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Spain national football team

Spain
Shirt badge/Association crest
Nickname(s)La Roja (The Red)
La Furia Roja (The Red Fury)[1]
AssociationReal Federación Española de Fútbol (RFEF)
ConfederationUEFA (Europe)
Head coachLuis de la Fuente
CaptainÁlvaro Morata
Most capsSergio Ramos (180)
Top scorerDavid Villa (59)
Home stadiumVarious
FIFA codeESP
First colours
Second colours
FIFA ranking
Current 8 Steady (15 February 2024)[2]
Highest1 (July 2008 – June 2009, October 2009 – March 2010, July 2010 – July 2011, October 2011 – July 2014)
Lowest25 (March 1998)
First international
 Spain 1–0 Denmark 
(Antwerp, Belgium; 28 August 1920)
Biggest win
 Spain 13–0 Bulgaria 
(Madrid, Spain; 22 August 1933)
Biggest defeat
 Italy 7–1 Spain 
(Amsterdam, Netherlands; 4 June 1928)
World Cup
Appearances16 (first in 1934)
Best resultChampions (2010)
European Championship
Appearances12 (first in 1964)
Best resultChampions (1964, 2008, 2012)
Nations League Finals
Appearances2 (first in 2021)
Best resultChampions (2023)
FIFA Confederations Cup
Appearances2 (first in 2009)
Best resultRunners-up (2013)

The Spain national football team (Spanish: Selección Española de Fútbol) has represented Spain in men's international football competitions since 1920. It is governed by the Royal Spanish Football Federation, the governing body for football in Spain.

Spain is one of eight national teams to have been crowned world champions and have participated in a total of 16 of 22 FIFA World Cups, also qualifying consistently since 1978. Spain have won three continental titles during their appearances of 11 out of 16 UEFA European Championships. It also won the 2022–23 edition of the UEFA Nations League, becoming the second national team to win three major titles (World Cup, Euro and Nations League) after France.

Spain's achievements from 2008 to 2012 have led many experts and commentators to consider this era's Spain squads one of the best ever teams in football history.[4][5][6][7][8] During this period, Spain became the only national team to win three consecutive major titles, including two back-to-back European Championships in 2008 and 2012, while becoming the first European team to win a World Cup held outside of Europe in 2010.[9] From 2008 to 2013, Spain won the FIFA Team of the Year, the second-most of any nation, behind only Brazil.[10] From the start of 2007 to the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup, Spain achieved 35 consecutive undefeated matches, a feat which they shared with Brazil, and a sport record at the time. Spain is one of only two nations to have won both the FIFA World Cup and the FIFA Women's World Cup (the other being Germany).

History

Spain national football team in the 1920 Summer Olympics in Antwerp

Spain has been a member of FIFA since its founding in 1904, even though the Spanish Football Federation was first established in 1909. The first Spain national football team was constituted in 1920, with the main objective of finding a team that would represent Spain at the 1920 Summer Olympics held in Belgium in that same year. Spain made their debut at the tournament on 28 August 1920 against Denmark, silver medalists at the last two Olympic tournaments. Spain managed to win that match by a scoreline of 1–0, eventually finishing with the silver medal.[11] Spain qualified for their first FIFA World Cup in 1934, defeating Brazil in their first game and losing in a replay to the hosts and eventual champions Italy in the quarter-finals.[12] The Spanish Civil War and World War II prevented Spain from playing any competitive matches between the 1934 World Cup and the 1950 edition's qualifiers. At the 1950 finals in Brazil, they topped their group to progress to the finals round, then finished in fourth place.[13] Until 2010, this had been Spain's highest finish in a FIFA World Cup finals.[14]

Spain won its first major international title when it hosted the 1964 European Nations' Cup held in Spain, defeating the Soviet Union 2–1 in the finals at the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium.[15] The victory would stand as Spain's lone major title for 44 years. Spain was selected as host of the 1982 FIFA World Cup, reaching the second round and four years later they reached the quarter-finals before a penalty shootout defeat to Belgium.[16] Also at UEFA Euro 1984, they lost the final against France.[17] Spain reached the quarter-finals of the 1994 World Cup. The match became controversial when Italian defender Mauro Tassotti struck Luis Enrique with his elbow inside Spain's penalty area, causing Luis Enrique to bleed profusely from his nose and mouth, but the foul was not noticed nor sanctioned by referee Sándor Puhl. Had the official acknowledged the foul, Spain would have merited a penalty kick.[18] In the 2002 World Cup, Spain won its three group play matches, then defeated the Republic of Ireland on penalties in the second round. They faced co-hosts South Korea in the quarter-finals, losing in a shootout after having two goals controversially called back for alleged infractions during regular and extra time.[19]

World Cup champions parade, celebrate as they pass in front of the Air Force Headquarters in Madrid.

