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And now, the end is near, and so I (they) face the final curtain (perhaps). It’s crunch time for Spain. Having already successfully proved that they’re not quite a match for a Netherlands side who Australia just gave a hell of a game, they face Chile knowing that a defeat will see the reigning champions depart in the first round. This is a move that France pioneered in 2002 and one which La Roja will be very keen not to repeat. Accentuating the positives, though, Spain have already scored more goals than France did on that occasion.
Their opponents, Chile, are enjoying quite a purple patch of form. They played out an exciting 3-1 win over the Socceroos in the first match and will be fired up by the prospect of going toe-to-toe with the world champions. Moreso after last Friday, of course, but they’re only human. They will also perhaps be heartened to see that Vicente Del Bosque has rung the changes in the Spain team. Pique and Xavi both miss out, a fact simply bound to be a win or bust strategy.
Terry Duffelen and, god help you, Ted Carter are your guides to this pivotal game.
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Spain out before Iran, as someone noted earlier. A bit like 2001 when Man United went out of the FA Cup before Kingstonian. No? Not even a little bit?
Chile will play the Netherlands next week to decide who tops the group. Watch out for Brazil conspiring to finish second in their group and really mess up someone’s tactical decision to rest key players.
So there we have it. The end of an era. But rather than bury Spain let’s praise Chile. An almost faultless performance.
FULL TIME: and a thoroughly well deserved 2-0 win for Chile, who were magnificent. I had a sneaking feeling they’d do it and Spain offered no meaningful resistance. It’s a rather limp end to a magnificent era, but the black and white truth is, Spain are out of the World Cup. Ouch.
Diego Costa looks like a man thinking, “…. nah, it’s probably too late to ask”
The officials respect the departing World Champions by eking out ever every last second of injury time. Six minutes.
The fourth official has indicated that there’ll be a minimum of ∞ minutes additional time
At this point, Spain are at least only in need of chucking in three floaters during stoppage time, so they’re at least doing better than the last match.
Another Spanish set piece comes to nought. Chile are nearly there and the eulogies for Spain can begin. First up, a 60,000 word recantation from Sid Lowe.
It’s the stage in the game where the Chilean management is more concerned with whether or not that grass stain will come out of Francisco Silva’s shirt on the first wash rather than anything more pressing.
A scoop of Vanish in with your normal detergent should do the trick.
“Good foul!” says Danny Murphy. I love this guy.
Bravo makes a decent save from a long rang shot from Iniesta. It looks like Chile may be over the hump somewhat but these are nervous times. If you want Chile to win.
Vicente Del Bosque looks like a man who has run out of ideas. He reminds me a little of Nicolae Ceausescu making his last speech on that balcony.
I can only hope that Del Bosque receives more measured treatment.
Claudio Bravo makes a majestic save from Iniesta. That’s about the one he’s had to make this second half.
BREAKING NEWS: there are now Spain supporters not waving at the TV camera. This is serious.
Spain’s supporters look distraught. Well, until they see themselves on the telly. I always feel it’s when they stop waving at the TV cameras that you can really relate to their pain.
Meanwhile, Chile are not taking their chances to kill the game. I remain impressed that Wilson and Murphy have yet to mention that 2-0 is a dangerous scoreline.
Danny ‘say it as it is’ Murphy
Ramos leaves his studs on Vargas in ‘did I do that?’ kind of way.
Vidal may have to come off soon as he’s still recovering from his knee injury.
The BBC have really spoilt us today with this commentary team, by the way. Is it possible to just fly Steve Wilson and Danny Murphy around all of the rest of the venues?
Isla fails to convert the cross and is down injured while play continues.
Spain’s initial zest in this second half seems to have evaporated somewhat. Chile nearly punish it, but Isla is not quite the finisher that Vargas is on his arse.
“It’s just a flesh wound” he said as he hopped off the pitch, leg in hand.
Aranguiz is also off, having finally given in to his injury. Though it was but a scratch.
Iker Casillas just hasn’t held the ball first time. Always letting go of it and having to recover.
