Spain's defender Sergio Ramos reacts during a friendly football match Spain vs Germany at the Balaidos stadium in Vigo on November 18, 2014. AFP PHOTO / JAVIER SORIANO
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At the beginning of 2014, Vicente del Bosque's Spain were serious contenders to become only the third nation after Italy and Brazil to successfully defend their World Cup title.Del Bosque is in the process of integrating a new generation of players following the international retirement of decorated stalwarts like Xavi, Xabi Alonso and David Villa.Brazil-born striker Diego Costa will surely find the form on the international stage that makes him so lethal at club level, while del Bosque can still call on the vast experience of such proven winners as captain and goalkeeper Iker Casillas, defenders Sergio Ramos and Gerard Pique and midfielders Cesc Fabregas, Andres Iniesta and David Silva.
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