Michu - Why the Swansea man is the perfect false nine for Spain

The Liberty Stadium forward made his international debut for the world champions against Belarus on Friday, and could play a sizeable role in La Roja’s title defence next summer.

With all the attacking talent available to Vicente Del Bosque, picking a player that plays in Wales for the Spain side would have seemed like madness a year ago.

However, amid all the Barcelona and Real Madrid stars, Swansea City attacker Michu takes pride of place in the current La Roja set-up.

Michu got his just rewards for a spectacular 12 months in the Premier League last week with his first appearance for his country. The 27-year-old was deployed in the fabled false nine role, and with his attacking attributes could well be first-choice as furthest man forward come the World Cup in Brazil.

Despite the presence of the likes of Alvaro Negredo, Roberto Soldado and countless other top strikers, Del Bosque seems intent on deploying a false nine to bring his considerable midfield talent into play. Cesc Fabregas has been used as the figurehead in the past, but Michu looks like the perfect player to fulfil his role next summer in South America.

The Swansea attacker’s movement, positional play and reading of the game allow him to assume positions that are difficult for opposing defences to counteract and his footballing intelligence has been on show since he made his first appearance for the Welsh side.

Despite the fact that he is not overly physical, his stature gives his midfielders a visual focal point for their attack and Michu has also proved that he is strong in the air.

The most important attribute to allow him to play in the false nine role is his incredible creativity, flawless touch and ability to bring others into the game. With the likes of Fabregas, Andres Iniesta and David Silva making forward runs to support him, Michu is the ideal player to create space and opportunities for them.

Regardless of his club not being as glamorous as that of some of his illustrious team-mates, it almost looks like the Spain side and their formation is custom-made for him. Michu has attributes that are not possessed by any of the other members of the squad, and as such he has the emphasis to claim the false nine position for the world champions for the foreseeable future.

image: © Benjamin Blackler

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