Top Stories

Chile victory knocks Spain out of World Cup



They say all good things must come to an end and, in the case of the 2010 World Cup champions, it ended more quickly and painfully than anyone could have predicted.

Spain’s reign of dominance has come to its end as La Roja were defeated 2-0 by Chile Wednesday at Estadio do Maracana in Rio de Jainero. The reigning champions now find themselves among the tournament’s early exits having been eliminated after just two games. Spain is also the first defending champion to be eliminated with one group stage match still remaining.

It took Chile just 19 minutes to open the scoring via Eduardo Vargas, whose surging run through the left side of the box was found by Charles Aranguiz from the opposite side. Aranguiz slid the ball to an open Vargas, who took a touch before firing past a helpless Iker Casillas.

Chile doubled La Roja’s misery in the 43rd minute by way of a rebound finish by Aranguiz. Alexis Sanchez’s free kick was parried back towards the penalty spot by the much-criticized Casillas. Aranguiz found himself right in the way of the Spaniard’s punch, and he made no mistake in doubling his country’s lead from close range.

It was an uncharacteristic performance once again from the Spaniards, who turned the ball over repeatedly despite the team’s tiki-taka philosophy that places so much emphasis on taking care of the ball.

On the defensive end, Aranguiz’s finish marked the seventh consecutive goal conceded by the Spaniards, who conceded five to the Netherlands last week following Xabi Alonso’s opener. La Roja only conceded twice in the entire 2010 World Cup.

Spain’s failure to score mathematically eliminates them in the group stage after scoring just a single a penalty kick in two matches.

With the victory, Chile confirms its place in the knockout stages, where it will join the Netherlands. The two qualifying teams will meet Monday to determine the group winner, while Spain will concurrently play their 2014 World Cup sendoff against Australia.


  1. Chile high pressured them with great stuff from Sampaoli, knew exactly how he wanted to attack that team and they did it to them, made them look old and slow and sped up to a tempo they didn’t want. really crushed them on D and pressured them into mistakes. no fear of Spain to hurt them either with Costa the ‘threat’ on the break on the rare occasions Spain broke through the high press effectively, so the high pressure even that much more effective

  2. MOM- Mark Geiger, seriously I never in a million years thought I would be saying this but he actually is having a very good World Cup. He did great in the first game and I thought he managed this one well. It easily could have gotten really out of hand.

    Doing MLS proud.

    Still can’t believe I’m praising the guy.

    • Agreed. Thought he managed the game very well and there could be no serious complaints about his decisions.

  3. so from 2008-2012′

    SPAIN was the beat team in the world

    the only teams to beat them in that time was..

    USA, Switzerland and Portugal

    any other nations or am I wrong? All eras end. The new generation of SPAIN has the talent but not the leadership to win anymore.

    • It wasn’t in 2012, but Argentina beat them in 2011, right after the WC win. It was close to a full strength squad.

  4. Vamos Chile! A win against holland and they’ll get Mexico or Bosnia. I hope it’s Mexico so they can pummel them too. What a huge win.

  5. Chi Chi Chi! Le Le Le!

    Somewhat of a tangent, but for all the “tiki taka” is dead talk: fine, maybe that silly phrase is dead (thank you).

    But it was *not* close control and intricate passing in a possession system that “failed.” What lost was a team of ageing stars who lacked the grit, focus, and Puyol necessary to win a game at the World Cup. Total football is still a fine idea, will work great at any level where it’s taught well and executed by people with a full heart and rested legs.

    • * total football v tiki-taka: I know there is technically a difference, but they’re commonly used interchangeably, hence the “slip”

  6. Casillas and Costas get to share the Least Valuable Player award.
    Though there wasn’t a chance that they’d start again today.

    • let’s be honest, costa’s been pretty recent that he started playing good futbol, he doesn’t have much history. I was a bit surprised that spain put pretty much all of their hopes on him. personally i would of started torres and brought costa of the bench until he showed something with the national team. the times i’ve seen him play with spain (3-4 times?) he hasn’t seem like he fit quite right.

      • Can’t believe Fabregas didn’t even get on the field today. Playing him instead of a striker has always worked well for them.

      • agree. although spain to me didn’t look to interested from the get go. seemed like the whooping against holland nocked the wind out of them.

    • Man I’m wondering what the Spanish fans are saying about Costas. If he was American there wouldn’t be a server big enough to contain the amount of hate and bashing that are going to be written on American soccer boards.

    • Usually these things go in clumps. Last World Cup, neighbors Italy and France were competing hard to see who could reek worse; the French won by a nose.

      The Spaniards lost their first two games by a combined score of 7-1, but they have no red cards and they at least took it quietly; nobody’s punched a puppy in the face or kicked an elderly woman on the sidelines yet.

      Portugal, on the other hand, has only allowed an 0-4 scoreline through one game, but they do have one disgraceful red card and you’d think at least one of their loose cannons – I have my eye on Meirelles – should be good for an International incident before it’s over, so the Trophy for World Cup Disgrace is hardly decided yet, and I have faith the Portugese are still strong candidates to win it.

      • Maybe if Mourinho was coaching the team. I expected tough match, but no crazy stuff. Playing a man down to Germany is a little different than playing even with Netherlands. Plus had a soft penalty called against them according to Roberto Martinez, and should’ve gotten a penalty that the ref didn’t give them. By the way, Spain’s Brazilian born Costa head butted similarly and got away without the referee seen or a red card. Portugal’s defense can be tough as nails when they don’t have an idiot goalkeeping and a moron center back believes the team playing with 10 men.

    • I highly doubt that game will be boring, games where little is on the line at the WC are usually wide open entertaining games.

      • Or violent…two frustrated teams with nothing to lose. I’d be shocked if the game ended without a red card.

      • I agree, reignman. Australia have a lot to gain. Though, without Cahill, it will be less exciting.

Leave a Comment