Torres: Spain yearns to add Confederations Cup to past international triumphs

The Chelsea striker said that this generation of Spanish players is still hungry for more success and also recalled Spain's stunning loss to the USA in the 2009 competition.
Those counting on Spain to take the 2013 FIFA Confederations Cup lightly just because it is less prestigious than the international trophies the world's top-ranked team has already won in the recent past may want to rethink things.

Chelsea striker Fernando Torres says Spain is putting plenty of emphasis on emerging from this month's tournament in Brazil with a trophy, adding that this generation of La Furia Roja players is still hungry for more success.

"For this generation of players, it would be massive to win the European Cup, World Cup and Confederations Cup all in a row," Torres said on a conference call with reporters Friday. "The approach of this competition has to be like a World Cup or a European Cup. This generation, we still want to win trophies."

In 2009, Spain bowed out of the Confederations Cup in the semifinals, when the United States upset the heavy favorite with a 2-0 result in South Africa.

"2009 was a big, big disappointment for us to lose in the semifinal against the USA," Torres said. "Because of that we know how important this competition is. It's the only competition we didnt win in the past.

"We don't want to have the same feelings from 2009 and going back home and losing in the semifinals. Especially because we play in Brazil and we know how important it is for Brazil as well to win the Confederations Cup and show the supporters that they can beat Spain. We are the team to beat, and we can handle the pressure and we're ready for the chance."

Torres recalled the loss to the Americans, one that snapped Spain's 35-match unbeaten streak and sent shockwaves around the world but also showed the likes of Torres that U.S. players were on the rise.

"We played against a great team," Torres said. "I think we had over 40 shots that game and we could not score. It was not the best memory, but I remember players like [Clint] Dempsey, [Landon] Donovan, [Jozy] Altidore, who scored the first goal, [Tim] Howard in the goal, [Oguchi] Onyewu as a center back, he had a great game. Many players played in Europe and for America, that day they had a great game.

"It's not a surprise for everyone that the USA is winning games against the best teams in the world. There are players that can play in the best teams in the world, and in a few years we will see many American players playing in Europe in the top teams.

"I think they showed to everyone in 2009 what they can do in the future. We're ready for the next time we're going to play against them."

Torres said that even though Spain lost in 2009, the experience of being able to play in South Africa and get acclimated to the surroundings was a major factor in the team's 2010 World Cup success.

"The Confederations Cup, it's a great opportunity to know the country for the World Cup, the kind of grass it has in the stadiums, everything it looks like it's not important, but I think for us to play in South Africa, it helps a lot for the World Cup the year after," Torres said. "You know more or less what are you going to find in the country. We hope the Confederations Cup in Brazil is going to give us a good contact for the country, the stadiums, everything in Brazil to be ready for the World Cup."

Prior to departing for Brazil, Spain will play two friendlies in the United States starting with Saturday's clash with Haiti at Miami's Sun Life Stadium. La Roja will then take on Ireland at New York's Yankee Stadium on Tuesday.

For Torres, it marks the second of his three slated summer trips to the United States. Chelsea already played against Manchester City in St. Louis and New York and will be returning later this summer for the International Champions Cup, a tournament featuring eight teams.

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