Chelsea and Spain playmaker Juan Mata has backed England to go the distance at the World Cup in Brazil next summer, Sky
Mata made one appearance for Spain as they claimed the 2010 World Cup and also featured in the 2012 European Championship victory, Spain’s second successive triumph in the tournament. He believes that Hodgson’s ability to call on players who regularly appear in the latter stages of the Champions League means the Three Lions are contenders in 2014.
“The England team is really very good as they have a lot of players in the best teams in England and Europe,” he said at a Laureus Foundation event. “For me they will always be a candidate to win any of the major of the major tournaments that they are in.”
Having been part of the Spain squad that won consecutive European Championships, Mata is now dreaming of a second straight World Cup. “It is a great challenge and we all want to continue to writing history,” he added. “Truly, it would be a dream to play in and win the World Cup in Brazil, a country that loves the game.”
Mata made his senior Spain debut in 2009, playing in a 1-0 World Cup qualification win over Turkey in Madrid. Later that summer he was part of the Confederations Cup squad and claimed his first international goal in a 3-0 win over Estonia that booked Spain’s place at the 2010 World Cup. His only World Cup appearance came as a substitute for Fernando Torres against Honduras in the group stage.
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