At UEFA Euro 2008, Spain won all their games in Group D. Italy were the opponents in the quarter-finals match, which Spain won 4–2 on penalties. They then met Russia again in the semi-finals, beating them 3–0.[20] In the final, Spain defeated Germany 1–0, with Fernando Torres scoring the only goal of the game.[21] This was Spain's first major title since the 1964 European Championship. Xavi was awarded the player of the tournament.[nb 1] The following year the side finished third at the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup breaking their 35-match unbeaten streak that began in November 2006 after a loss to the United States.[22] In the 2010 World Cup, Spain advanced to the final for the first time ever by defeating Germany 1–0. In the decisive match against the Netherlands, Andrés Iniesta scored the match's only goal, coming in extra time. Spain became the third team to win a World Cup outside their own continent, and the first European team to do so. Goalkeeper Iker Casillas won the golden glove for only conceding two goals during the tournament, while David Villa won the bronze ball and silver boot, tied for top scorer of the tournament. Spain qualified top of Group I in qualification for UEFA Euro 2012 with a perfect 100% record.[4] They became the first team to retain the European Championship, winning the final 4–0 against Italy, while Fernando Torres won the Golden Boot for top scorer of the tournament.[23]

Spain advanced to the final of the 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup, losing to hosts Brazil,[24] and the following year they were eliminated from the group stage of the 2014 World Cup.[25] At Euro 2016 and the 2018 World Cup, the side reached the last 16 in both tournaments, losing to Italy 2–0 and Russia 3–2 on penalties after a 1–1 draw.[26][27] In the UEFA Euro 2020, held in 2021 after COVID-19 pandemic caused delays, Spain made a breakthrough, reaching the last four of a major tournament for the first time since 2012, before losing to eventual champions Italy 4–2 on penalties after a 1–1 draw. The team finished the tournament with two wins and four draws (including two penalty shootouts).[28] The same year they managed to reach the 2021 UEFA Nations League final, losing against France.[29] In the 2022 World Cup, Spain finished second in their group, then in the round of 16, they lost to Morocco 3–0 on penalties after a 0–0 draw, to be the third consecutive elimination from a major tournament in penalty shootouts.[30]

Spain will host the FIFA World Cup for the second time in 2030. As co-host alongside Morocco and Portugal, they have automatically qualified for the tournament.

Team image

Nicknames

Spain's team is commonly known by fans as "La Furia Roja", meaning the Red Fury in Spanish.[1] recalling the "Sack of Antwerp" – an episode in the military history of Spain.[31] However, there are another unofficial nicknames to refer to the national team of Spain.

The other most common nickname, known by fans, is "Los Toros" (Fighting Bulls), since Spanish Fighting Bull is one of Spain's famous national treasures and often used to define Spanish culture, and also often depicted by Spanish supporters alike.[32] The Spain football team is sometimes referred as the Bulls due to this cultural heritage.[33]

The Spanish team also received other nicknames, mostly "Toreros" or "Matador" (Bullfighters in Spanish), to describe its passionate and romantic style of football playing.[34]

Style of play

Spain, UEFA Euro 2008 winners
Spain's players celebrate winning the 2010 FIFA World Cup
Spain, UEFA Euro 2012 winners

Between 2008 and 2012, the team played a style of football dubbed 'tiki-taka', a systems approach to football founded upon the ideal of team unity and a comprehensive understanding in the geometry of space on a football field.[35]

Tiki-taka has been variously described as "a style of play based on making your way to the back of the net through short passing and movement",[36] a "short passing style in which the ball is worked carefully through various channels",[37] and a "nonsensical phrase that has come to mean short passing, patience and possession above all else".[38] The style involves roaming movement and positional interchange amongst midfielders, moving the ball in intricate patterns,[39] and sharp, one or two-touch passing.[40] Tiki-taka is "both defensive and offensive in equal measure" – the team is always in possession, so doesn't need to switch between defending and attacking.[41] Commentators have contrasted tiki-taka with "Route One physicality"[36] and with the higher-tempo passing of Barcelona and Arsène Wenger's 2007–08 Arsenal side, which employed Cesc Fàbregas as the only channel between defence and attack.[37] Tiki-taka is associated with flair, creativity, and touch,[42] but can also be taken to a "slow, directionless extreme" that sacrifices effectiveness for aesthetics.[38]

Tiki-taka was successfully employed by Spain to win Euro 2008, the 2010 World Cup and Euro 2012. The 2008–12 teams are regarded as being among the greatest of international teams in football history.[6][4][5]

They have the Barcelona "carousel" of Xavi and Andrés Iniesta augmented by Real Madrid's Xabi Alonso in midfield.

