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Last Updated: Thursday, 2 September, 2004, 10:08 GMT 11:08 UK
Scots 'like San Marino'
Arsenal striker Jose Antonio Reyes
Spain v Scotland
Fri 3 Sep, Valencia
2100 BST kick-off
Live coverage on BBC Radio Scotland 810MW and BBC Sport website
Arsenal striker Jose Antonio Reyes says that Spain coach Luis Aragones sees Scotland as ideal warm-up opponents - as he likens them to San Marino.

The minnows of Europe are future opponents for Spain.

And Reyes said: "Our coach says they play in the same way as San Marino, who we meet later in our World Cup group.

"They will be ideal preparation, because they play the same long-ball game and have similar styles of players who are strong and physical."

Reyes, who turned 21 on Wednesday, realises that a defeat for Scotland in Friday's friendly in Valencia would heap more pressure on their highly-criticised manager.

But he said: "I would love to score one or two goals against Scotland as that would be a nice way to celebrate my birthday.

These are the sort of players you want to play against
Scotland goalkeeper Craig Gordon
"I know Berti Vogts is under a lot of pressure just now because Scotland have had some bad results.

"But we can't be concerned about that and if my goals mean he loses his job then that's football.

"I have to do my best for Spain and my job is to score goals.

"All we are thinking about is winning the match and getting ready for the qualifiers."

Reyes, who moved to London in a 10m move from Seville, has scored four goals in as many games in helping Arsenal top the English Premiership and one in the Community Shield.

Young Hearts goalkeeper Craig Gordon is not fazed by the prospect of facing some of Europe's top strikers at a time when Scotland have slumped to a worst-ever 67 in the world rankings.

"It could be a busy night, but that is what you train for all your life," he said. "I am not afraid of it.

"Reyes has scored in every game, but hopefully we can stop him."

Gordon is set to win only his second full Scotland cap in the Levante Stadium in Valencia on Friday in the final warm-up match before the World Cup qualifiers begin next week.

New Spanish coach Aragones is without Raul, but his Real Madrid team-mate, Fernando Morientes, could partner Reyes in a still-formidable attack.

The 21-year-old Gordon gets his chance to stop them scoring due to injury for Celtic's even younger David Marshall and lack of first-team football for Parkhead team-mate Rab Douglas and Norwich City's Paul Gallacher.

But Gordon added: "These are the sort of players you want to play against.

"I'm looking forward to it. I can't wait actually."

Interview: Scotland coach Berti Vogts

Gray withdraws for Scots
01 Sep 04  |  Scotland
Taylor admits Vogts doubts
01 Sep 04  |  Scotland

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