Spain name three Euro 2012 winners in Olympic squad
Euro 2012 winners Juan Mata, Jordi Alba and Javi Martinez were included in Spain’s preliminary soccer squad on Tuesday for the London Olympics later this month.
Chelsea midfielder Mata and full back Alba, who is set to leave Valencia for Barcelona this week, scored in Sunday’s 4-0 final victory over Italy in Kiev.
The world champions became the first side to retain the European title, stringing together three major tournament triumphs in a row.
Luis Milla’s 22-man Olympic squad was named the day after Mata, Alba and Athletic Bilbao midfielder Martinez were involved in a huge homecoming celebration as the team paraded the trophy through the streets of Madrid.
“I believe it would be unfair to demand that this team be at the same level as the full national team,” Milla told a news conference.
“This team has character and a similar playing philosophy but it is a different team under different pressures.”
The Olympic team will join up on Friday and will face Senegal and Mexico in friendlies before heading to London.
The squad, which will be trimmed down to 18, also includes Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea, Chelsea midfielder Oriol Romeu and Barcelona trio Martin Montoya, Thiago Alcantara and Cristian Tello.