In 2010, Spain was not just a dominant force in international football, they were THE dominant force. A decade on, and Spain is still a football powerhouse, but has noticeably fallen behind other European powers such as France, Belgium, and England, who all boast an impressive cache of young and exciting footballers. La Furia Roja can’t match up with those teams in terms of raw talent, but a well-coached and disciplined Spanish squad is definitely still a threat, especially with Alvaro Morata at the head of the beast.
A native of Madrid, Morata cuts an imposing figure at 6’3” and 185 pounds, but he’s so much more than just a big body striker. The big 28-year-old has been known to use not just his size, but also his impressive pace to beat defenders and find open spaces. He’s a great lad to have on the pitch because of his high energy and work rate, especially from the striker position.
Morata will set up as the central forward or striker more often than not, but he can also play out from the wing from time to time if need be, adding a useful level of versatility to his game. When in his role as the number nine at the top of the formation, Morata is very adept at dropping into helpful zones to help link up play and initiate the attack. His big body and strength allow him to hold defenders off as he holds up play to allow his teammates to join the attack, and then he gets on his horse and will more often than not put the finishing touches on a move with his opportunistic positional sense and clinical finishing ability.
He was with Real Madrid from 2010-2014, but only saw significant time in the final year of that quartet. He spent the next two years with Juventus before returning to Madrid for the most prolific season of his career, scoring 20 goals in 43 apps in 2016-2017. After that he bounced around between Chelsea and Atletico Madrid before eventually landing back in Juventus, for whom he is currently playing on loan with 13 goals in 29 appearances this season.
All-in-all, Morata has netted 161 goals in 433 career club apps, while also racking up a fair bit of silverware: a pair each of La Liga, Copa Del Rey, and Champions League titles with Real Madrid, two Serie A championships and a Coppa Italia with Juventus, and an FA Cup with Chelsea.
Morata has carved out a seemingly solid role as the top striker for the national team recently, netting five goals for La Furia since the start of the Euro 2020 qualifiers. All told, Morata has netted 18 goals for his nation in 36 caps, a 0.5 goals per appearance rate that would put him fourth all-time in Spain.
Spain has a very good chance of getting through the group stage at this summer’s Euro 2020 tournament, and we would suggest trying to parlay a wager on Spain to win their group with a few other likely group winners for a nice payday. They could always make some noise in the knockout rounds, but we wouldn’t put any money on Spain past the quarterfinals.
Morata has the best chance of any Spaniard to win top goalscorer honors considering he’s scored 10 more goals for his country than any other attacking player in the team. He’s a penalty taker and Spain is in a relatively weak group with Poland, Sweden and Slovakia, so if he can get a solid tally heading into the knockout stage, he could have a chance, but we wouldn’t suggest putting any cash on him unless you’ve got some real juicy insider info.