AL KHOR, Qatar (AP) — Spain coach Luis Enrique said it was a “special day” after his team drew 1-1 with Germany in the World Cup. on Sunday.
But it had nothing to do with football.
Luis Enrique said that Sunday would have been the 13th birthday of his daughter, Xana Martínez, who died three years ago of a rare form of bone cancer.
“It was a special day for me and my family,” said Luis Enrique. “Obviously we no longer have our daughter with us physically, but she is still present every day. We remember her a lot, we laugh and think about how she would act in every situation we experience ”.
Luis Enrique had previously published a video on Instagram in which he said that “not only did we play Germany today, but Xanita would have turned 13.” He wished her “a good day” wherever she was at the moment.
“That’s how life works,” he said after the game. “It’s not just about beautiful things and finding happiness, it’s about knowing how to manage these moments.”
Luis Enrique, 52, a former Barcelona player and manager, is participating in his first World Cup as manager of Spain. He left the national team after learning about his daughter’s cancer, returning some time later.
Spain will advance to the round of 16 at the World Cup in Qatar if they avoid defeat against Japan in their final group game on Thursday.
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