Belfast Telegraph

Hierro warns Spain to remain fully focused

By Robert Jones

Spain coach Fernando Hierro insists his side can take nothing for granted when they face Morocco in the World Cup this evening - even though their opponents have already been eliminated.

After a topsy-turvy 3-3 draw with Portugal in their opening Group B game, Spain pulled off a narrow 1-0 win over Iran.

Hierro, who took over on the eve of the finals following the sacking of Real Madrid-bound manager Julen Lopetegui, has all but guided the 2010 World Cup winners into the knockout stages.

A surprise defeat to Morocco could yet see them eliminated and the former Spain captain is keen for focus to remain in place in Kaliningrad on Monday.

"Our obligation is to play a good game, to get three points and if we can be at the head of the group - even better," he said at his pre-match press conference. "We know it is going to be a tough match, always when you play against teams who are eliminated you don't know what they are going to do - it could be a big surprise.

"We can't take anything for granted, we have to use our skills and our qualities and that is what is most important going into the match.

"We know that Morocco are an excellent team, they reached the finals of a World Cup after not being here for many years.

"They lost their first match in the last minute with an own goal and had an excellent game against Portugal - we are talking about a tough nut to crack."

Spain vs Morocco

Grpup B:

Kaliningrad Stadium, Today, 7.00 pm

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