Saturday, September 23, 2017

Lopetegui lauds Isco for impressive display

SoccerNews in World Cup 3 Sep 2017

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Spain coach Julen Lopetegui praised Isco after the attacker’s match-winning display against Italy in World Cup qualifying.

Isco scored a first-half brace before Alvaro Morata came off the bench to seal Spain’s 3-0 victory at the Santiago Bernabeu on Saturday.

While he preferred to focus on his team’s performance, Lopetegui hailed Isco, who curled in a stunning 20-yard free-kick before later beating Gianluigi Buffon from outside the area for a second time.

“He made a great match, like the rest of his team-mates. He unlocked the match,” Lopetegui said of the Real Madrid attacker.

“He scored two fantastic goals and has been very good under pressure. He wants to be a main player and fortunately he is with us.

“He has had more games and it makes you grow, mature and become more polished. He is a great player. He has grown significantly with and without the ball.”

The result saw Spain make it six wins in seven qualifiers, lifting them three points clear atop the table.

Lopetegui was pleased with the result as his side moved a step closer to Russia 2018.

“We had great confidence, tremendous spirit and knew how to solve complicated moments,” he said.

“I’m content and satisfied because it was a very complicated opponent.”

Spain are back in action with a clash against Liechtenstein on Tuesday.

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