There was talk at the start of the week that Fernando Torres would be included in Spain’s provisional Euro 2016 squad, but Vicente del Bosque opted against calling up the in-form Atletico Madrid striker.
Torres scored his seventh goals in 11 appearances during Atleti’s 2-0 win over Celta Vigo on Saturday and was probably quietly optimistic about a recall but, ultimately, it wasn’t to be.
However, the 32-year-old isn’t concerned. Following the announcement, the centre-forward admitted there’s only one thing on his mind at present: the Champions League final against Real Madrid on May 28.
SUBMIT AN ARTICLE
Apply to become a GMS writer by signing up and submitting a 250-word test article: http://gms.to/haveyoursay5
"I'm not worried about the Euro, I've got the biggest game of my life to play," Torres was quoted as saying by Goal. "We are facing an opportunity that life does not give you many times.
"The growth of this club, to reach two finals in three years, was unimaginable, but we are facing a new chapter in our history and we must write it with a happy ending."
Torres: It doesn't matter that it's Real Madrid
Torres also insists it doesn’t matter that Real Madrid are Atletico’s opponents in the Champions League final.
Next weekend’s match is a re-run of the 2014 final, which Los Blancos won thanks to Sergio Ramos’ header in the third minute of stoppage time.
Atleti had led since the 36th minute thanks to a goal from Diego Godin but, after conceding the equaliser at the death, went on to lose the final 4-1 in extra-time.
"The opponent in a final is not important,” Torres added, “what matters is the result and is the only thing that is going to stay in people's heads.
"We see an opportunity to do something that has never been done.
"There is obviously a rivalry with Real Madrid but that changes in Europe, the games from before count for nothing."
Other big names left out by Del Bosque
Torres wasn’t the only big name left out of the provisional Spain squad by Del Bosque.
Chelsea’s Diego Costa, Arsenal midfielder Santi Cazorla and Manchester United playmaker Juan Mata also missed the cut.
Juventus’ Alvaro Morata is expected to lead the line for La Roja this summer, with Real Madrid’s Lucas Vazquez and Athletic Bilbao’s veteran striker Aritz Aduriz as back-up.
The likes of Pedro, Isco, Andres Iniesta, Cesc Fabregas, Saul Niguez and Nolito have also earned a call-up.
Torres desperate to win Champions League with Atleti
Torres has already won the World Cup and European Championships with Spain but admits winning the Champions League with Atletico would be his greatest achievement.
We’re now just over a week away before we find out if Torres can help make that dream become a reality.
Will Atletico Madrid beat Real Madrid in the Champions League final? Have your say by leaving a comment below.