Luis Enrique refused to blame Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea for Spain’s shock defeat to Ukraine on Tuesday evening.
Spain remain top by a point as a result, but they left Kiev with nothing after Viktor Tsygankov came off the bench to hand Ukraine a 1-0 victory.
Andriy Shevchenko set the hosts up to defend and stifle their visitors and they successfully held their clean sheet, allowing Tsygankov to secure the points.
He did so in the 76th minute, breaking straight between the central defenders to collect Andriy Yarmolenko’s precise pass and fire past De Gea.
De Gea was caught out well advanced from his goal line with Tsygankov scoring past the Spaniard from outside the area.
However, Enrique defended his goalkeeper, he told reporters: “You can always do more, but blaming De Gea is already a bad habit.
“If David is blamed for a game like this, switch it off and we’ll leave.”
Enrique added: “If you attack in a continuous way, you know there are transitions. If a team defends and keeps it at 0-0, they grow, and in one action they’ve caught us. We have to congratulate them.
“Nothing happens because in one or two games you don’t score goals. We created chances to kill them off. It was a game clearly under our control, with opponents closing the passes and the passing lines.
“We created chances with Adama [Traore] through his overlapping. In the end, we went into panic mode. I’ve lost lots of these games in my career. The opponent is growing and then in a transition…
“The conclusion is I liked the attitude of the players. I like what I see.”