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Spanish midfielder Thiago Alcantara takes aim at press

By Paul Giblin MOSCOW Russia (Xinhua) -- Spain midfielder Thiago Alcantara criticized the Spanish press for not giving the team the support it needs at the current World Cup finals.

Although Spain finished top of Group B with five points, they only managed a narrow 1-0 win against Iran while drawing with Portugal and Morocco in performances which were criticized in the Spanish media; something Thiago wasn’t happy with in his press conference on Friday.

“As Spaniards, you should show some self-criticism,” he said to the journalists present, adding “we have all come here to win, we are all a long way from home and we all want to win the World Cup. We haven’t played our best football, but it is harder if you don’t help to get public opinion behind us,” Thiago said.

He continued to say that the press “is looking for the bad things” and that “it makes it harder for the team.” Thiago admitted Spain’s performances have so far been below par as they prepare to face Russia in the Luzhniki Stadium.

The Bayern Munich midfielder went on to say that although the team hasn’t played its best football, they still managed to top the group. When asked what Spain needed to improve, he said they had to start with confidence. “We have to have confidence in ourselves and our companions,” Thiago said. He admitted the sacking of coach Julen Lopetegui on the eve of the tournament had been a setback.

“It hurt us in that we had been preparing things in a certain way, but we were fortunate that (Fernando) Hierro has taken up a role that he wasn’t expecting and he helps give us confidence in our games,” he concluded.

             

 

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