Spanish football chief hails national team coach, urges patience

Spanish football federation (RFEF) president Luis Rubiales praised Spain head coach Luis Enrique on Tuesday but also called for patience, saying the new coach was still developing his squad.

Rubiales stressed that he was pleased with Spain's 2-1 away win over England on Saturday in the UEFA Nations League opener, and was looking for a good result in Tuesday's clash with Croatia, reports Efe news.

"Luis Enrique is a great coach. He is forming his team and we have to give him time, since he has very good players, but he is starting a new era," Rubiales said.

Former Barcelona coach Enrique took the helm after ex-coach Julen Lopetegui was fired one day before the start of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, where Spain fared poorly under interim coach Fernando Hierro.

The RFEF president made his remarks after visiting a school here, where Spain is set to face Croatia, the 2018 FIFA World Cup runner-up.

Rubiales said he expects an exciting game, since the sold-out stadium is going to be filled with fans, but warned that "anything can happen" against such a tough opponent.

--IANS

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