Tuesday, July 23, 2024

De la Fuente determined not to underestimate Georgia

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 29 Jun 2024

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Luis de la Fuente says Spain will not make the mistake of underestimating Euro 2024 surprise package Georgia in the round of 16.

Spain cruised through the so-called ‘group of death’, winning all three of their games against Croatia, Italy and Albania without conceding a single goal.

Meanwhile, Georgia progressed as one of the best third-place teams after stunning Euro 2016 champions Portugal with a 2-0 victory in their final group game.

La Roja also met Georgia in Euro 2024 qualifying, earning a memorable 7-1 victory in the away fixture.

However, De la Fuente was quick to praise the improvement in their opponents since that meeting, noting that Spain had to expect a bigger challenge this time around.

“It was a very important game for us, we arrived [in Georgia] under a lot of pressure, and we came back from that game as a family, a lot stronger than before,” said De la Fuente.

“The most important game is always the next one and now a different European Championship starts. We are bracing for a very difficult game, and we will go with the best weapons we have to get out with a win.

“We all have seen surprising things happen in football and I don’t think that will stop happening.

“Georgia beat Portugal, we have to respect them as opponents, work hard and take the game with the importance that it has so it doesn’t happen to us.

“They are fast in the counter-attack and very good in the set-pieces. We need to be vigilant and aware, so we don’t end up exposed to counter-attacks in speed.”

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