Sergio Ramos reckons Spain will have to cope with a hostile reception at the World Cup in Brazil next year.
The Real Madrid defender spoke to the media at Orlando Stadium in Johannesburg as the world and European champions prepare to take on South Africa in an international friendly on Tuesday.
Spain’s last visit to the country in 2010 saw it lift the World Cup for the first time in its history, but Ramos is aware his team will not be able to rely on the kind of backing it received in South Africa in Brazil.
“The competition between Spain and Brazil is very strong, and we don’t expect the Brazil fans to support us the way South Africans do,” the center back told journalists. “Obviously, we will be expecting less support during the World Cup.”
The return to the site of their greatest triumph gave some of the Spain players the opportunity to reminisce about their African success.
“We have played in different countries since we won the World Cup. We are very proud to represent Spain, and it’s good for us to come back to South Africa," Atletico Madrid forward David Villa said. “It really brings back good memories.”
Spain goes into the friendly on the back of an abject performance against Equatorial Guinea, and the world’s No.1 ranked team will be looking for a drastically improved performance in Johannesburg to give those South African fans something to cheer about once more.
- Sports & Recreation
- South Africa