MADRID, Spain – Struggling Chelsea forward Fernando Torres, who was with Liverpool one of the top strikers in the world, has been dropped from Spain's national squad.
This is the first national side match without Torres in more than five years.
Torres was omitted Friday from the roster announced by coach Vicente del Bosque for next week's exhibition against Venezuela.
Wednesday's game is the last before Del Bosque picks the players who will defend Spain's title at the European Championship in Poland and Ukraine from June 8-July 1.
Del Bosque says "Torres is not in good form and we believed in this case it was better if he didn't come. But this doesn't mean anything. This is not a definitive list for Euro."
"Torres is not in good form and we believed in this case it was better if he didn't come," Del Bosque said. "But this doesn't mean anything. This is not a definitive list for Euro."
Torres has been a regular on Spain's team since 2004, scoring the winning goal against Germany in the Euro 2008 final for Spain's first major trophy in 44 years.
The 27-year-old hadn't been dropped by his country since November 2006, but his last competitive goal for Spain came in September 2010. Torres, who has 27 goals in 91 appearances for Spain, hasn't scored for Chelsea since October.
Del Bosque also left out Barcelona forward Pedro Rodriguez, another player from the 2010 World Cup champions.
Torres was replaced by Valencia striker Roberto Soldado, and Athletic Bilbao forward Iker Muniain got his first call-up. The promising Spain under-21 player was among four Bilbao players included alongside striker Fernando Llorente and defenders Javi Martinez and Andoni Iraiola.
Goalkeepers: Iker Casillas (Real Madrid), Pepe Reina (Liverpool, England), Victor Valdes (Barcelona)
Defenders: Jordi Alba (Valencia), Alvaro Arbeloa (Real Madrid), Andoni Iraiola (Athletic Bilbao), Javi Martinez (Athletic Bilbao), Gerard Pique (Barcelona), Carles Puyol (Barcelona), Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid)
Midfielders: Thiago Alcantara (Barcelona), Xabi Alonso (Real Madrid), Sergio Busquets (Barcelona), Santi Cazorla (Malaga), Cesc Fabregas (Barcelona), Xavi Hernandez (Barcelona), Andres Iniesta (Barcelona)
Forwards: Fernando Llorente (Athletic Bilbao), Juan Mata (Chelsea), Iker Muniain (Athletic Bilbao), Jesus Navas (Sevilla), Alvaro Negredo (Sevilla), David Silva (Manchester City, England), Roberto Soldado (Valencia)
Based on reporting by the Associated Press.