Spain vs France: Check out LiveScore’s combined XI
After prevailing in two pulsating semi-finals, Spain and France will meet on Sunday in the UEFA Nations League final.
It is set to be another thrilling affair with both sides having looked impressive in their midweek victories and plenty of quality will be on show at the San Siro.
To preview the clash, we have pulled together a combined XI from the squads of both sides — see if you agree with our team and let us know what you think on our social media channels.
Goalkeeper: Hugo Lloris (France)
Despite a resurgence at club level for Manchester United, David de Gea still currently finds himself kept out of the Spain team by Athletic Bilbao stopper Unai Simon.
However, there is little debate over France’s main man between the sticks — with 132 caps to his name, World Cup winner and Les Bleus skipper Hugo Lloris gets the nod in our XI.
Right-back: Cesar Azpilicueta (Spain)
While Benjamin Pavard has unquestionably been a revelation for France since breaking through, the Bayern Munich man is deployed by his nation in an extremely attacking role.
However, for our 4-3-3 shape, we have opted for experience and solidity in the form of Chelsea captain Cesar Azpilicueta — the 32-year-old Spaniard is now firmly established with La Roja and is one of Europe’s most dependable full-backs.
Centre-back: Aymeric Laporte (Spain)
Strictly speaking, both members of our centre-half pairing hail from French shores — but Manchester City star Aymeric Laporte will instead be starring at the heart of Spain’s defence after controversially switching allegiance this summer.
Despite racking up 51 appearances at youth level, France opted not hand the 27-year-old a single senior cap and the silky defender now represents La Roja, qualifying for citizenship via his long stint with former club Bilbao.
Centre-back: Raphael Varane (France)
Partnering Laporte is a player who represents the other side of Manchester, though Raphael Varane is still relatively new to Premier League life following a £34million summer move from Real Madrid.
With three LaLiga titles, four Champions Leagues and a 2018 World Cup win to his name, the 28-year-old is one of the most decorated defenders in the modern game.
Left-back: Theo Hernandez (France)
While our right-back berth was all about experience, this position goes to a new face for Les Bleus in the form of Thursday’s late goal hero Theo Hernandez.
Called up for the first time only last month, Hernandez marked a fine all-round performance in the Nations League semi-final against Belgium with a stunning last-minute strike — surely enough to ensure the AC Milan star starts in Sunday’s showpiece.
Centre midfield: Sergio Busquets (Spain)
Every good midfield needs someone to do the unfashionable jobs — and few have made a career out of going under the radar with their work quite like Spain skipper Sergio Busquets.
The 33-year-old is one of the few survivors from Barcelona’s vintage era and is now universally respected as one of the greatest of his generation, despite not often dominating the headlines.
Centre midfield: Paul Pogba (France)
At times frustrating, at times brilliant — Paul Pogba certainly divides opinion but when he is at his best, the enigmatic Frenchman is one of the world’s most dangerous midfielders.
Already with seven Premier League assists to his name this term for Manchester United, the 28-year-old was outstanding against Belgium on Thursday and will play a key role in his side’s final hopes come Sunday evening.
Centre midfield: Gavi (Spain)
With one experienced campaigner and another at the peak of his powers, our midfield trio is rounded off with a dash of youthful flamboyance from Spanish wonderkid Gavi.
Having only recently turned 17, the Barcelona starlet became his country’s youngest ever player when starting against Italy and did not look one bit out of place, suggesting an extremely exciting future lies ahead.
Right wing: Ferran Torres (Spain)
On the right of our front trio is Manchester City star Ferran Torres, with the versatile 21-year-old continuing to show rapid improvement at both club level and on the international stage.
Despite his tender age, Torres plays a pivotal role in Luis Enrique’s La Roja side and stepped up once again with both goals in the 2-1 defeat of Italy — taking his tally to six in his last eight Spain appearances.
Centre forward: Karim Benzema (France)
It is impossible to leave Karim Benzema out of this stellar XI given the 33-year-old Real Madrid star has enjoyed a better start to the 2021-22 campaign than any other forward in Europe.
With an outrageous 16 direct goal involvements (nine goals, seven assists) in just eight LaLiga games, the marksman is in divine touch and it was no surprise to see him spark the Les Bleus comeback against Belgium with another strike.
Left wing: Kylian Mbappe (France)
Taking the final spot in our side is the poster boy of French football Kylian Mbappe, who has long seemed destined to play his club football on Spanish shores.
Whether or not a summer move to Real Madrid materialises remains to be seen but the 22-year-old’s goal and assist against Belgium provided a timely reminder of just how influential the speedster can be.
Let us know what you think of our combined XI — and who would make your team — on our social media channels!