All the broo ha ha surrounding Diego Costa’s conversion to Spain has backfired because of his injury. Now they turn to Torres.
Diego Costa just isn’t being his usual physical self; too many times being pushed off the ball.
Favourite Coffee Shop: Costa
I’d hazard a guess that Diego Costa will be the player who comes off. He’s stunk the place out.
Spain’s problems are soon to be at an end, as Fernando Torres prepares to enter the fray.
No, don’t laugh. Oh, missus.
Aranguiz’s fitness coach is the Black Knight from Monty Python’s The Holy Grail, if Danny Murphy’s assessment is anything to go by.
Aránguiz copped one in the knee and has been stretchered off. But, tough hombre that he is, he’s trying to run it off.
And everyone’s got their shovels out for Spain. It would be a nuisance to have them put them away,
Chile are playing such a dangerous game, sitting back like this. It’s not what they’re good at and not what got them into this position in the first place. Besides, 2-2 would be a lot less ribald than 2-0.
Good grief. Another goalkeeper punch, this time by Chile, creates havoc but Busquets flaps it wide. Sergi Busquets. Favourite food: biscuits.
That Costa overhead was the best Spanish cross all game.
Oh my goodness! Busquets misses an absolute sitter.
But will he be nailing them for Chelsea next season? Somewhere on the Algarve, Jose Mourinho is grinding his teeth down to a powder.
Costa meanwhile misses the kind of chance he’d have nailed for Atleti.
I could spend all half on shit Koke puns, but more important things are afoot: Diego Costa missed again. Chile adopting a defensive approach is dangerous, I think. Spain will find a way through.
Looks like Chile are going to defend for their lives. I would say that they are about to be besieged but I’m trying to cut down on my military metaphors.
Koke’s favourite dance?
SECOND HALF IS IMMINENT and amazingly, Spain have made a substitution. It’s Koke! Favourite soft drink: coke.
Koke is coming on for Spain in place of… Xabi Alonso who is redundant given the score.
Real Madrid are having a right junkleclunks of a tournament, aren’t they? Franco will be turning in his grave.
Rewatching Chile’s opening goal really does emphasise what a terrific move it was. There’s no shame in losing to a team who are playing like that, it’s just a bit surprising that it’s Spain that are doing it.
starring Joan Collins (this joke works best when said out loud)
Half time. We are 45 minutes away from the rapid fall of a dynasty. Fortunately, Dallas will be back later in the year.
HALF TIME at the Maracana. Chile lead 2-0 and have one foot in the second round. I forget who they’re playing.
Blimus. Spain in need of half time.
Spain do now seem to be knackered. Casillas chooses to punch a free kick away. He does so straight back to the feet of Charles Aranguiz who lashes it back from whence it came. 2-0 to Chile. Desperate times for Spain, who are being outplayed.
Aránguiz with a crazy goal catching the ball on the rebound from the hapless Cassillas.
Chile have a wonderful hustle and bustle about them that I really enjoy watching. They play like England ought to.
I take it back. These long balls forward from the Spanish defenders are all sorts of rubbish.
I think too much Tiki Taka brings more players forward than Spain would like. Especially when Chile have such pace going forward.
Tiki taka, when done right, should be plan A, B and C. It’s just that Spain aren’t playing that well. A bit like Bayern after they won the Bundesliga in March.
Works for the Netherlands!
Is it possible that the source of all of Spain’s powers was in their blue shorts?
Plan B is ‘take more time’
The Spanish line of thought here seems to be: tiki taka. When that doesn’t work and, worse, they go a goal down and need to get back into the match to stay in the tournament they tiki taka harder.
We all got very carried away for Raheem Stirling’s on Saturday. Not so much for Wayne Rooney’s but that could just be because we knew full well that he never scores in the World Cup.
Is it me or do side netting misses look more like goals in this World Cup?
David Silva plays Diego Costa through and he scores a Jonathan Pearce three-nil special, straight into the side netting.
