Low key friendly as Spain entertain Costa Rica

Madrid, June 10 (IANS) Spain will play Costa Rica in what is likely to be a low-key football friendly in Leon on Thursday night.

Spain coach Vicente del Bosque said on Tuesday that the game was not coming at the best time of the year, given that La Liga season ended nearly three weeks ago, while FC Barcelona played Juventus in the Champions League final on Saturday and spent Sunday celebrating, reports Xinhua.

He has already lost midfielder Andres Iniesta with a muscle injury while Gerard Pique and Jordi Alba missed Tuesday’s session with slight problems. As a result, Thursday is likely to see del Bosque use the match to give players who have not played for three weeks a run out ahead of Sunday’s far more important 2016 European Championship tie in Belarus.

He is unlikely to use many Barcelona players with Pique and Alba set to sit out along with Sergio Busquets although Pedro Rodriguez, who was a substitute on Saturday, could start.

Meanwhile, del Bosque will also have to decide whether or not Alberto Morata, who played for Juventus, starts. That could be good news for players such as Nolito, Paco Alcacer and Vitolo, as well as wing back, Alexis Vidal, who could make his debut just four days after signing for Barcelona.

Goalkeeper Sergio Rico could also make his debut, although if he does it will be as a substitute for either Iker Casillas or David de Gea. The two goalkeepers are under the spotlight at the moment as de Gea appears to close in on a move to Real Madrid, which could push Casillas out of the club where he has spent his entire career.

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