Negredo sets sights on Spain starting berth

Manchester City striker Alvaro Negredo has set his sights on securing a starting berth at the FIFA World Cup for defending champions Spain.

The 28-year-old is enjoying a prolific campaign for both club and country, with 26 goals in 38 appearances.

And the former Sevilla man, who has 10 goals from his 21 international caps, is hopeful of getting the nod to lead the line for Vicente del Bosque's men in Brazil.

"It would be fantastic to be the centre-forward for Spain in the World Cup," he said in quotes reported by The Manchester Evening News. "But there is a tremendous competition.

"You can only do your thing, play well, score goals and hope that the coach has an eye on you."

Negredo's transition from La Liga to the Premier League has been seamless, with the forward carrying on from where he left off in Spain, having scored 25 league goals in his final campaign at Sevilla.

"I have adapted very well to England, both on and off the pitch," he said. "Yes, the weather is not like Sevilla, it rains a lot. This winter has been awful, but life is quiet and the people are very respectful."

The Spaniard is well placed to make a judgement on the relative merits of the English and Spanish top-flight divisions, and he is confident he is now playing in the superior league.

"At this point in time the Premier (League) is stronger than La Liga," he added. "The football here is much better organised, and the finances much sounder.

"It is harder to beat West Brom or Sunderland than a Spanish side from mid table. The gap between Barcelona, Real, Atletico and the others has become too big.

"Here all the teams are dangerous - especially at home. The pace and the energy are incredible.

"They have big centre-forwards that can hurt you.

"The stadiums are full and the crowds are very passionate."