Spain national under-21 football team

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Spain Under-21
Shirt badge/Association crest
Nickname(s) La Rojita (The Little Red [One])
Association Royal Spanish Football Federation
Confederation UEFA (Europe)
Head coach Albert Celades (2014–)
Most caps Iker Muniain (31)
Top scorer Rodrigo (15)
FIFA code ESP
First colours
Second colours
Third colours
First international
 Yugoslavia 4–1 Spain 
(Zagreb, Yugoslavia; 9 October 1976)
Biggest win
 Spain 14–0 San Marino 
(El Ejido, Spain; 8 February 2005)
Biggest defeat

 Netherlands 5–0 Spain 
(Utrecht, Netherlands; 16 February 1983)

Records for competitive matches only.
UEFA U-21 Championship
Appearances 12 (First in 1982)
Best result Winners (1986, 1998, 2011, 2013)
The 2011 winning team

The Spain national under-21 football team is the national under-21 football team of Spain and is controlled by the Royal Spanish Football Federation. The team, nicknamed La Rojita (The Little Red [One]),[1] competes in the biannual UEFA European Under-21 Championship.

Following the realignment of UEFA's youth competitions in 1976, the Spanish under-21 team was formed. Spain has a fantastic record (competition winners four times and runners-up twice); having consecutively won the 2011 and 2013 Championships. Only Italy with five titles has won the competition more often than Spain.

Since the under-21 competition rules insist that players must be 21 or under at the start of a two-year competition, technically it is an U-23 competition. For this reason, Spain's brief record in the preceding U-23 competitions is also shown, though in actuality, Spain played only three competitive U-23 matches. The first was in the "under-23 Challenge", which they lost, while the next two were in a two-team qualification "group" for the 1972 competition (facing the Soviet Union team, they lost 2–1 at home then drew 1–1 away and failed to qualify. Spain did not enter a team in the other two U-23 competitions, but have been ever present in under-21 competitions).

Spain's youth development programs has been challenging the South American dominance in the FIFA U-17 World Championship and the FIFA U-20 World Cup. In fact, 20 of the Spanish 23-man squad that won the Euro 2008 came through the ranks of the youth teams; most of them had won titles at the youth level as well.

Competitive record[edit]

UEFA European Under-21 Championship record[edit]

Year Round GP W D* L GS GA
Europe1978 Qualifying Stage 4 2 0 2 5 8
Europe1980 Qualifying Stage 4 1 2 1 4 2
Europe1982 Quarter-Finals 6 5 0 1 14 5
Europe1984 Runners-up 10 5 2 3 11 11
Europe1986 Champions 10 7 1 2 18 9
Europe1988 Quarter-Finals 8 4 2 2 10 4
Europe1990 Quarter-Finals 6 4 0 2 5 4
Europe1992 Qualifying Stage 7 3 2 2 6 5
France 1994 Third Place 12 9 2 1 21 9
Spain 1996 Runners-up 14 10 3 1 34 14
Romania 1998 Champions 11 10 1 0 21 6
Slovakia 2000 Third Place 14 11 3 0 31 7
Switzerland 2002 Qualification Playoffs 10 6 1 3 15 9
Germany 2004 Qualification Playoffs 10 6 2 2 17 5
Portugal 2006 Qualifying Stage 10 6 2 2 37 8
Netherlands 2007 Qualification Playoffs 4 2 1 1 8 4
Sweden 2009 Group Stage 13 10 1 2 27 7
Denmark 2011 Champions 15 12 2 1 31 8
Israel 2013 Champions 15 14 1 0 47 5
Czech Republic 2015 Qualification Playoffs 10 7 2 1 25 8
Bulgaria 2017 Qualifying in progress
Total 12/20 193 134 30 29 387 138

*Denotes draws include knockout matches decided on penalty kicks.

  • Gold background color indicates first-place finish. Silver background color indicates second-place finish. Bronze background color indicates third-place finish.
  • Red border color indicates tournament was held on home soil.

Individual awards[edit]

In addition to team victories, Spanish players have won individual awards at UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship.

