Spain vs. Italy: Victory Will Propel La Furia Roja to 2014 World Cup Crown

Ian Hanford@Ian_HanfordFeatured ColumnistJuly 3, 2012

MADRID, SPAIN - JULY 02:  Spain's Sergio Ramos (C) celebrates with teammates on an during their victory parade in Cibeles square on July 2, 2012 in Madrid, Spain. Spain beat Italy 4-0 in the UEFA EURO 2012 final match in Kiev, Ukraine July 1, 2012.  (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)
Denis Doyle/Getty Images

In case you haven't noticed, the Spanish national team is pretty good. With their victory over Italy in the Euro 2012 final, Spain has now won three major tournaments in a row. The 2014 World Cup is their next chance to add to that mark—and they will.

La Furia Roja has everything going for them: youth, experience, talent and momentum all speak greatly in their favor. None of these things are going to end anytime soon.

They are already one of, if not, the greatest international teams the world has ever seen. A victory in the World Cup would solidify their status as the greatest team in world football history.

Let's take a look at their chances in 2014 and why they will claim the crown.



The only players who will be considered "old" by the time this World Cup rolls around are Xavi, Xabi Alonso and Iker Casillas. All are vital parts of the Spanish side, but they will still be competent enough to hold their own.

Defensively, Spain is young. None of their current defenders will be older than 30 and La Liga has several young prospects waiting in the wings. By the time 2014 rolls around the Spanish defenders will be on the back end of their prime, but will be extremely experienced. 

Even Spain's youngest players will have a taste of victory on a major stage. Their youth will not be a detriment to their ability. Instead, it will provide an edge in maturity, experience and confidence. 

KIEV, UKRAINE - JULY 01: Xabi Alonso of Spain with the trophy after the UEFA EURO 2012 final match between Spain and Italy at the Olympic Stadium on July 1, 2012 in Kiev, Ukraine.  (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)
Michael Steele/Getty Images



Their momentum is obvious, but the World Cup will be different. They didn't have to deal with Brazil or Argentina in their Euro Cup victories and they will be on their turf in 2014.

In World Cup history, no European team has ever come away with the crown on South American soil. Brazil and Argentina will have the momentum in that sense, but it's different. In fact, it could work against the two non-European squads.

The last thing people need to do is quote history when they say why Spain won't do the unthinkable. This team is tough enough to play as it is. 

No one wants to see this team with even the slightest chip on their shoulder, but I suspect that they will enter World Cup competition with that feeling. Non-Spanish fans will be pulling for any side other than La Furia Roja and Spanish faithful will have history on the brain. 

World Cup lore says to think otherwise, but Spain has momentum where it matters. Their presence on the field is unmatched. 

It doesn't matter where they play.



You can talk about anything else you want, but talent is what matters on the pitch. Great players in top form will trump everything and Spain has more than their fair share on all three levels of the field. 

Spain's current squad is stacked.

David Silva, Cesc Fabregas and Fernando Torres are all dangerous scorers. Sergio Ramos and Gerard Pique are consistent central defenders and their aging central midfield is incredibly steady.

In 2014, young guns like Isco and Thiago Alcantara should be ready to contribute and other elite prospects could also be in the mix. Spain is a hotbed of football talent and you can bet that isn't going to dry up anytime soon.

I'm not saying Spain is infallible. Even the greatest teams have to lose at some point, but this is special.

Football fans will remember this group for the rest of their lives. Their victory in the 2014 World Cup will hammer that fact home.