PFor a person who loves sports and who has not minded minimizing their sleep hours to follow each edition of the Olympic Games, participate in the appointment of Tokyo it’s going to be a dream. TO Luis de la Fuente (Haro, 1961) the smile escapes him when he thinks that he is going to experience an event in which the Usain Bolt, Carl Lewis, Ben Jhonson or the spanish Fermín Cacho, José Luis González or Abascal. At the head of the Olympic football team, he hopes to achieve the same success as the Spanish midfield in Barcelona 92. Illusion is not lacking.
- Did you imagine participating in a Games?
- Never. This is once in a lifetime. For me, who value the Olympics so much and I am one of those who stayed at dawn to watch all the sports, it is a dream come true. I have an extraordinary enthusiasm and motivation.
- How was the concentration in Benidorm?
- We are happy because we are meeting the objectives set. The first thing was to adapt the loads to the possibilities of each player, something individualized, and then make a group in order to when we are all together so that that level of loads is balanced.
- They have adjusted the schedules and looked for conditions similar to those of Japan.
- What we can control we try to control, but there are so many aspects that are uncontrollable, that change from one day to the next, that we have to adapt. We try to adapt to those schedules and get closer to what we will find in Japan. That jet lag is not such a big deal. We are approaching the tremendous conditions there.
- Was the list the most difficult for all the conditions that were found?
- Undoubtedly. It was tremendous. We have been with this list for over two years. We made a somewhat general list, then we had to reduce the number of players, then a pre-list, then a pre-list of the pre-list … And finally, when there were 5-6 months left and you see that you can close the group and give it form, setbacks begin to occur from players who cannot come when six months ago they could. Much difficulty and then the circumstance that there was an absolute Eurocup and we had to wait because some players were going to be involved in the two events. We have built a list of players with a very high level and it makes us optimistic.
I spoke with all the players and they conveyed their wish to be here. “
- Have the squares for the elderly given a lot?
- It was very clear to me, I knew which players I had to shoot for, it was a bit the base of the European and players of that generation who have been with us that I know very well and they know me. There are players who have not been able to come from the European plus Marco and Rodri, who I consider to be from this group.
- He always says that these tournaments change the lives of the players.
- We try to play with that aspect. Psychology, confidence, and need move mountains. When you are in need, you can confidently and confidently do more than you would if you were well off. Half the world will see us, it is an opportunity that I value very much for them and they will not fail.
- You had problems with foreign clubs, and with the Spanish?
- I spoke with the players and they all conveyed to me their desire to be with an illusion out of the ordinary. No one has addressed me, I have read comments from a club about players, but no one from the Federation has told me anything. What is understandable is that my responsibility is to select the best players that I consider because the prestige of a country is at stake. We represent Spain and it is enough argument to understand that the best have to be here.
My responsibility is to select the best players “
- There is a lot of talk about the clubs, but some player wanted to do the European Under 21, the European Championship and the Games.
- By illusion for sure. Everything would be to see the participation they had in each one of them. It is not the same to participate in the entire competition every minute than to play a match or play 50 minutes and have enough days to recover. We are very clear that the health of any footballer is not going to be put at risk, but not now or ever. In the Federation we have been especially sensitive to these situations, whoever it is. We do not look at the names, the first thing is the footballer’s health. We continue in that dynamic and we will continue to act like this. There are so many good footballers that it will allow us to rotate and give the necessary times without being stressful for the footballers. I am calm, the first thing we are going to look at is the health and good health of the footballer. It is what interests us.
- He has always said that good footballers do not have vacations.
- They will have the times that allow them to compete at the highest level in terms of their physical condition, we will not do crazy things. Great footballers have events in the summer. They have commitments because they are very good. Our responsibility is to dose them for their good and that of the team.
- He has Marco Asensio again.
- I think that in addition to the footballing capacity that the whole group has, which is unquestionable, and that they are a group of friends, then that assessment that can be made of the characteristics of each one, I think there is a psychological aspect that we must assess and it is very important to me. It is the fact of thinking that for many players the Games are their opportunity to claim themselves in the world and show how great footballers they are worldwide. It is something that has given me a lot of confidence when it comes to betting on everyone because I know that for them it is a unique showcase and a way to vindicate themselves in their club by saying here I am. That they show the potential they have because it is the best way they have to transfer the weight they have in the selection to their clubs and end up being important.
- He always says that these types of tournaments change the lives of the players. This time it is met again with the Asensio, Ceballos, Vallejo and company.
- We have tried to play with that aspect. Psychology, trust and need move mountains and when one is in need with confidence and security, one is capable of doing many more things than they would in another time being well off. Here they will be more demanded, it is a competition without comparison, 16 teams in the Olympic Games, it is almost a world championship under 24. Half the world is going to see us, it is an opportunity that I value a lot for them and I know that they will not fail.