Year Golden Player
European Union 1986 Manolo Sanchís
Romania 1998 Francesc Arnau
Denmark 2011 Juan Mata
Israel 2013 Thiago

Player records[edit]

Top appearances[edit]

Rank Player Club(s) Year(s) U-21 Caps
1 Iker Muniain Athletic Bilbao 2011–2014 31
2 David de Gea Atlético Madrid, Manchester United 2009–2013 27
2 Santiago Denia Albacete, Atlético Madrid 1992–1996 27
4 Diego Capel Sevilla 2007–2011 25
4 Xavi Barcelona 1998–2001 25
6 Gerard Deulofeu Barcelona, Everton, Sevilla 2012– 24
6 Óscar García Barcelona, Albacete 1992–1996 24
6 Javi Martínez Athletic Bilbao 2007–2011 24
9 Martín Montoya Barcelona 2010–2013 22
9 Pablo Sarabia Getafe 2011–2014 22

Note: Club(s) represents the permanent clubs during the player's time in the Under-21s.

Top goalscorers[edit]

Rank Player Club(s) Year(s) U-21 Goals
1 Rodrigo Benfica 2011–2013 15
2 Gerard Deulofeu Barcelona, Everton, Sevilla 2012– 13
2 Álvaro Morata Real Madrid, Juventus 2013–2014 13
4 Óscar García Barcelona, Albacete 1992–1996 12
5 Isco Málaga, Real Madrid 2011–2014 10
6 Pablo Couñago Recreativo, Celta, Ipswich Town 1999–2001 9
6 Adrián Deportivo La Coruña, Málaga 2007–2011 9
8 Julen Guerrero Athletic Bilbao 1992–1994 8
8 Raúl Real Madrid 1995–1996 8
8 Jonathan Soriano Espanyol 2005 8

Note: Club(s) represents the permanent clubs during the player's time in the Under-21s.

  • Caps and goals correct as of 17 November 2015

Recent results[edit]

Date Competition Location Opponent Result Scorers
12 November 2014
Friendly
Ferrol, Spain  Belgium
1 – 4
Munir Goal 49'
26 March 2015
Friendly
Cartagena, Spain  Norway
2 – 0
Munir Goal 16', Deulofeu Goal 19'
30 March 2015
Friendly
León, Spain  Belarus
4 – 0
Shestilovsky Goal 25' (o.g.), Deulofeu Goal 49', Munir Goal 53', Gómez Goal 59'
2 September 2015
2017 UEFA U-21 qualification
Tallinn, Estonia  Estonia
2 – 0
Gayà Goal 81', Deulofeu Goal 90+1' (pen.)
7 October 2015
2017 UEFA U-21 qualification
Tbilisi, Georgia  Georgia
5 – 2
Munir Goal 2'73', Asensio Goal 62', Mayoral Goal 67', Ceballos Goal 90'
13 October 2015
2017 UEFA U-21 qualification
Tenerife, Spain  Sweden
1 – 1
Óliver Goal 20'
12 November 2015
2017 UEFA U-21 qualification
Almería, Spain  Georgia
5 – 0
Deulofeu Goal 17'33'84', Williams Goal 56', Ceballos Goal 65'
17 November 2015
2017 UEFA U-21 qualification
Rijeka, Croatia  Croatia
3 – 2
Deulofeu Goal 19' (pen.)54', Asensio Goal 41'

Forthcoming fixtures[edit]

Date Competition Location Opponent Result Scorers
24 March 2016
2017 UEFA U-21 qualification
TBD, Spain  Croatia
1 September 2016
2017 UEFA U-21 qualification
TBD, Spain  San Marino
5 September 2016
2017 UEFA U-21 qualification
TBD, Sweden  Sweden
5 October 2016
2017 UEFA U-21 qualification
TBD, San Marino  San Marino
10 October 2016
2017 UEFA U-21 qualification
TBD, Spain  Estonia

2017 UEFA European Under-21 Championship[edit]

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification
1  Spain 5 4 1 0 16 5 +11 13 Final tournament 24 Mar 1–1 5–0 10 Oct 1 Sep
2  Croatia 5 4 0 1 14 3 +11 12 Possible Play-offs 2–3 1 Sep 1–0 28 Mar 4–0
3  Sweden 4 3 1 0 10 1 +9 10 5 Sep 10 Oct 2 Jun 5–0 3–0
4  Georgia 6 2 0 4 8 12 −4 6 2–5 6 Sep 0–1 3–0 23 Mar
5  Estonia 6 1 1 4 2 15 −13 4 0–2 0–4 6 Oct 1 Sep 0–0
6  San Marino (X) 6 0 1 5 1 15 −14 1 5 Oct 0–3 27 Mar 0–3 1–2
Updated to match(es) played on 17 November 2015. Source: UEFA
(X) Cannot qualify directly as the top team, but may still qualify for the play-offs.