— Phil McNulty of the BBC on the midfield players at the heart of Spain's tiki-taka passing style of play.[4]

Sid Lowe identifies Luis Aragonés' tempering of tiki-taka with pragmatism as a key factor in Spain's success in Euro 2008. Aragonés used tiki-taka to "protect a defense that appeared suspect [...], maintain possession and dominate games" without taking the style to "evangelical extremes". None of Spain's first six goals in the tournament came from tiki-taka: five came from direct breaks and one from a set play.[38] For Lowe, Spain's success in the 2010 World Cup was evidence of the meeting of two traditions in Spanish football: the "powerful, aggressive, direct" style that earned the silver medal-winning 1920 Antwerp Olympic team the nickname La Furia Roja ("The Red Fury") and the tiki-taka style of the contemporary Spain's team, which focused on a collective, short-passing, technical and possession-based game.[43]

Analyzing Spain's semi-final victory over Germany at the 2010 World Cup, Raphael Honigstein described Spain's tiki-taka style as "the most difficult version of football possible: an uncompromising passing game, coupled with intense, high pressing". For Honigstein, tiki-taka is "a significant upgrade" of the Netherlands' Total Football because it relies on ball movement rather than players switching position. Tiki-taka allowed Spain to "control both the ball and the opponent".[41]

We have the same idea as each other. Keep the ball, create movement around and off the ball, get in the spaces to cause danger.

— Xabi Alonso (Spanish midfielder).[40]

Kits and crest

Spain's kit is traditionally a red jersey with yellow trim, dark blue shorts, and black socks, whilst their current away kit is all predominantly white. The colour of the socks altered throughout the 1990s from black to the same blue colour as the shorts, matching either the blue of the shorts or the red of the shirt until the mid-2010s when they returned to their traditional black. Spain's kits have been produced by manufacturers including Adidas (from 1981 until 1983), Le Coq Sportif (from 1983 until 1991) and Adidas once again (since 1991). Rather than displaying the logo of the Spanish Football Federation, Spain's jersey traditionally features the country's coat of arms over the left side. After winning the 2010 World Cup, the World Cup winners badge was added to the right side of the jersey and a golden star at the top of Spain's coat of arms.

Kit suppliers

Kit supplier Period Notes
None 1920–1935
Spain/Spain Deportes Cóndor 1935–1966
1967–1981
England Umbro 1966
West Germany/Germany Adidas 1981–1983
1991–present
Current until 2030[44][45]
France Le Coq Sportif 1984–1990

Home stadium

Spain does not have a designated national stadium. The capital city of Madrid (Bernabéu and Metropolitano), Seville (Pizjuán, La Cartuja and Villamarín), Valencia (Mestalla and Orriols) and Barcelona (Camp Nou and Montjuïc), are the four Spanish cities that have hosted more than 15 national team matches, while also being home to the largest stadiums in the country.[46]

Other friendly matches, as well as qualifying fixtures against smaller opponents, are played in provincial stadia. The 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification campaign included matches at the Reino de León in León,[47] Los Cármenes in Granada,[48] El Molinón in Gijón,[49] and the Rico Pérez in Alicante.[50]

Media coverage

Spain's UEFA European Qualifiers and UEFA Nations League matches, and all friendly games from 2018 until 2022, will be televised nationwide by La 1, flagship television channel of the public broadcaster TVE.[51]

Rivalries

Spain has four main rivalries with other top footballing nations.

