The young Spanish team led by Luis Enrique has a bright future, but Michel Salgado says they must change after a shocking World Cup exit.
La Roja, one of the favorites for the tournament, was shocked on penalties after a goalless draw with Morocco on Tuesday in the last-16.
After an unexpected loss to the Samurai Blue, they finished second in their group behind Japan, and for several senior players, it probably means the end of the road.
However, with one of the younger teams at Qatar 2022, led by stars like Gavi, Pedri, and Ansu Fati, former Real Madrid and Spain defender Salgado thinks the national team’s prospects are still promising.
“If we want to win again, we have to make a clean slate, and we have to start working with the new,” he told Stats Perform. “I think it’s a team that can give much more in the next World Cup.
“It is a team with a lot of talent, there is no doubt about that. I believe that what we cannot be right now is fatalists. On the contrary, I think we have to be positive.
“We are not going to change our identity. Spain is a country that is measured by the football of possession and control of the game. What we do have [to do is] adapt to modern times.
“I think it’s time to analyse how we can be more effective with what we have and look for that group that can be back to win the World Cup.”
Salgado acknowledged the disappointment of Spain’s humiliating exit, but he believes it is unfair to contrast their accomplishments with those of the team that dominated world football more than ten years ago.
“Obviously, for the fans, it is a disappointment,” he added. “I have to see it from a different angle. I think it is a young team, a team at a time of total change.
“The pressure, I think that’s the first thing we have to erase. We have to make a clean slate and start getting the best out of the players we have now.”