Spain are 7/1 to win Euro 2020 after manager Luiz Enrique picked a squad featuring not a single Real Madrid player – including former-captain Sergio Ramos.
In terms of pre-tournament shocks, it’s not quite up there with the Spanish FA’s decision to sack their manager on the eve of World Cup 2018, but it is still remarkable that the team will go into this summer’s tournament without a player from Los Blancos – the Spanish club with the record number of European Cup/Champions League titles.
Spain are 1.341/3 to win Group E where they are drawn alongside Poland, Sweden and Slovakia.
End of the road for Ramos?
Ramos has been struggling with injury and has only played one game for Madrid since the end of March. That came in the club’s Champions League semi-final second-leg defeat by Chelsea on 5 May. He last played for Spain in World Cup qualifiers in March.
His omission is still a surprise because, along with his impact on the pitch, where he scores goals as well as defending, Ramos was expected to be an influential presence in the dressing room.
He is Spain’s most capped player with 180 caps and has captained them since 2016. But, at 35, there must be doubts about him ever pulling on the famous Roja shirt again.
Ramos was not the only high profile omission from the squad. Iago Aspas, Sergio Canales, Nacho Fernandez, Marco Asensio, Jesus Navas, Kepa Arrizabalaga and Mikel Merino all missed out.
Manchester City defender Aymeric Laporte, who had his switch from France to Spain approved by Fifa recently, makes the squad.
Enrique, who managed Barcelona to Champions League glory in 2015, has shown that he’s unafraid to make big calls. Now he just needs to make sure they pay off otherwise the Madrid-based media will crucify him for leaving out one of the most iconic Spanish players.
Spain squad in full
Goalkeepers: Unai Simon, David de Gea, Robert Sanchez
Defenders: Jose Gaya, Jordi Alba, Pau Torres, Aymeric Laporte, Eric Garcia, Diego Llorente, Cesar Azpilicueta
Midfielders: Sergio Busquets, Rodri, Pedri, Thiago Alcantara, Koke, Fabian Ruiz, Marcos Llorente
Forwards: Dani Olmo, Mikel Oyarzabal, Alvaro Morata, Gerard Moreno, Ferran Torres, Adama Traore, Pablo Sarabia