In his first game as Spain’s head coach, Luis de la Fuente will oversee La Roja’s inaugural Euro 2024 qualification game against Norway on Saturday night.
Spain’s national football team is currently transforming their new head coach, De la Fuente. La Roja is entering a new era following Luis Enrique’s departure after the disappointing 2022 World Cup.
Since their World Cup triumph in 2010, the national side has struggled to make an impact at the tournament. Despite being considered a dark horse for the World Cup, Spain suffered a defeat on penalties in the round of 16 against Morocco, following their semi-final finish at Euro 2020.
Although it would be surprising if La Roja did not top their current section, it’s challenging to predict how they will perform since De la Fuente has made significant changes to the squad.
Spain Form (All Competitions): W W D L L
Norway’s national football team has had a difficult time recently, failing to qualify for the 2022 World Cup and missing out on the European Championship finals since 2000. Head coach Stale Solbakken has taken on this daunting task.
In their last outing, towards the end of 2022, Norway played two friendlies against the Republic of Ireland and Finland, winning 2-1 against the former and drawing 1-1 with the latter.
The Lions will aim for a top-two finish in their section, with key players Martin Odegaard and Erling Braut Haaland expected to inspire.
Despite not being present at the World Cup since 1998, Norway’s team will be eager to prove themselves in this competition. The road ahead won’t be easy, but with Solbakken at the helm and Odegaard leading, they will aim to turn their fortunes around.
Norway Form (All Competitions): W L L W D
Spain’s new head coach, De la Fuente, has made significant changes to the squad, with only 11 2022 World Cup team members remaining in the current selection. Fifteen new faces have been introduced, resulting in a much-changed outfit from the Qatar competition.
Norway’s national team has been dealt a blow as Erling Braut Haaland has been forced to withdraw from the squad due to a groin injury.
Haaland suffered the injury during Manchester City’s 6-0 victory over Burnley in the FA Cup.
Spain’s expected starting lineup:
Raya; Carvajal, Laporte, I Martinez, Balde; Gavi, Rodri, Ceballos; Oyarzabal, Morata, Olmo
Norway’s expected starting lineup:
Nyland; Pedersen, Strandberg, Ostigard, Meling; Odegaard, Berg, Berge; Daehli, Sorloth, Elyounoussi
Head to Head
Spain and Norway have faced each other five times in international football, with Spain winning three matches, Norway winning one, and one ending in a draw.
Time, Date & Venue
Date: Saturday, March 25
Time: 07:45 pm, GMT
Venue: Estadio La Roselada, Malaga
Indeed, the match between Spain and Norway has the potential to be a challenging one for Spain, as Norway boasts a talented squad. However, with Haaland’s absence, Spain may have a slight advantage.