Fernando Torres has spoken of his delight to be back in the Spain fold and is determined to make the most of his opportunity with World Cup spots up for grabs.
A combination of injury and disappointing form for Chelsea had seen Torres lose his place in the Spain set-up over the last year, but the striker earned a recall to the provisional 30-man squad for Brazil 2014 that coach Vicente del Bosque named earlier this month.
Torres was also one of the players retained by Del Bosque on Sunday for their upcoming friendly with Bolivia, giving the 30-year-old a chance to further press his claims for a spot on the plane to Brazil.
The former Atletico Madrid and Liverpool striker, who scored in the finals of both EURO 2008 and EURO 2012, told the Spanish press, as posted on FIFA website, on Monday: “It’s very nice to be back with the national team. I’ve gone a year without being with La Roja, since the Confederations Cup.
“I knew that anything could happen. Yesterday (Sunday), I was only hoping to hear my name. I knew that I could’ve been here or not, but now I have a better chance of being in Brazil.
“It’s been a difficult year but I finished the season very well. I’m grateful for the words of Vicente, who has valued my performances in the final phases. Now to fight during these days to be in the final list for Brazil.”
While Torres was included in Del Bosque’s 19-man squad for the game against Bolivia, three of his main rivals for a striking berth were left out, with Alvaro Negredo and Fernando Llorente omitted along with the injured Diego Costa. Del Bosque was quick to point out that the World Cup door is not closed to any player, but Torres knows that he now has a great chance this week to steal a march on his rivals.
“This list is for the game against Bolivia,” said Torres. “We need to take advantage this week, enjoy it and hopefully we can be in the final list. It is a big step to be here but in football, until things are done and dusted, anything can happen.