Spain to play three friendlies before World Cup

Spain will play three international friendlies in the weeks before the World Cup in South Africa next year and will be based near Johannesburg during the tournament, the nation’s football federation said on Tuesday.

Published: Fri 25 Dec 2009, 4:41 PM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 8:28 AM

The European champions will play two friendlies at home, on May 29 and June 8, and one away on June 5. The squad’s opponents for the matches have not yet been determined.

The Spanish national team will be based in Potchefstroom, a university town about 120 kilometres (75 miles) southwest of Johannesburg during the June 11-July 11 World Cup. They will arrive in South Africa on June 10.

Spain, one of the favourites to win the tournament, are in Group H alongside Chile, Honduras and Switzerland.

They are ranked number one in the year-end FIFA standings for the second straight year, making them the only side to ever occupy the top spot in the rankings without winning a World Cup.

Often accused of underperforming at an international level, their best placing remains fourth in 1950.

Spain would only appear in two more World Cups until 1978, but have qualified for every tournament since then.

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