Alexis Sanchez was making such florid protestations about use of the elbow to the referee that he nearly elbowed his own teammate in the face. Which would, I think it is safe to say, have been the funniest thing in history.
And suddenly Spain look out of step. I’m sure it’s just perception based on the scoreline but it requires some serious steel for the champs to turn this around.
Xabi Alonso’s beard is disconcertingly dissimilar to the colour of his head hair.
Or at least play with one who’s 100%. Costa looked so off the pace against the Dutch. Although he appears to be moving around tonight.
The camera is lurking around Iker Casillas to see if he cries but there was nothing he could have done about that one, Vargas’ first touch completely wrong-footed everyone.
This may show me up to be a typically English tactical Luddite BUT… sometimes I wonder whether or not this whole “one striker” thing is necessarily ALWAYS the best idea. Spain ought to stick another one on and see what happens.
Blimey, I’ve just tuned in… seems like I may have missed a good 20 minutes. Why does that always happen!?
We have a goal from Vargas. 1-0 Chile. Aránguiz calmly passes to Vargas who did the goal.
Chile done a goal!
I’m also bathing in Danny Murphy’s analysis.
It’s a good game, though. Chile just need to start testing Casillas’ resolve; Diego Costa just needs to start playing like David Villa circa 2008.
Diego Costa delays his shot then stands unmarked at the far post while he team mates studiously ignore him.
Adherence to a philosophy that has built them an empire or pragmatism, that is the question. Particularly if one owns a thesaurus.
Spain seem pretty determined to play the ball through the middle of the Chilean defence rather than take to the flanks, although the average height of the Chile team is marginally below that of The Lollipop Guild.
So far there are lots of nice moves from lots of really good players but beyond the nearly own goal there’s not been much in the way of goal mouth live blog fodder.
What Iker Casillas needs in the first half are a few nice touches, maybe a comfortable save to make, and for Spain to score three goals.
Already, ALREADY Danny Murphy has added more to World Cup co-commentary than Lawrenson and Savage combined. SURELY someone at the Beeb has got to notice.
I’m a paste into word man, too. Right, enough of me. Not my show…
I paste my line ups into a text document. At least I did until now.
Team news: when I live blog these games, I have the Google search page open in another tab, as it provides an at-a-glance guide to the teams and main match events and their timings. Also, they reveal that Cezar Azpilicueta’s name for the rest of time will be Dave.
Sergio Ramos – undroppable. I hope Spain are toast for that reason alone.
An exciting development in anthem singing, this “a capella version of additional verses” thing. I’m hoping England go for a few tomorrow night. Maybe each player could take a verse as a solo.
You’d think the Spanish would cheer up a bit. They did, after all, win the ‘who get’s to wear red’ toss..
Ahoy ‘hoy. Just finished watching the Holland v Australia game on the old +1. What a game that was.
I always love to hear the Spanish supporters singing the Spanish National Anthem with such gusto, not least as La Marcha Real in fact has no words.
What I like the most about this World Cup so far is that has represented everything that a World Cup should: thrashings, comebacks, excitement, boredom, indiscipline, brilliance and absolutely CATASTROPHIC goalkeeping errors.
He chucked in a floater.
Got a feeling that rumours of Spain’s imminent decline have been vastly, vastly overblown over the last few days. Surprised at Xavi being left out, though. I’ll certainly be keeping a very close eye on Iker Casilla’s little face the first time the ball goes anywhere near him at any sort of pace. If we see the metaphorical whites of his eyes, Spain could have a problem this evening.
(Didn’t he chuck one in during the Champions League final, too?)
There’s a couple or three surprises in the Spanish line-up for this evening. I feel that Xavi is going to feel a little hard done by when he considers the fact that he’s not playing and Iker Casillas is. However, the Spain captain retains his place and Pepe Reina retains his proud record of two European and one World Championship winner’s medal, zero minutes played.
Ahoy, sports fans. It’s go time. If nothing else, Spain need to do it for Iniesta whose hairline – normally at worst respectfully thinning – looks desperately bedraggled in defeat.