Barcelona's Xavi, Andres Iniesta and 7 More Called up to Confederations Cup by Del Bosque for Spain

Denis Doyle

Having won World Cup 2010, Spain booked their place into the 2013 Confederations Cup in Brazil. Coach Vicente Del Bosque will try to win the only cup this Spanish team has missed, and he's called on several Barcelona players to do help do the job.

The Spanish national team will again rely heavily on FC Barcelona players as it tries to sew up every trophy available to them with a Confederations Cup win this summer.

The nine players called up are: GK Victor Valdes, LB Jordi Alba, CB Gerard Pique, MF Andres Iniesta, MF Xavi Herandez, MF Sergio Busquets, MF/FW Cesc Fabregas, FW David Villa, and FW Pedro Rodriguez.

Twenty-six players in all have been selected; three will be cut to make up the final 23-man squad.

Iniesta and Xavi are undroppable and certain to play a role in the team's fate during the tournament. Together, they have won Euro 2008 and 2012 as well as World Cup 2012, in addition to countless trophies for their club.

Busquets's place was never in doubt, as he again showed great class throughout the season. A recent injury which limited him since the Champions League knockout rounds was the only question, but it seems like he will heal in time.

Barring any shifts, they should all start in midfield, possibly alongside Real Madrid's Xabi Alonso.

Thiago Alcantara was not called up, and he is likely to wonder if he will get a spot for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. There are rumors the son of Brazilian World Cup winner Mazinho is looking to exit Barcelona in order to get more playing time.

He would most likely have to take the place of Beñat Exteberria or Javi Garcia before he could challenge as a core player.

In defense, Alba and Pique should compromise half of Spain's backline. Hard as it is to believe due to Barcelona's leaky defense, the Spanish backline has been one of, if not the, best defenses of all time, at least in terms of goals scored against.

Carles Puyol was not called up, missing a summer tournament for the second straight year. His advancing age is a worry if Barca intend to continue to rely on him heavily.

RB Martin Montoya also may be wary that he is not getting called up ahead of the World Cup, especially since right-back is one of the most unsettled positions. Chelsea's Cesar Azpilicueta will battle Real Madrid's Alvaro Arbeloa for the right-back position. Montoya says he wants to remain at Barca, but he surely must want more playing time. Atletico Madrid's Juanfran Tores, who was not called up either, would also be in the mix come World Cup time.

CB Marc Bartra is another youngster who will want more playing time next season in order to make his case for Brazil 2014. Pique and Ramos are near-certainties, which means he would have to take the place of Real Madrid's Raul Albiol.

David Villa, the all-time leading scorer for Spain, was in doubt after a horrific injury made him unable to take the field for Euro 2012. The 2010 World Cup top-scorer has had a good season at Barcelona and Del Bosque has recalled him in favor of other star strikers such as Michu, Alvaro Negredo, Ruben Castro, Iago Aspas or Piti.

Pedro Rodriguez earned himself an automatic place with great scoring form for the national team. Despite his lukewarm club form, Pedro has scored 10 goals this season for La Roja, including an all-important winner away to France in World Cup Qualifying.

Cristian Tello is the Barca forward closest to making the cut, past Pedro and Villa who did get called up. However, with Spain so crowded at the forward position, Tello does not at this moment seem to have a very good chance of making it to the World Cup.

Victor Valdes is at least the #2 choice going into the Confederations Cup. With Iker Casillas injured, Valdes started that same important qualifying game against France, where he was man-of-the-match. After Casillas came back, Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho chose not to give him his starting place back, leaving Del Bosque with a dilemma ahead of him.

Should Valdes retain his place as the #1 because of his great performance for the national team, and because Casillas has not played much lately? Or should he stick by Casillas, who was named the world's best top goalkeeper yet again last year, and has captained Spain to glory time and time again?

Rumored Barca target, Liverpool's Pepe Reina, should be third-choice goalkeeper.

The nine Barcelona players will join Daniel Alves and new signing Neymar, both of whom will play for Brazil, as the players representing Barca present at the Confederations Cup.

Full team:

Goalkeepers: Iker Casillas (Real Madrid), Victor Valdes (Barcelona), Pepe Reina (Liverpool).

Defenders: Ignacio Monreal (Arsenal), Jordi Alba (Barcelona), Raul Albiol (Real Madrid), Gerard Pique (Barcelona), Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid), Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea), Alvaro Arbeloa (Real Madrid).

Midfielders: Andres Iniesta (Barcelona), Santi Cazorla (Arsenal), Sergio Busquets (Barcelona), Xabi Alonso (Real Madrid), Xavi Hernandez (Barcelona), Javi Martinez (Bayern Munich), Javi Garcia (Manchester City), Beñat Exteberria (Real Betis).

Forwards: Juan Mata (Chelsea), David Silva (Manchester City), Cesc Fabregas (Barcelona), Pedro Rodriguez (Barcelona), Jesus Navas (Sevilla), David Villa (Barcelona), Fernando Torres (Chelsea), Roberto Soldado (Valencia).

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