Pete Jenson: Spanish even struggle to get their party started

Jsck Warner's suggestion that England's World Cup bid was lagging far behind its rivals, such as Spain and Portugal, came as a surprise to many – especially the Spanish themselves.

This week Spain's FA confirmed its intention to join the race for the 2018 finals, probably as part of a joint bid with Portugal, but it was just about all it could manage to remember when its own birthday was.

The good and the great from the country's football past gathered at the federation's headquarters on Tuesday in Madrid with the current players from the European Championship winning team to celebrate the federation's centenary but it was later remembered, by various commentators, notably sports paper Marca, that the FA had in fact celebrated it's 75th anniversary... 21 years ago!

So was it founded in 1909 or 1913? The country's president Jose Luis Zapatero is none the wiser after being handed a Spain replica shirt at the event with the date 1913 above the crest. Zapatero was at the event to add his weight to a Fifa education initiative, celebrate the 100 years (or should that be 96?) and endorse Spain's bid.

He will be there again in December when Spain makes an official presentation. The country is still hurting from missing out on the Olympics and is wary that any joint bid with Portugal is likely to be frowned upon by Sepp Blatter who has already indicated that he wants a single nation.

Spain decided to go it alone when bidding for Euro 2004 only to see Fifa give Portugal, who they had rejected as running mates because they thought they didn't need them, the tournament.

Their problem is that without Porto's Estadio do Dragao, Benfica's Estadio da Luz and Sporting Lisbon's Jose Alvalade ground they might struggle to meet Fifa's demands for twelve 40,000 capacity all-seater venues. The country is hoping that Blatter's reservations about awarding the tournament to two countries will be eased by a high speed rail link joining Madrid with Lisbon.

Spain will also have few problems when it comes to finding the right personalities to front its campaign. The smiling faces of the players who won the European Championship last year, many of whom also won the treble with Barcelona, will be something England, Russia and the US will struggle to beat.

It just needs the Spanish FA to work out what day it is.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Seifeddine Rezgui: What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?

Making of a killer

What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?
UK Heatwave: Temperatures on the tube are going to exceed the legal limit for transporting cattle

Just when you thought your commute couldn't get any worse...

Heatwave will see temperatures on the Tube exceed legal limit for transporting cattle
Exclusive - The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Swapping Bucharest for London

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Meet the man who swapped Romania for the UK in a bid to provide for his family, only to discover that the home he left behind wasn't quite what it seemed
Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Solar power will help bring down electricity prices over the next five years, according to a new report. But it’s cheap imports of ‘dirty power’ that will lower them the most
Katy Perry prevented from buying California convent for $14.5m after nuns sell to local businesswoman instead

No grace of God for Katy Perry as sisters act to stop her buying convent

Archdiocese sues nuns who turned down star’s $14.5m because they don’t approve of her
Ajmer: The ancient Indian metropolis chosen to be a 'smart city' where residents would just be happy to have power and running water

Residents just want water and power in a city chosen to be a ‘smart’ metropolis

The Indian Government has launched an ambitious plan to transform 100 of its crumbling cities
Michael Fassbender in 'Macbeth': The Scottish play on film, from Welles to Cheggers

Something wicked?

Films of Macbeth don’t always end well - just ask Orson Welles... and Keith Chegwin
10 best sun creams for body

10 best sun creams for body

Make sure you’re protected from head to toe in the heatwave
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - Milos Raonic has ability to get to the top but he must learn to handle pressure in big games

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon files

Milos Raonic has ability to get to the top but he must learn to handle pressure in big games
Women's World Cup 2015: How England's semi-final success could do wonders for both sexes

There is more than a shiny trophy to be won by England’s World Cup women

The success of the decidedly non-famous females wearing the Three Lions could do wonders for a ‘man’s game’ riddled with cynicism and greed
How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth: Would people co-operate to face down a global peril?

How to stop an asteroid hitting Earth

Would people cooperate to face a global peril?
Just one day to find €1.6bn: Greece edges nearer euro exit

One day to find €1.6bn

Greece is edging inexorably towards an exit from the euro
New 'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could help surgeons and firefighters, say scientists

'Iron Man' augmented reality technology could become reality

Holographic projections would provide extra information on objects in a person's visual field in real time
Sugary drinks 'are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year'

Sugary drinks are killing 184,000 adults around the world every year

The drinks that should be eliminated from people's diets
Pride of Place: Historians map out untold LGBT histories of locations throughout UK

Historians map out untold LGBT histories

Public are being asked to help improve the map