Despite the absence of some of their biggest names, La Roja boast a talented squad with plenty of potential and should have more than enough firepower to see off new boys Tahiti. Yet as Spain coach Luis Milla has been stressing to his charges, opening matches are rarely straightforward. Oceania's lone representatives are well aware of their limitations and know that their only chance of springing a surprise against one of the tournament favourites is to maintain their focus for the whole 90 minutes.
8 - The number of times that Spain have won their opening match at the FIFA U-20 World Cup finals. In 12 appearances in the competition, the Spanish have drawn three of their group openers and lost just one, a 2-1 defeat to Argentina at UAE 2003.
Spain striker Oriel Romeu turns 18 on Thursday. Can he mark the occasion by getting on the scoresheet?
"We can't afford to take Tahiti lightly because if you start a game badly or lose concentration, you can make life difficult for yourself, especially when it's your opening match." Spain coach Luis Milla
"We want to show that there are some values in the game that can move mountains. I can't say if we're going to win any of our games but we'll be putting our hearts into each match and a lot of discipline too." Tahiti coach Lionel Charbonnier