In Spain, political divisions and local nationalism among the regions during the civil war, had reflection in football. Barcelona and Athletic de Bilbao became synonymous with history of their regions Catalonia and Basque country. They were representatives of autonomy and the nationalist aspirations of their regions. After the victory of Franco in the civil war he started a process for nationalization of Spanish football, which had the goal of the projection of national team’s image. The Spanish Football Association and the ministry of Sport were placed under absolute military control. The Football Association was under the administration of the colonel, Troncoso, and the Minister for Sport was a general, Moscardό. (Football Nationality and the State, Duke V., Crolley L., p.30, Identity, nation-state and football in Spain. The evolution of nationalist feelings in Spanish football, Goig R.L., p.57, Soccer & Society Vol. 9, No. 1, January 2008, 56–63).
The leader of the Spanish Football Association colonel Troncoso gave a political motivation to the Spanish players during the civil war in order to continue to play. During the summer of 1939 the colonel said that sport constitutes the necessary way through which the country has the ability to improve its men and have them suitably prepared for action at any time they maybe needed. So football put under the exploitation of Franco’s regime in order to keep men prepared for military action. Through sports and especially football, players would be maintained in excellent physical situation in the case when the armed forces called them to fight. (Football Nationality and the State, Duke V., Crolley L., p.30).