Del Bosque's men on cusp of something special and rare...
Widely perceived to be the best team of the current generation, La Furia Roja won the European Championships two years ago in Austria and now have the chance to complete the set when they take on the Netherlands in Johannesburg on Sunday.
Goal.com UK looks at the teams who grabbed the doubles and those who couldn't repeat the feat.
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THE ROLE MODELS
Euro '72 & World Cup '74
The Germans were the first team to add the World Cup to the European Championships when they won on home soil in 1974. They had previously breezed to the 1972 Euro final thanks to the goals of Gerd Mueller, and that man again fired them to World Cup success two years later in a team build in Munich, the same place they lifted the trophy.
World Cup '98 & Euro 2000
The 'Goldern Generation' of French football came to life at the end of the last decade, cleaning up on both the European and world stage. The 10 years of grass roots remodelling in France produced a team full of confidence and ability and - most notably - Zinedine Zidane, whose display in Euro 2000 is widely regarded as one of the best individual performances in a tournament ever.
World Cup 2002 & Copa America 2004
The Brazilians became the first team to add the Copa America to the World Cup when they lifted the trophy in 2004, defeating Argentina on penalties. Led by the unflattering but brilliant Ronaldo and with the mercurial Ronaldinho at his peak, the Selecao had the right blend of ability and teamwork under the watchful eyes of 'Big Phil' Scolari.
THE NOTABLE FAILURES
World Cup 2002
Potentially one of the worst failures on the big stage, the French team sulked and shrugged their way out of the World Cup 2002 in Japan and Korea, just two years after winning the Euros. A combination of egos, expectations and ageing stars was too much for Roger Lemerre's team, who came bottom of their group, failing to even score a goal. Sacre bleu!
The Azzurri didn't even make it to the finals of Euro 84, finishing second bottom of their qualifying group two years after they had stumbled to the final of the World Cup winning against, you guessed it, West Germany. An ageing Italy - goalkeeper Dino Zoff was 40 when they lifted the trophy - were simply past their best and many retired by the time they tried to complete the double.
Copa America 1979
The Argentinians dominated the Copa America in the first half of the century but the World Cup win of 1978 was not followed up with a Copa America victory despite getting to 22 out of 27 finals between 1921 and 1967, winning 12. Even the presence of the young Diego Maradona couldn't inspire an erratic Albiceleste, who underestimated the unfancied Bolivia and paid the price.
A bit unfair to include Germany in a list of failures but Die Mannschaft have been so successful on the world stage, it's actually quite a surprise to discover they have only done the double once. They suffered a very un-German defeat on penalties in the 1976 final to Czechoslovakia thanks to Uli Hoeness smashing it high over the bar. One moment of madness from the usually cool Germans cost them a record third successive title.
World Cup 2006
Having surprised Europe by winning Euro 2004, it seemed the Greeks' day in the sun had ended by the time World Cup 2006 rolled around, with Otto Rehhagel's side failing to even qualify, finishing fourth in their group. The general consensus was that the Greeks got lucky in 2004, in what was largely a poor pool of teams. At least we got to see Cristiano Roanldo cry, though.
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