Alonso blasts friendly timing

  • Last Updated: August 12 2012, 13:14 BST

Real Madrid midfielder Xabi Alonso has criticised the timing of Spain's friendly against Puerto Rico on Tuesday.

Xabi Alonso: Hoping to start the year well

The encounter takes place at the Juan Ramon Loubriel Stadium just over a week before the first leg of their Super Cup clash against Barcelona at the Nou Camp on August 22.

"There's a little way to go, but the base is there and the pieces have come together," Alonso told AS. "It's been a short pre-season because we haven't had much time and now we're heading off with the national team and we'll be away for a few days, but we're used to it. It isn't anything new and we hope to start the year well."

Real start their campaign at the Bernabeu against Valencia, who finished third behind los Blancos and Barcelona last term.

"We have to be ready because they are matches that require you to give 100% and we have to be in peak form right from the start," Alonso added. "We can't think that it's going to be easy. We know that all Liga matches are very important and the first more so.

"In addition, the Supercopa is the first title and we want to win it. It is important because you're playing for a trophy, but I don't think it offers any advantage for the future."