a period of inactivity due to problems with his former team Chelsea, having not played with Spain since the June 12 World Cup qualifier against Macedonia.

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