Luis Enrique proud of Spain despite Nations League defeat

Spain coach Luis Enrique looks dejected after the match against France at the San Siro, Milan October 10, 2021. — Reuters pic
Spain coach Luis Enrique looks dejected after the match against France at the San Siro, Milan October 10, 2021. — Reuters pic

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MILAN, Oct 11 — Luis Enrique said Sunday that he was happy with his Spain side despite them coming up short to lose 2-1 to France in the Nations League final.

Spain went ahead in an exciting clash at the San Siro in Milan through Mikel Oyarzabal’s strike midway through the second half but were overhauled by a superb goal from Karim Benzema and Kylian Mbappe’s winner 10 minutes from time.

The defeat came after a strong performance which could easily have been rewarded by taking the match to extra-time had it not been for some fine saves from Hugo Lloris late on.

“I know that we were able to win against European champions and play almost even with the world champions so for players and the team that is all good,” Luis Enrique told reporters.

“The important thing is that the team maintains its personality and will to win.”

Mbappe’s decisive strike made the Spain players livid as they were convinced it should have been ruled out for offside but a VAR check ensured that the goal stood.

However Luis Enrique did not want to aim any anger at referee Anthony Taylor, insisting that he wanted to concentrate on his team’s positive display. “We don’t have the best point of view on pitch as coaches but I think this decision was difficult,” he added. 

“I don’t want to say anything about it. I’m used to not talking about referees and concentrate on what I can control.

“I’ve been a coach for 10 years and I’ve never spoken about referees. I’ve got nothing to say, I’m concentrating on trying to get my team to play the best way and accepting wins and losses.” — AFP

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