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Mendieta supports Lopetegui over Morata snub

Gaizka Mendieta approves of Julen Lopetegui's decision to leave Alvaro Morata out of Spain's World Cup squad, believing it is more important to have options in other positions.

Lopetegui has included only two traditional centre forwards, Diego Costa and Rodrigo, in his 23-man group for the tournament, with Chelsea's Morata omitted after a mixed first season in the Premier League.

And while Spain now have few alternatives in attack, Mendieta trusts that this decision has been made to include players in other positions who are "some of the best in the world".

Speaking courtesy of Nissan, official Champions League partner, the former Valencia man said: "If you look at the positions, I think we have some of the best players in the world.

"So I am not worried about how many strikers we have, because we have many players that can play everywhere on the pitch. I think that makes it easy to understand Lopetegui's decision.

"They will have injuries, banned players throughout the World Cup, things you have to count on, so I think Lopetegui has readied plans A, B and C. That's the most important."

Spain won three major tournaments in succession between 2008 and 2012, before crashing out in the group stage of the last World Cup and reaching only the last 16 at Euro 2016.

Lopetegui's men kick off their campaign in Russia against European champions Portugal in Group B.