Soccer-Luis Enrique not worried about Spain's chances despite Poland draw


Soccer Football - Euro 2020 - Group E - Spain v Poland - La Cartuja Stadium, Seville, Spain - June 19, 2021 Spain coach Luis Enrique Pool via REUTERS/Marcelo Del Pozo

SEVILLE, Spain (Reuters) - Spain coach Luis Enrique said he is not worried about his side's chances of reaching the knockout stages of Euro 2020 following a 1-1 draw with Poland on Saturday, and backed the team to get the job done with a win over Slovakia in their final Group E game.

Alvaro Morata put Spain ahead in the 25th minute but Poland equalised through Robert Lewandowski. Luis Enrique's side were awarded a penalty soon after but Gerard Moreno hit the post.

It was another frustrating night for Spain, who drew their opener against Sweden 0-0, but Luis Enrique said he would only take the positives into Wednesday's clash with Slovakia.

"I feel a lot of hope heading into that game," Luis Enrique told reporters. "We obviously wanted to play better and give our fans something to cheer about... It was a tough game against a good opponent.

"You have to recognise how good Poland were and the great defensive work they did. They closed down a lot of the avenues we usually use to get forward, stopped our transitions and pressed high up the pitch all game.

"... The third game will be crucial, we need to win it if we want to get through to the next round. All four teams in this group have their future in their own hands."

Luis Enrique acknowledged that Spain often struggle against defensive teams.

"Anyone that watches football can see that attacking against a team camped in their own penalty box is the hardest thing to do," the 51-year-old said.

"I don't think it was that kind of game (against Poland). There were moments where they held back, but they looked to press us whenever we had the ball.

"Of course it's something we struggle with. But it's something France struggle with, Barcelona, Brazil, Manchester City, Real Madrid... any team that hangs back in numbers is going to cause problems to any team looking to attack."

(Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru)

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