• Rooms The theater of Niklas Landin that decentralized Spain: "I have not hit him in the face"

Quick memory exercise: Who won the consolation final of the last soccer World Cup?

And the game for third place in the last Euroleague?

If they are followers of

Luka Modric

or Barça basketball, they may remember.

But they will soon be forgotten.

Matches between the losers in the semifinals of any tournament are awkward, often bizarre, and leave little impression on the fans.

They're only really attractive at the Olympics.

Why play them then?

For the business, of course, every final requires a prologue, but also for the players.

Although it may seem otherwise, most value going home with a victory as a souvenir and a medal around their necks.

At the Scandic Talk hotel in Stockholm, this Saturday, despite the guardianship of the early morning transfer from Gdansk, the Spanish team woke up with a different spirit, happy faces, energy, thanks to the goal of beating Sweden this Sunday (6:00 p.m., Teledeporte) in the consolation final of the World Cup.

«It is that finishing fourth is shit, it is the worst.

In the 2015 World Cup, for example, we reached the semifinals, which is great, but we lost the last two games and we went home as if we had been eliminated in the first phase, all of us in pieces.

Leaving with a medal is something important, something big, even if it is not valued so much, "he comments in conversation with EL MUNDO

Jorge Maqueda

, a specialist.

He has played a match for third place up to six times, with four wins and two losses.

He won the 2011 World Cup, as now in Sweden and against Sweden, in the 2014 European Championship, in the 2020 Tokyo Games and in the 2021 World Cup. And he lost in the 2012 European Championship and in that 2015 World Cup.

«Now it tastes little to you because of the disgust of the semifinals, but when time passes you remember the medal.

It will also be important to have a better Pre-Olympic, so you have to win, " Alex Dujshebaev

also explains

while his eldest son,


, flutters around him in the hotel hall.

The little one,


, is at home in Kielce, with his grandfather, a certain



psychological work

"The most difficult thing in these games is to be focused, to find motivation so quickly after such a tough defeat," says the older Dujshebaev, convinced that more could be done in the semifinals against Denmark.

It is the feeling of the team.

It was already known that the rival was very good,






, but he lost due to his own mistakes, due to errors in simple launches.

In yesterday's training session at the gigantic Tele2 Arena,

Jordi Ribera

tried to erase what had happened from the minds of his players through silence.

Not a comment on the defeat: all indications about Sweden.

"We already know what it's about.

The physical does not matter so much.

They are psychological matches.

The team that recovers before the disappointment of not being in the final is the one that wins.

It's a bitch that they eliminate you, but we can't play the semifinals again, "Maqueda concludes and, in his analysis of the rival, a name:

Jim Gottfridsson


Sasa Pahic Szabo / kolektiff WORLD

And it is that this World Cup has turned out crookedly for Sweden.

She has organized the championship up to five times and only the first time, in prehistory, in 1954, she finished champion.

In the rest, all disappointments, as in 2011, when they lost the bronze against Spain.

This time it was the good one and nothing.

His team, finally revived after the times of

Magnus Wislander

, had just been European champion in 2022 and world runner-up in 2021. The entire organization was focused on his victory, with all possible perks, from choosing a first-round group to Stay at a fixed location.

And despite everything, a disappointment.

Their star, their centre-back, Gottfridsson, broke a finger in the quarterfinals against Egypt and the whole project fell apart.

In the semifinals, against France, the mental blow was still latent and the other referents, the winger

Eric Johansson

or the goalkeeper

Andreas Palicka

, did not get a pass.

Against Spain this Sunday the Scandinavian team is unknown.

In the future, not many fans will remember what happened in the consolidation final, but the players will, well, they will.

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  • Articles Javier Sanchez