Vicente del Bosque wants his Spain team to seal qualification to the next FIFA World Cup and win the Confederations Cup in 2013.
Following European Championship success under Luis Aragones in 2008, Spain and Del Bosque collected first the 2010 FIFA World Cup and then Euro 2012, their third consecutive major trophy.
“It has been a good year for the national team,” he told AS.
“Winning the Euros, the second consecutive one after winning it with Luis in 2008, was the challenge and we have achieved it. But we must not wallow in what we have done in the past if we want to maintain this level in the future.
“Personally I am proud that this title was a joy for the country in a difficult moment, although I said at the time that it is not going to fix the problems in Spain,” he added, referring to the country’s economic woes.
Nevertheless, the former Real Madrid coach is keen to improve on his country’s already sky-high standing in the game and sees securing qualification to the 2014 FIFA World Cup as the best way of moving forward.
“The first objective is to qualify for the World Cup in Brazil,” he said.
“In March we have two decisive games, against Finland and then against France. Beating Finland would give us the calmness to go to France in a game that could be decisive.
“We know that we cannot allow ourselves to be complacent against the rivals that theoretically we should be beating, because that would be fatal.”
Del Bosque is also keen to take advantage of the upcoming Confederations Cup, and believes that the tournament can benefit the national team in their quest to win back-to-back World Cups.
“We will approach it with every respect and with the greatest expectations,” he said.
“It’s a trophy that Spain has only been in once, one that you can only participate in by being world champions, one that takes place in the same country as the next World Cup.
“The Confederations Cup is interesting. Participating helped Spain win the World Cup in 2010. We knew the stadiums (in South Africa), the atmosphere, the conditions and also the difficulties of a tournament that simulates the format of the World Cup.
“Losing against the United States in the 2009 edition was a lesson that served us well in 2010. All of those experiences served us in the World Cup. I hope that we take advantage of the next Confederations Cup in the same way, that we go to compete with the best and with the intention of winning.”
Spain have been drawn against Uruguay, Tahiti and the winners of the 2013 African Cup of Nations for the Confederations Cup, which kicks off on June 15.