Spain players 'drained' ahead of semi-final, admits Del Bosque

La Roja coach thinks that a combination of semi-final appearances at three consecutive tournaments and the summer heat in Poland and Ukraine are taking their toll on his squad

Spain manager Vicente del Bosque has stated that some of his players are “drained” following their run to the Euro 2012 semi-finals.

The admission comes on the same day as one of La Roja physios lamenting the extra two days of rest afforded to, their opponents on Wednesday, Portugal.

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A schedule of four games in 13 days appears to have taken its toll on the Spain squad, and Del Bosque says he will definitely factor fatigue into his starting line-up selection.

"We have two fewer days to rest than them. It is a small handicap," the 61 year-old told reporters.

"I am thinking about this problem. We have arrived very drained because the heat we suffered tonight was cruel on the players."

Despite Spain being criticised in some quarters for not fully emulating their usual impressive 'tika-taka' style, Del Bosque says playing in a more defensive way will serve his team well in their attempt to become the first team to win three major competitions on the trot.

"The truth is we did well and controlled the game," said Del Bosque. "[Goalkeeper] Iker Casillas hardly had anything to do and that speaks of the good defensive performance of the team," he said.

"If our defenders are good then we will be closer to winning the tournament because we will always create a chance."

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