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Spain to take on Colombia in football friendly match

IANS logoIANS 06-06-2017

Thousands of Colombians who live here are expected to watch the match and could even come close to outnumbering the Spanish fans for what is effectively a warm-up for Spain's World Cup qualifying tie away to Macedonia on Sunday, reports Xinhua news agency.

The Colombia side will contain players well-known in Spain, such as Real Madrid's James Rodriguez and former Atletico Madrid forward Radamel Falcao, while they can expect to have a famous fan in the stands in the figure of pop singer Shakira, who is the wife of Barcelona and Spanish defender Gerard Pique.

With no Real Madrid players included after Saturday's Champions League final win, Pique will be at the heart of the defence of the Spain side, while coach Julen Lopetegui can be expected to hand out a couple of debuts.

Real Sociedad's Asier Illaramendi, who had to drop out of the last Spain squad through illness, is set to start, while Athletic Club Bilbao's young goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga, who is close to signing a new contract with his club, can also expect to appear at some stage of the game.

Diego Costa will lead Spain's attack on what is expected to be a hot evening in Murcia, as a heatwave grips Spain.

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