SPAIN 1 – 5 NETHERLANDS
“SPAIN WERE “ROBBENED“. No, that’s not a typo. I’m saying Robbened instead of robbed because both Robin (Van Persie) and (Arjen) Robben destroyed Spain today. Their teamwork and two goals each put to rest a Spanish team that had been predicted to win all games in their group. The World Cup proves to be as unpredictable as always. Anything can happen!
From the start, Spain looked quite strong. The first half hour was dominated by the Spanish and I was cheering Xabi Alonso on as he scored the first goal of the game, a penalty. There was no injustice about the decision to award the penalty, it was a clear foul inside the box.
The Dutch had no right to object and (Champions League Winner) Alonso slotted home with confidence as he gave Spain the lead. Van Persie would start the emphatic comeback for the Netherlands with a superb diving header that sailed over the goalkeeper who had come off his goal line. The game would be 1-1 at half time and the second half. Well, that would be less equal than the first.
Once Van Gaal’s half time team talk was over (I wonder what he said), Arjen Robben took the first chance he got to score and finished with precision as the goalkeeper was caught off his line (again) and he curled it around him and into the net.Spain may still have thought they could equalize at this point but it was only going to get worse for them!
Wesley Sneijder would take a free kick and then De Vrij would slot home the rebound from close range as the lead was increased once more. The Netherlands never seem satisfied with the amount of goals they had and kept looking for opportunities to get one more goal. Attack after attack would see the Spain goalkeeper tested again and again and I was wondering if Casillas should be replaced with Reina, just to see if Reina could keep a cleaner sheet than the Real Madrid goalkeeper who was having trouble from several players who would not give him an easy time.
The Spanish did at one point have some very promising attacks of their own in the second half, with a goal being called offside (on closer inspection of the replay, it WAS offside: a good call by the linesman). I felt sorry for the Spanish as they got denied even one more goal, while their opponents were running riot, scoring at will.
Robben would score the final goal of the game late on, not long after Van Persie had decided he wanted a second and even the late substitution of Fernanado Torres would make no difference to the scoreline as the Netherlands got their first win of the tournament.
KEY PLAYERS: Robin and Robben. both got a double taste of World Cup scoring action in a comeback which would make sure the Spanish did not get any points today.
Xabi Alonso did great in the first half and was cool as ice as he scored Spain’s only goal from the penalty spot. I’d hand him the ball again if there is a shoot out, or random foul inside the box. He can take a very good penalty.
Writer: Stuart Drewery
I’m an Englishman (born and raised in Liverpool in the 80s). My whole family including my parents and grandparents were Liverpool fans so I was born into being a red. I’ve seen Liverpool win the league (about 25 years ago) and I’ve been 100% loyal and committed while supporting the Reds through all the good times AND the bad times since the 80s.
I’m a die hard Liverpool fan (only supported ONE club in my whole life, Liverpool) and one of the most dedicated fans you’ll ever meet.