Sports

Spain worried poor pitch conditions could harm passing game at World Cup

Spanish national team players attend a training session at the Atletico Paranaense training center in Curitiba, Brazil, Tuesday, June 10, 2014. Spain will play in group B of the Brazil 2014 World Cup. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

Spanish national team players attend a training session at the Atletico Paranaense training center in Curitiba, Brazil, Tuesday, June 10, 2014. Spain will play in group B of the Brazil 2014 World Cup. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)  (The Associated Press)

Spain is worried that poor pitch conditions in Brazil could hurt its playing style as it tries to defend its World Cup title.

Spain often preaches the importance of a well-maintained playing surface for its quick-passing, possession-based game, which it said let it down in a 1-1 opening draw against Italy at Euro 2012.

Spain striker Diego Costa says "the field has to be wet and well-groomed" for Friday's opener against the Netherlands at Salvador's Arena Fonte Nova.

That is looking like a tall at some venues.

Italy and England play Saturday at the Arena da Amazonia in Manaus where, where the pitch is dry with white stripes visible.

The grass being used at World Cup venues combines European and South American seeds — with the latter known for slowing the ball.