Spain goalkeeper Iker Casillas admits the European champions are “feeling anxious” ahead of the showpiece final.
Athough Vicente del Bosque’s side have surprised no one by reaching the World Cup final, the manner in which they have progressed through the competition has.
An opening day defeat to Switzerland was followed by unconvincing displays against Honduras and Chile, and despite topping their group, the Euro 2008 winners edged past their opponents in every round of the knockout stages by just a solitary goal.
And their captain has now acknowledged the players are not relaxed as they prepare for the greatest game of their careers against the Netherlands.
“This is a very important match, the most important of our careers, and we do feel nervous,” said Casillas. “We have felt a bit anxious all the way through the tournament, even the early matches. We are all aware how vital this game is. It is only natural to have a few butterflies.”