Del Bosque: Xavi will play against France if he says he is fit

The 62-year-old is hopeful that the midfielder can feature on Tuesday, and says the midfielder will be allowed to decide his own fate
Spain boss Vicente del Bosque has made it clear that Xavi will have the final say on whether or not he starts in Tuesday's 2014 World Cup qualifier against France following a hamstring injury.

The Barcelona midfielder missed last Friday's 1-1 draw against Finland with the problem, but the reigning European and world champions are hopeful that he will make his comeback in the crucial Group I encounter.

"Xavi knows his own physical condition better than anyone. If he says he is fit to play, then he'll play," Del Bosque said at a press conference.

"He's one of those midfielders who does everything well."

The 62-year-old then responded to Didier Deschamps' claims that Franck Ribery can make the difference on Tuesday, and insisted that Alvaro Arbeloa has what it takes to contain the Bayern winger, while praising the defensive partnership of Sergio Ramos and Gerard Pique.

"Arbeloa has always marked Ribery very well, and I'm not just saying that to give him confidence. We have no reason to make a change in his position," he explained.

"Ramos and Pique are one of the best defensive partnerships in Europe."

Spain are currently trailing France by two points in Group I.