Holland 2-0 Chile
With Robin Van Persie absent due to suspension, an interesting statistic was revealed prior to kick-off in Sao Paulo
After a goalless first half, the Netherlands took the lead, capitalising on Chile’s one area of weakness—defending set-pieces. Leroy Fer, who had only just been introduced as a substitute for Wesley Sneijder, took full advantage of a defensive mix-up by the Chileans to score an uncontested header for Holland.
The goal to seal the match was an exemplary Dutch counter-attack. One of the best players so far in 2014, Arjen Robben, once again demonstrated his pace and this time selflessness to cross for Memphis Depay, who sealed the win and top spot in Group B.
The manner of the win shows Louis Van Gaal’s vast array of resources within this talented Dutch squad and they will now face the runners-up in Group A.
Meanwhile Chile will take on the Group A winners.
Spain 3-0 Australia
Both sides were playing to avoid the wooden spoon in Group B. Vicente Del Bosque rung the chances in the La Roja line-up with Iker Casillas being the biggest casualty.
He also opted for a dual partnership up front, in Fernando Torres and David Villa, and the latter commenced the scoring with an improvised finish—apt for his 59th international goal in his 97th and last Spanish cap.
Andres Iniesta continued to dissect the Australian defence and his incisive pass resulted in Fernando Torres’ first goal of the tournament.
Cesc Fabregas and Juan Mata combined for Spain’s third as the Manchester United midfielder completed the scoring, salvaging some pride for La Roja but the world champions will still fly home to an inquest of epic proportions.
– Mexico vs Brazil on Saturday 28th June
– Holland vs Chile on Sunday 29th June