  • Their rivalry with Italy, sometimes referred to as the Mediterranean Derby,[52] contested since 1920. Although the two nations are not immediate geographical neighbours, their rivalry at international level is enhanced by the strong performances of the representative clubs in UEFA competitions, in which they are among the leading associations and have each enjoyed spells of dominance.[53][54] Since the quarter-finals match between the two countries at Euro 2008, the rivalry has renewed, with its most notable match between the two sides being in the UEFA Euro 2012 final, which Spain won 4–0.[55][56]
  • Their rivalry with Portugal, also known as the Iberian Derby, is one of the oldest football rivalries at a national level. It began on 18 December 1921, when Portugal lost 3–1 to Spain at Madrid in their first ever international friendly game. Portugal lost their first matches, with their first draw (2–2) only coming in 1926. Portugal's first win came much later (4–1) in 1947. Both belong to the strongest football nations of the world, and have met a total of 39 times (of which 9 matches were competitive) which resulted in 16 victories for Spain, 17 draws and 6 victories for Portugal.
  • Their rivalry with France, also another major football force, is also one of the oldest at a national level. Spain and France have met a total of 36 times, began with a 4–0 triumph for Spain in a friendly in Bordeaux on 30 April 1922, though their first competitive meeting came in the UEFA Euro 1984 final, which France won to take over its first major international honours.[57][58] Spain has the advantage in head-to-head competition with 16 wins, 13 losses and 7 draws, though France has gotten more international glories than Spain.
  • Their rivalry with Germany, is also one of the oldest at a national level. Germany and Spain have faced each other 26 times, started with a 2–1 friendly victory for Spain on 12 May 1935 in Cologne. However, Spain only met a German side for the first time in any competitive fixture in 1966, as part of the 1966 FIFA World Cup, where West Germany (competing separately form East Germany at the time) came back to win 2–1.[59] However, since the reunification of Germany in 1990, Spain has remained undefeated in competitive fixtures against Germany, including the famous 6–0 rout in the 2020–21 UEFA Nations League A.[60] Total head-to-head result however is slightly favourable for Germany with 9 wins, 9 draws compared to 8 wins by Spain.

Results and fixtures

The following is a list of match results in the last 12 months, as well as any future matches that have been scheduled.

  Win   Draw   Loss   Fixture

2023

25 March 2023 Euro 2024 Q Spain  3–0  Norway Málaga, Spain
20:45 CEST (UTC+02:00)
  • Olmo 13'
  • Joselu 84', 85'
Report Stadium: La Rosaleda
Attendance: 29,214
Referee: Benoît Bastien (France)
28 March 2023 Euro 2024 Q Scotland  2–0  Spain Glasgow, Scotland
20:45 CEST (UTC+02:00)
Report Stadium: Hampden Park
Attendance: 47,976
Referee: Sandro Schärer (Switzerland)
15 June 2023 2022–23 UEFA Nations League SF Spain  2–1  Italy Enschede, Netherlands
20:45 CEST (UTC+02:00)
Report
Stadium: De Grolsch Veste
Attendance: 24,558
Referee: Slavko Vinčić (Slovenia)
18 June 2023 2022–23 UEFA Nations League F Croatia  0–0 (a.e.t.)
(4–5 p)
 Spain Rotterdam, Netherlands
20:45 CEST (UTC+02:00) Report Stadium: De Kuip
Attendance: 41,110
Referee: Felix Zwayer (Germany)
Penalties
Note: Spain won on penalties 5–4
8 September 2023 Euro 2024 Q Georgia  1–7  Spain Tbilisi, Georgia
18:00 CEST (UTC+02:00) Report
Stadium: Boris Paichadze Dinamo Arena
Attendance: 51,694
Referee: Daniel Siebert (Germany)
12 September 2023 Euro 2024 Q Spain  6–0  Cyprus Granada, Spain
20:45 CEST (UTC+02:00)
Report Stadium: Nuevo Los Cármenes
Attendance: 17,311
Referee: Simone Sozza (Italia)
12 October 2023 Euro 2024 Q Spain  2–0  Scotland Seville, Spain
20:45 CEST (UTC+02:00)
Report Stadium: La Cartuja
Attendance: 45,623
Referee: Serdar Gözübüyük (Netherlands)
15 October 2023 Euro 2024 Q Norway  0–1  Spain Oslo, Norway
20:45 CEST (UTC+02:00) Report
Stadium: Ullevaal Stadion
Attendance: 25,885
Referee: Tobias Stieler (Germany)
16 November 2023 Euro 2024 Q Cyprus  1–3  Spain Limassol, Cyprus
18:00 CET (UTC+01:00)
Report
Stadium: Alphamega Stadium
Attendance: 9,667
Referee: Mykola Balakin (Ukraine)
19 November 2023 Euro 2024 Q Spain  3–1  Georgia Valladolid, Spain
20:45 CET (UTC+01:00) Report Stadium: José Zorrilla
Attendance: 24,146
Referee: Ovidiu Hațegan (Romania)

