Socceroos opposition scouting report: Spain

In an extremely tough group there will be no greater challenge for the Socceroos than taking on the defending World and European champions.

While they have a wealth of world-class talent all over the park, there will be no unknowns for Postecoglou's troops, with Spain sticking to their own unique style no matter what.   They will play a 4-3-3 with two pacy wingers and a midfield that enjoy keeping the ball and running their opponents ragged with crisp, clinical short-passing.   Australia's best hope will be to sit back, close the space around the box and absorb the pressure before hitting the Spaniards on the break with quick counter-attacks.   One of the traits of the Spanish side during their era of dominance has been coach Vicente Del Bosque's ability to maintain a settled squad.   The majority of the squad that were successful in South Africa in 2010 and at the Euro's two years ago will make the trip to Brazil.   The likes of Xavi, Sergio Busquets, Andres Iniesta, Xabi Alonso and Cesc Fabregas will fight for the three spots in midfield.   Further forward they have David Silva, Koke, Santi Cazorla David Villa, Juan Mata, Jesus Navas and Pedro to choose from with some big names likely to have to be left at home.   Del Bosque isn't short on options for a central striker either. Brazilian-born Diego Costa's controversy decision to choose Spain over the hosts – and his sublime form for Atletico Madrid – means he is likely to be the first-choice.   But they can also call on the likes of Manchester City's Alvaro Negredo, Chelsea’s Fernando Torres and Fernando Llorente of Juventus, further underlying the size of the task at hand for the Socceroos.   The final chance to see the Socceroos on home soil before they head to Brazil 2014 will be when they take on South Africa in a farewell game on May 26 in Sydney. Tickets for the match, presented by NAB, are on sale now. Click here to secure yours today.