Saturday's defeat at Wembley wasn't Spain's finest hour, not that the reigning European and World Champions will be too troubled. Their form contrasts markedly between friendlies and where it matters, in competitive matches.
England, Italy, Argentina and Portugal have all beaten Spain in friendly games in the last year, while Mexico got a draw in Spain's first game after they were crowned world champions. So what?
In competitive matches, La Furia Roja just can't stop winning. The number one-ranked team in the world have won every single competitive home match since a 1-0 loss to Romania in Cadiz five years ago - that's 24 consecutive victories on Spanish soil. Spain haven't lost a competitive game since their surprise opening World Cup loss to Switzerland in Durban 17 months ago and even then they dominated play.
Spain's players are venerated as global stars and after decades of underachieving at international tournaments, now have the confidence to succeed. Their success has provided a rare bright spot for a county blighted by economic woes. They have also been an economic generator for the Spanish Football Association who are not shy to cash in on their exalted status with lucrative friendlies and a bewildering number of sponsorship deals.
The Spanish national side has become like Spain's leading two club sides - available for hire to the biggest payers for friendly matches. The games are invariably away from home as hosts want to bring the biggest ticket in world football to town, like England did at Wembley. That comes at a cost.
Spain haven't yet become like Brazil, football's equivalent of the Harlem Globetrotters, who have played in Gabon and Egypt this week. Brazil use far more players too, because the status (and sale value) of a player is boosted if he's an international.
Spain haven't reached such levels of ridiculousness, but there's disquiet among the players and club managers and there was a heavy hint of sarcasm when goalkeeper Iker Casillas said after the defeat in London that he was only focusing on the game against Costa Rica.
Pep Guardiola stated that players "need a proper rest" through gritted teeth many times, so the friendly across the Atlantic last night won't go down well, but cash is king and the iron is very hot. He'd also be hypocritical to complain too much when Barca themselves readily take upwards of $1 million to play friendlies.
Barca's pre-season was interrupted last year because most of their squad went to Mexico to play for Spain. And just a week after they beat Manchester United at Wembley, the many Spanish internationals in their squad went to play friendly games in Venezuela and the US. It's hard to pity these millionaire superstar footballers, but they're only human and they need to rest too.
It's always toughest at the top, but how Spain got to the top is another issue. On Saturday, I cycled 120 kilometres around Barcelona, passing through numerous neighbourhoods, towns and villages on a glorious winter morning. Every single one boasted a football pitch with a new artificial surface. Every one was packed with youngsters from five upwards playing football. Thankfully, some of the riches are filtering down from the top and the federation helps fund pitches.
Seven of the Spain squad at Wembley grew up within 30 miles of each other in or around Barcelona. Is there a place on earth which produces so much top-quality football talent?
There are numerous reasons why. I spoke to the head of Blackburn Rovers' youth development recently and he said that Spain's favourable climate made a difference, citing that weeks and even months are lost to the weather in the British winter.
The climate and lack of water also makes grass pitches almost prohibitively expensive in most parts of Spain, so there's a greater demand for artificial surfaces which are almost all in constant use. Play for 10 hours a day on a grass pitch and it quickly wears out.
The Spanish kids are often coached by some of the 23,995 Spanish coaches who hold UEFA's B, A and Pro badges. Italy has 29,420 and Germany 34,790. England has just 2,769. The difference is staggering and what's even starker is that there are 2.25 million registered players in England against just 408,000 in Spain. Trained youth coaches in England will often say, privately, that even at some of the top clubs, the youngest kids are in the hands of substandard coaches.
Spain didn't get to the top of world football by a fluke in the same way that British track cycling didn't start dominating the podiums at the Olympics by happy accident. It came through investment and hard work in nurturing talent by proper qualified football coaches.
And as a result, Spain's technical superiority is there for all to see - even if it didn't quite work out like that on Saturday.