After marking his 100th appearance for Spain with a second-half goal, Spain captain Sergio Ramos said that it was "a pity" his side had to a settle for a 1-1 FIFA World Cup qualifying draw at home to Finland.
At 26, the Real Madrid CF defender became the youngest Spanish player to reach a century of caps and looked to have set the world and European champions on course for three points with a well-placed 49th-minute header in Gijon. The side propping up Group I responded, however, Teemu Pukki finishing off a swift counterattack to leave Spain two points adrift of France ahead of Tuesday's meeting between the top two in Saint-Denis.
"[Looking at the result] it's a real pity, especially after I celebrated my 100th cap with a goal," Ramos said. "We completely controlled that game but ultimately let it out of our grasp. We are not happy. We just weren't precise enough when it came to finishing [Finland] off."
The former Sevilla FC man insisted he and his team-mates were in "no way thinking about the France match" before Friday's game, but that is now at the forefront of their minds. "We will be facing a great team on Tuesday but we can beat them and it's that mentality we'll take there."
Ramos made his international debut as an 18-year-old in a 3-0 friendly victory over Chile in Salamanca in March 2005 and, following his goal against Finland, has now registered nine for La Roja. He joins a select group of Spanish centurions alongside Andoni Zubizarreta, Raúl González, Iker Casillas, Xavi Hernández, Xabi Alonso, Fernando Torres and Carles Puyol.
"It's been something of great pride for me to have defended my country's colours for so many years and this moment is something to enjoy on a personal level," he said.
Vicente del Bosque, meanwhile, oversaw his 69th game in charge of Spain, breaking László Kubala's record; not that the 62-year-old was in the mood to celebrate. "What had appeared impossible came to pass: Finland scored," he said. "We dominated the first and second halves but have ended with a draw. There are still four games to go for us in this group, however, a long way yet."
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