Spain set for Russia, Wales eyeing a play-off spot

Isco Spain

Their 3-0 victory in Turkey saw them leap to the top of the group above Croatia who could only draw 1-1 with Finland.

The chaos has spilled onto the football pitch and the national team, with Gerard Pique being booed at training sessions throughout the week after voting in the banned referendum, while the Barcelona defender received a mixture of support and boos from supporters in the game against Albania. They now have 20 points with one round of games to go in the group qualifiers.

Much of the talk coming into the match was about Pique and last weekend's events in Catalonia, and Lopetegui hailed the fans who cheered the Barca man upon coming off in the 60th minute.

"We have a great relationship, despite our different viewpoints and personalities".

If they slip up, Wales (who won 1-0 away in Georgia) and Republic of Ireland (who won 2-0 at home to Macedonia) could take top spot.

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Mr Puigdemont must return to the path of law before any negotiation could take place, it said said in a statement (in Spanish ). King Felipe made his own TV address on Tuesday night, calling Sunday's Catalan referendum illegal and undemocratic.

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Spain, along with Belgium, Germany and England are the only European nations to have booked their berth for Russian Federation but with one qualifier remaining, plenty of other names will be added to the list in the next couple of days.

"As a Spaniard, I don't like what's happening, but let's hope it all gets resolved quickly and we can get back to living in a free democracy and enjoying sports, which is what makes us all happy".

Rodrigo spurned an early chance to put Spain ahead as he stabbed wide from Jordi Alba's left-wing cross before Azdren Llullaku forced David De Gea into a routine save at the other end. "We are delighted and proud of what we have achieved because it's very important for Spain".

"The cards were the result of the game because there were disputes, and we lost control of the game at some point".

The midfielder backed Pique a day later, but said it was inevitable his team mate would face the wrath of some supporters against Albania. "We created four or five opportunities, which against Spain isn't easy".

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