2024

22 March 2024 Friendly Spain  v  Colombia London, England
Stadium: London Stadium
26 March 2024 Friendly Spain  v  Brazil Madrid, Spain
Stadium: Santiago Bernabéu
15 June 2024 Euro 2024 Group B Spain  v  Croatia Berlin, Germany
18:00 UTC+2 Report Stadium: Olympiastadion
20 June 2024 Euro 2024 Group B Spain  v  Italy Gelsenkirchen, Germany
21:00 UTC+2 Report Stadium: Arena AufSchalke
24 June 2024 Euro 2024 Group B Albania  v  Spain Düsseldorf, Germany
21:00 UTC+2 Report Stadium: Merkur Spiel-Arena
5 September 2024 2024–25 UEFA Nations League Serbia  v  Spain Serbia
20:45 CEST Report Stadium: TBD
8 September 2024 2024–25 UEFA Nations League Switzerland  v  Spain Switzerland
20:45 CEST Report Stadium: TBD
12 October 2024 2024–25 UEFA Nations League Spain  v  Denmark Spain
20:45 CEST Report Stadium: TBD
15 October 2024 2024–25 UEFA Nations League Spain  v  Serbia Spain
20:45 CEST Report Stadium: TBD
15 November 2024 2024–25 UEFA Nations League Denmark  v  Spain Denmark
20:45 CEST Report Stadium: TBD
18 November 2024 2024–25 UEFA Nations League Spain  v   Switzerland Spain
20:45 CEST Report Stadium: TBD

Coaching staff

Role Name
Head coach Spain Luis de la Fuente
Assistant coach Spain Pablo Amo
Goalkeeping coach Spain Miguel Ángel España
Fitness coach Spain Carlos Cruz
Data analysts Spain Geri Peica
Spain Juanjo González
Psychologist Spain Joaquín Valdés
Video analyst Spain Pablo Peña
Doctor Spain Juan José García Cota
Physiotherapists Spain Lorenzo del Pozo
Spain Raúl Martínez
Spain Miguel Gutiérrez
Spain Juan Carlos Herranz
Spain Fernando Galán del Río
Kit men Spain Joaquín Retamosa
Spain José Damián García
Spain Antonio Guerra
Sporting director Spain Albert Luque
Team manager Spain Nuria Martínez Navas
Delegate Spain Pedro Cortés

Players

Current squad

The following players were called up for the UEFA Euro 2024 qualifying Group A matches against Cyprus and Georgia on 16 and 19 November 2023, respectively.[61]

Caps and goals updated as of 19 November 2023, after the match against Georgia.

No. Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club
1 1GK David Raya (1995-09-15) 15 September 1995 (age 28) 3 0 England Arsenal
13 1GK Álex Remiro (1995-03-24) 24 March 1995 (age 28) 0 0 Spain Real Sociedad
23 1GK Unai Simón (1997-06-11) 11 June 1997 (age 26) 38 0 Spain Athletic Bilbao

2 2DF Álex Grimaldo (1995-09-20) 20 September 1995 (age 28) 1 0 Germany Bayer Leverkusen
3 2DF Robin Le Normand (1996-11-11) 11 November 1996 (age 27) 8 1 Spain Real Sociedad
5 2DF Iñigo Martínez (1991-05-17) 17 May 1991 (age 32) 21 1 Spain Barcelona
14 2DF José Gayà (1995-05-25) 25 May 1995 (age 28) 22 3 Spain Valencia
15 2DF David García (1994-02-14) 14 February 1994 (age 30) 3 0 Spain Osasuna
20 2DF Dani Carvajal (1992-01-11) 11 January 1992 (age 32) 42 0 Spain Real Madrid
22 2DF Jesús Navas (1985-11-21) 21 November 1985 (age 38) 50 5 Spain Sevilla

4 3MF Rodrigo Riquelme (2000-05-02) 2 May 2000 (age 23) 2 0 Spain Atlético Madrid
6 3MF Mikel Merino (1996-06-22) 22 June 1996 (age 27) 19 1 Spain Real Sociedad
8 3MF Fabián Ruiz (1996-04-03) 3 April 1996 (age 27) 21 1 France Paris Saint-Germain
9 3MF Gavi (2004-08-05) 5 August 2004 (age 19) 27 5 Spain Barcelona
16 3MF Rodri (1996-06-22) 22 June 1996 (age 27) 48 1 England Manchester City
18 3MF Martín Zubimendi (1999-02-02) 2 February 1999 (age 25) 4 0 Spain Real Sociedad
19 3MF Oihan Sancet (2000-04-25) 25 April 2000 (age 23) 3 1 Spain Athletic Bilbao

7 4FW Álvaro Morata (captain) (1992-10-23) 23 October 1992 (age 31) 69 34 Spain Atlético Madrid
11 4FW Ferran Torres (2000-02-29) 29 February 2000 (age 23) 40 18 Spain Barcelona
12 4FW Joselu (1990-03-27) 27 March 1990 (age 33) 9 5 Spain Real Madrid
17 4FW Lamine Yamal (2007-07-13) 13 July 2007 (age 16) 4 2 Spain Barcelona

Recent call-ups

The following players have also been called up for the team in the last twelve months.

Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club Latest call-up
GK Kepa Arrizabalaga (1994-10-03) 3 October 1994 (age 29) 13 0 Spain Real Madrid v.  Norway, 15 October 2023

DF Pau Torres (1997-01-16) 16 January 1997 (age 27) 24 1 England Aston Villa v.  Cyprus, 16 November 2023
DF Aymeric Laporte (1994-05-27) 27 May 1994 (age 29) 26 1 Saudi Arabia Al Nassr v.  Norway, 15 October 2023
DF Alejandro Balde (2003-10-18) 18 October 2003 (age 20) 7 0 Spain Barcelona v.  Scotland, 12 October 2023 INJ
DF César Azpilicueta (1989-08-28) 28 August 1989 (age 34) 44 1 Spain Atlético Madrid v. Cyprus, 12 September 2023

MF Álex Baena (2001-07-20) 20 July 2001 (age 22) 1 1 Spain Villarreal v.  Cyprus, 12 September 2023

FW Mikel Oyarzabal (1997-04-21) 21 April 1997 (age 26) 26 7 Spain Real Sociedad v.  Cyprus, 16 November 2023
FW Ansu Fati (2002-10-31) 31 October 2002 (age 21) 10 2 England Brighton & Hove Albion v.  Norway, 15 October 2023
FW Yeremy Pino (2002-10-20) 20 October 2002 (age 21) 12 2 Spain Villarreal v.  Scotland, 12 October 2023 INJ
FW Abel Ruiz (2000-01-28) 28 January 2000 (age 24) 2 0 Portugal Braga v.  Cyprus, 12 September 2023
FW Dani Olmo (1998-05-07) 7 May 1998 (age 25) 32 7 Germany RB Leipzig v.  Georgia, 8 September 2023 INJ
FW Marco Asensio (1996-01-21) 21 January 1996 (age 28) 38 2 France Paris Saint-Germain v.  Georgia, 8 September 2023 INJ

INJ Player withdrew from the squad due to an injury
PRE Preliminary squad / standby
WD Player withdrew from the squad due to non-injury issue
RET Player retired from the national team
SUS Player is serving suspension

Previous squads

World Cup
European Championship
UEFA Nations League Finals
Confederations Cup
Olympic Games

Individual records

Player records

Sergio Ramos holds the record for most appearances for the Spain's team with 180.[62] In second place is Iker Casillas with 167, followed by Sergio Busquets with 143.[62]

David Villa holds the title of Spain's highest goalscorer, scoring 59 goals from 2005 to 2017, during which time he played for Spain on 98 occasions.[62] Raúl González is the second highest goalscorer, scoring 44 goals in 102 appearances between 1996 and 2006.[62]

Most capped players

Sergio Ramos holds the record for the most appearances in the history of Spain with 180 caps

Below is a list of the ten players with the most caps for Spain, as of 6 December 2022.[62]

Players in bold are still active with Spain.
Rank Player Caps Goals Period
1 Sergio Ramos 180 23 2005–2021
2 Iker Casillas 167 0 2000–2016
3 Sergio Busquets 143 2 2009–2022
4 Xavi 133 13 2000–2014
5 Andrés Iniesta 131 13 2006–2018
6 Andoni Zubizarreta 126 0 1985–1998
7 David Silva 125 35 2006–2018
8 Xabi Alonso 114 16 2003–2014
9 Cesc Fàbregas 110 15 2006–2016
Fernando Torres 110 38 2003–2014

Youngest capped player

Oldest capped player

Top goalscorers

David Villa is the top scorer in the history of Spain with 59 goals

Below is a list of the top ten goalscorers for Spain, as of 19 November 2023.[64][65][62]

Rank Player Goals Caps Average Period
1 David Villa (list) 59 98 0.6 2005–2017
2 Raúl (list) 44 102 0.43 1996–2006
3 Fernando Torres (list) 38 110 0.35 2003–2014
4 David Silva 35 125 0.28 2006–2018
5 Álvaro Morata 34 69 0.49 2014–present
6 Fernando Hierro 29 89 0.33 1989–2002
7 Fernando Morientes 27 47 0.57 1998–2007
8 Emilio Butragueño 26 69 0.38 1984–1992
9 Alfredo Di Stéfano (list) 23 31 0.74 1957–1961
Sergio Ramos 23 180 0.13 2005–2021

Youngest goalscorer

Oldest goalscorer

Most goals scored in a single match

First goal scored

Captains

List of Spain's captains in majors tournaments.

