After a disastrous opener against the Netherlands, Spain had a good chance to put the game behind them with a win over Chile. Chile got off to a winning start in their first game but were far from convincing against the lowest ranked team in the tournament, Australia. As with the opener, Spain started with Cesar Azpilicueta and Diego Costa. Cesc Fabregas and Fernando Torres could only make the bench after both coming on as substitutes in the previous game.
Chile started very brightly with lots of pace. Vidal charged into the box and eventually pulled it back into the six yard box, a goal mouth scramble followed, with the ball squirming out for a corner.
Costa went on a scampering run after a Diaz mistake, burst into the box and his blocked shot fell to Iniesta on the left hand side, he subsequently pulled it back to Alonso who had a close shot well saved by Claudio Bravo.
Xabi Alonso’s sloppy pass in midfield was intercepted well by Vidal, the Juve midfielder reversed it into the path of Alexis Sanchez, a good pass put in Arungiaz who nonchalantly back heeled it to Vargas, he cut inside and poked it past Casillas. It was a free flowing goal filled with composure and Chile took a deserved lead.
Diego Costa showed good hold up play after a ball in by Iniesta, Costa laid it off neatly to Alonso who hit a rushed shot way over the bar.
Costa had a half chance inside the box after a Silva flick on, the striker hit his shot into the ground hitting the side netting in the process.
Alexis Sanchez took an average free kick on the right hand side, Casillas got across easily but for some reason decided to tamely punch it straight back into the middle of the box instead of catching it, it fell to Aranguiz who poked it into the top right hand corner with a superb finish.
Chile went into the break with a deserved two nil lead.
Xabi Alonso was taken off at half time for his own good, it was easily the worst I’ve ever seen Alonso play, time will tell if that half was his last contribution at a major tournament for Spain. Spain started the second half much better but still couldn’t create a clear cut opportunity.
Iniesta was orchestrating proceedings as per usual however, no one seemed to be on his wave length. Spain had a good opportunity to get back into the game when a free kick on the edge of the Chilean box was taken by the prolific Sergio Ramos, but the defender could only hit it straight down Claudio Bravo’s throat. Costa put a wonderful acrobatic ball back into the box only for Sergio Busquets to put the ball wide from 5 yards.
After 63 minutes, Diego Costa was replaced by Fernando Torres.
Chile continued to look threatening on the break and Mena dragged a shot across the six yard box only for the arriving Isla to slide in and fail to convert form a tight angle.
Torres won a free kick late on, 30 yards from goal. Cazorla hit the free kick low but it was easily tipped round the post by the impressive Bravo. And that was it, Spain were dumped out of the World Cup after just two games of their defence. The end of an era?
Azpilicueta looked solid as always at right-back and didn’t disgrace himself one bit, he looked comfortable with Spain’s possession football but the unsettled centre-back pairing beside him meant he had to do a lot of their defending. As I said the last time I reported on Spain, Costa really isn’t looking match fit and if Chelsea are to complete the signing of him perhaps Spain going out early is the best thing for him and the club. A full preseason is vital if Costa is to be fresh for the coming season. It was shame not to see Cesc, perhaps both him and Torres will feature from the start against Australia given that Spain now have nothing but pride to play for.