Players[edit]

Current squad[edit]

The following players were named in the squad for 2017 UEFA European Under-21 Championship qualification matches against Georgia and Croatia, at 13 and 17 November 2015.

  • Caps and goals as of 17 November 2015.
0#0 Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club
1 1GK Kepa Arrizabalaga (1994-10-03) 3 October 1994 (age 21) 12 0 Spain Valladolid
13 1GK Alejandro Remiro (1995-03-24) 24 March 1995 (age 20) 0 0 Spain Athletic Bilbao
19 1GK Pau López (1994-12-13) 13 December 1994 (age 21) 0 0 Spain Espanyol
2 2DF Javi Manquillo (1994-05-05) 5 May 1994 (age 21) 7 0 France Marseille
3 2DF José Luis Gayà (1995-05-25) 25 May 1995 (age 20) 6 1 Spain Valencia
4 2DF Jesús Vallejo (1997-01-05) 5 January 1997 (age 19) 4 0 Spain Zaragoza
5 2DF Jonny Castro (1994-03-03) 3 March 1994 (age 21) 7 0 Spain Celta Vigo
12 2DF Jorge Meré (1997-04-17) 17 April 1997 (age 18) 4 0 Spain Sporting Gijón
14 2DF Rubén Duarte (1995-10-10) 10 October 1995 (age 20) 7 0 Spain Espanyol
6 3MF Saúl Ñíguez (1994-11-21) 21 November 1994 (age 21) 15 2 Spain Atlético Madrid
8 3MF Dani Ceballos (1996-08-07) 7 August 1996 (age 19) 7 2 Spain Real Betis
10 3MF Óliver Torres (1994-11-10) 10 November 1994 (age 21) 16 3 Spain Atlético Madrid
11 3MF Marco Asensio (1996-01-21) 21 January 1996 (age 20) 6 2 Spain Espanyol
15 3MF José Rodríguez (1994-12-16) 16 December 1994 (age 21) 6 0 Turkey Galatasaray
16 3MF Denis Suárez (1994-01-06) 6 January 1994 (age 22) 9 0 Spain Villarreal
17 3MF Matías Nahuel (1996-10-22) 22 October 1996 (age 19) 1 0 Spain Villarreal
20 3MF Víctor Camarasa (1994-05-28) 28 May 1994 (age 21) 2 0 Spain Levante
7 4FW Gerard Deulofeu (c) (1994-03-13) 13 March 1994 (age 21) 24 13 England Everton
9 4FW Iñaki Williams (1994-06-15) 15 June 1994 (age 21) 4 1 Spain Athletic Bilbao
18 4FW Munir El Haddadi (1995-09-01) 1 September 1995 (age 20) 9 5 Spain Barcelona
  • Player(s) those had been capped in senior level will be shown in italic.

Recent callups[edit]

The following players have been called up for the team in the last twelve months.

Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Goals Club Latest call-up
GK Rubén Blanco (1995-07-25) 25 July 1995 (age 20) 1 0 Spain Celta Vigo v.  Belarus, 30 March 2015
DF Héctor Bellerín (1995-03-19) 19 March 1995 (age 20) 3 0 England Arsenal v.  Sweden, 13 October 2015
DF Francisco Valera (1994-10-26) 26 October 1994 (age 21) 0 0 Spain Real Betis v.  Sweden, 13 October 2015
MF Sergi Samper (1995-01-20) 20 January 1995 (age 21) 2 0 Spain Barcelona v.  Belarus, 30 March 2015
MF Moi Gómez (1994-06-23) 23 June 1994 (age 21) 3 1 Spain Getafe v.  Belarus, 30 March 2015
FW Borja Mayoral (1997-04-05) 5 April 1997 (age 18) 2 1 Spain Real Madrid v.  Sweden, 13 October 2015
FW Samu Castillejo (1995-01-18) 18 January 1995 (age 21) 4 0 Spain Villarreal v.  Sweden, 13 October 2015
FW Santi Mina (1995-12-07) 7 December 1995 (age 20) 1 0 Spain Valencia v.  Estonia, 2 September 2015

Former squads[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]