Manager records

  • Most manager appearances
Vicente del Bosque: 114

Team records

Competitive record

FIFA World Cup

Although often entering tournaments as one of the favorites, Spain have often been perceived as underachieving at the World Cup.[73][74] Spain's first World Cup was in 1934. At that World Cup, Spain started their campaign by defeating Brazil 3–1 to advance to the quarter-finals, where they lost to hosts Italy in a replay.[75] Before Spain's success in 2010, their best result came in 1950, where they reached the last four. Spain were paired with the hosts Brazil, as well as Uruguay and Sweden.[76] Spain managed a draw against Uruguay but defeats from Brazil and Sweden meant that Spain would end up in fourth place.[76] At the 2010 FIFA World Cup held in South Africa, Spain became world champions for the first time after defeating the Netherlands 1–0 in the final, becoming the eighth country to win the World Cup.[77][78]

  Champions    Runners-up    Third place     Tournament played fully or partially on home soil  

FIFA World Cup record Qualification record
Year Round Position Pld W D L GF GA Pld W D L GF GA
Uruguay 1930 Did not enter Did not enter
Italy 1934 Quarter-finals 5th 3 1 1 1 4 3 2 2 0 0 11 1
France 1938 Withdrew Withdrew
Brazil 1950 Fourth place 4th 6 3 1 2 10 12 2 1 1 0 7 3
Switzerland 1954 Did not qualify 3 1 1 1 6 4
Sweden 1958 4 2 1 1 12 8
Chile 1962 Group stage 13th 3 1 0 2 2 3 4 3 1 0 7 4
England 1966 10th 3 1 0 2 4 5 3 2 0 1 5 2
Mexico 1970 Did not qualify 6 2 2 2 10 6
West Germany 1974 5 2 2 1 8 6
Argentina 1978 Group stage 10th 3 1 1 1 2 2 4 3 0 1 4 1
Spain 1982 Second group stage 12th 5 1 2 2 4 5 Qualified as host
Mexico 1986 Quarter-finals 7th 5 3 1 1 11 4 6 4 0 2 9 8
Italy 1990 Round of 16 10th 4 2 1 1 6 4 8 6 1 1 20 3
United States 1994 Quarter-finals 8th 5 2 2 1 10 6 12 8 3 1 27 4
France 1998 Group stage 17th 3 1 1 1 8 4 10 8 2 0 26 6
South Korea Japan 2002 Quarter-finals 5th 5 3 2 0 10 5 8 6 2 0 21 4
Germany 2006 Round of 16 9th 4 3 0 1 9 4 12 6 6 0 25 5
South Africa 2010 Champions 1st 7 6 0 1 8 2 10 10 0 0 28 5
Brazil 2014 Group stage 23rd 3 1 0 2 4 7 8 6 2 0 14 3
Russia 2018 Round of 16 10th 4 1 3 0 7 6 10 9 1 0 36 3
Qatar 2022 13th 4 1 2 1 9 3 8 6 1 1 15 5
Canada Mexico United States 2026 To be determined To be determined
Morocco Portugal Spain 2030 Qualified as co-hosts Qualified as co-hosts
Saudi Arabia 2034 To be determined To be determined
Total 1 Title 16/22 67 31 17 19 108 75 125 87 26 12 291 81

UEFA European Championship

Spain have won the joint most UEFA European Championships, along with Germany (three titles).[79] La Roja are also the only nation to date to have won consecutive championships. They have hosted the tournament once, in 1964 (one city was used to host games at Euro 2020) and have appeared in a total of eleven tournaments, with an upcoming twelfth appearance in 2024.

The team won their first international trophy on home soil in 1964, defeating the Soviet Union 2–1.[80][81] Spain would reach the final twenty years later in 1984, where they would lose the final to France. Spain would not reach the final again until 2008, where they would defeat Germany 1–0. Four years later, Spain earned back-to-back titles, comprehensively defeating Italy 4–0 in the final in Kyiv.

