SportsThe peculiar club of Luis Enrique

    The peculiar club of Luis Enrique

    The peculiar club of Luis Enrique

    While he persists in technological innovations such as placing a mini-speaker on the players’ backs so that they can listen to his instructions during training sessions, which he directs from the top of a scaffold with a walkie, the Spanish coach refines these days what can be called the Luis Enrique Football Club. Two months before the World Cup, the coach from Gijon has accentuated in the last list before the appointment in Qatar his profile as a club coach to act as coach. The weight of the performance of the internationals in his teams is a basic guide, but also the merits that they have contracted before him. “I have brought many of those players who claim me [la prensa] in the selection. I have asked them what I have asked them and then I have seen the result. Can they come back? Of course they can come back if I see what I ask of them again”, explained the coach last Friday after announcing the list. Under this argument, the presence of footballers who have not started the season as key players in their respective clubs is justified.

    In the list of 25 summoned for the two games in which Spain is playing for the final four of the League of Nations, against Switzerland, on Saturday in Zaragoza, and Portugal, on Tuesday, in Braga, Luis Enrique has left clues of which internationals can go to the World Cup without having to be very used in their teams. Cesar Azpilicueta has lost his status as undisputed at Chelsea for the time being, but he earned his status as untouchable since the European Championship. For the coach, he represents a streak of defensive reliability as a right-back or as an experienced center-back and as a veteran unifier of young people when it comes to forming a group. Ferran Torres and Pablo Sarabia, secondaries at Barcelona and PSG, have faith in scoring and their virtue of being wingers who can play inside. The case of Jordi Alba is very particular. In some of the absences from his lists, his level was selection. Now he is not a starter at Barca, but he is endorsed, in addition to his war veteran’s coat, by the opinion that the coach has of him. He considers that when he is at his best level, he is one of the best in the world in his position. For the Valencian player Gaya, absent from the first four league games due to injury, he also feels weakness. He has always yielded to him and has understood the importance of full-backs in the offensive game through combinations. Only a stellar irruption of Marcos Alonso in Barcelona could leave one of the two out of the list for the World Cup. Carlos Soler will not have an easy time assaulting ownership after his transfer from Valencia to PSG. He has carved out a niche for himself among the midfielders for his vision of the game and his touch to connect with wide players and strikers. Also for his arrival from the second line and for being a specialist in executing set pieces.

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    The inclusion of Marco Asensio has a lot to do with the doubts that Ansu Fati offers with a view to the World Cup and the casualties of Oyarzabal and Dani Olmo. Luis Enrique will take Qatar to what he has been one of his big bets if he gains confidence in his game and in his physique. If not, Asensio may have options for nothing other than his appearances at Madrid being more than minimal and showing the unbalanced player that the coach had as a key piece when he took over in 2018.

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    “Our objective is to look for players who form a team. There are punctual players in a team that stand out a lot. In this context, he is number one on the team and everyone plays for him and that player does not defend and that player scores goals. The context of the selection is very different, very different. Here you don’t play for one, here you play with everyone for everyone”, warned Luis Enrique. For the coach, the team should not have the strikers who score the most goals. The main thing is that they adjust to the style and what is demanded of them. In this sense, there is no case more significant than that of Iago Aspas. He does not go below 15 goals per season and his football fits in with Luis Enrique’s idea. In case the problem was defending or pressing, his efforts at Celta have been titanic for a long time. Probably, he lost the national team train in the eyes of the coach in the calls in which he had him and he did not give him what he expected. The same happens with Fabian Ruiz, absent from the European Championship.

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    Luis Enrique has a block in his head that will not differ much from the one he announces on November 10 or 11 to go to Qatar. Meanwhile, the internationals listen with state-of-the-art technology to the script that they know they cannot get out of through those mini speakers that are added to the giant screens that he places in the training field.

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    Source: EL PAIS

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