Spain coach Vicente del Bosque has hinted he may make changes to his team as they travel to Skopje to face Macedonia.
Spain arrive in Macedonia as joint leaders of Group C after their 2-0 win over Slovakia edged them to the top of the table.
Del Bosque will expect his side to win comfortably against Macedonia, who they beat 5-1 in Valencia on the same date a year ago, after a performance against Slovakia that showed signs of Spain being back to their best.
“Against Macedonia I do not know if I will make changes, but I will not be afraid to make them,” said Del Bosque.
“We have played well and we had a few chances. We have taken the initiative. We have managed to solve the problems posed to us.”
Spain midfielder David Silva indicated that he felt that the quick-passing football of Spain’s all-conquering team of 2008 was back.
He said: “I hope we qualify and we’ll see what happens in the tournament. All matches are important, and Macedonia too.
“We are a team of touch, and we’ve shown that since 2008. We always play well, but it is not easy. Teams are enclosed and it is very complicated. The fact that we scored early [against Slovakia] helped us.”
Chelsea striker Diego Costa received Del Bosque’s backing after his failure to score against Slovakia, but Paco Alcacer, who replaced Costa after 75 minutes against Slovakia, may be drafted in to spare the former further criticism from fans and the media should his poor form of one goal in eight internationals continue.
Defender Gerard Pique may be glad for the trip to the Macedonian capital after he was jeered by his nation’s own fans in Oviedo.
The Barcelona man has received plenty of support from team-mates following the events of Saturday.
Macedonia will be keen to bounce back from their 1-0 defeat to fellow strugglers Luxembourg, but they will be without five players, including suspended striker Besart Abdurahimi.
The 25-year-old Lokeren striker is one of two players who picked up bookings against Luxembourg that rule them out of the Spain game, with defender Kire Ristevski also missing out.
Injuries to midfielders Arijan Ademi and Daniel Mojsov mean Macedonia coach Ljubinko Drulovic will be unable to field his strongest side, and forward Aleksandar Trajkovski will face a late fitness test ahead of the game.
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