UEFA European Championship record Qualification record
Year Round Position Pld W D L GF GA Pld W D L GF GA
France 1960 Withdrew 2 2 0 0 7 2
Spain 1964 Champions 1st 2 2 0 0 4 2 6 4 1 1 16 5
Italy 1968 Did not qualify 8 3 2 3 7 5
Belgium 1972 6 3 2 1 14 3
Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia 1976 8 3 4 1 11 9
Italy 1980 Group stage 7th 3 0 1 2 2 4 6 4 1 1 13 5
France 1984 Runners-up 2nd 5 1 3 1 4 5 8 6 1 1 24 8
West Germany 1988 Group stage 6th 3 1 0 2 3 5 6 5 0 1 14 6
Sweden 1992 Did not qualify 7 3 0 4 17 12
England 1996 Quarter-finals 6th 4 1 3 0 4 3 10 8 2 0 25 4
Belgium Netherlands 2000 5th 4 2 0 2 7 7 8 7 0 1 42 5
Portugal 2004 Group stage 10th 3 1 1 1 2 2 10 7 2 1 21 5
Austria Switzerland 2008 Champions 1st 6 5 1 0 12 3 12 9 1 2 23 8
Poland Ukraine 2012 Champions 1st 6 4 2 0 12 1 8 8 0 0 26 6
France 2016 Round of 16 10th 4 2 0 2 5 4 10 9 0 1 23 3
Europe 2020 Semi-finals 3rd 6 2 4 0 13 6 10 8 2 0 31 5
Germany 2024 Qualified 8 7 0 1 25 5
United Kingdom Republic of Ireland 2028 To be determined To be determined
Italy Turkey 2032
Total 3 Titles 46 21 15 10 68 42 133 96 18 19 339 96

UEFA Nations League

Since the inaugural UEFA Nations League, La Roja have remained in League A and have reached the UEFA Nations League Finals on two occasions. At the 2021 Finals, Spain won their semi-final after defeating Italy 2–1 but lost to France in the final.[82][83] In the following campaign, La Roja would again reach the final thanks to another win against Italy.[84] Spain would then beat Croatia on penalties after a 0–0 draw.[84]

UEFA Nations League record
League phase Finals
Season LG GP Pos Pld W D L GF GA P/R RK Year Pos Pld W D* L GF GA Squad
2018–19 A 4 2nd 4 2 0 2 12 7 Same position 7th Portugal 2019 Did not qualify
2020–21 A 4 1st 6 3 2 1 13 3 Same position 2nd Italy 2021 Runners-up 2 1 0 1 3 3 Squad
2022–23 A 2 1st 6 3 2 1 8 5 Same position 1st Netherlands 2023 Champions 2 1 1 0 2 1 Squad
2024–25 A To be determined 2025 To be determined
Total 16 8 4 4 33 15 1st Total 4 2 1 1 5 4 1 title

*Draws include knockout matches decided on penalty kicks.

FIFA Confederations Cup

Spain made two appearances at the FIFA Confederations. Their first appearance came in 2009 when they won a third place medal.[85] Spain had lost 2–0 to the United States in the semi-finals.[86] At the next edition, Spain qualified as World champions.[87] La Roja reached the final in Brazil, but lost 3–0 to the hosts.[88]

FIFA Confederations Cup record
Year Round Position Pld W D L GF GA
Saudi Arabia 1992 UEFA did not participate
Saudi Arabia 1995 Did not qualify
Saudi Arabia 1997
Mexico 1999
South Korea Japan 2001
France 2003
Germany 2005
South Africa 2009 Third place 3rd 5 4 0 1 11 4
Brazil 2013 Runners-up 2nd 5 3 1 1 15 4
Russia 2017 Did not qualify
Total Runners-up 10 7 1 2 26 8

Head-to-head record

All-time results

The following table shows Spain's all-time international record, correct as of 14 June 2021.[citation needed]

Played Won Drawn Lost GF GA
Total 716 418 166 132 1434 643

Honours

Source:[89]

Major titles

Awards

Overview
Event 1st place 2nd place 3rd place 4th place
FIFA World Cup 1 0 0 1
Olympic Games 1 3 0 0
FIFA Confederations Cup 0 1 1 0
UEFA European Championship 3 1 1 0
UEFA Nations League 1 1 0 0
Total 6 6 2 1

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Spanish players named in the team of the tournament were: goalkeeper and captain Iker Casillas; defenders Carles Puyol and Carlos Marchena; midfielders Xavi, Cesc Fàbregas, Andrés Iniesta and Marcos Senna; and strikers David Villa and Fernando Torres.

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