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Spain's painful exit

Rashneel Kumar
Friday, June 20, 2014

S-PAIN-FUL

What a shocker!

The team many predicted to last the race in the 2014 FIFA World Cup was one of the first to get eliminated.

Spain dominated the global football scene for about six years after getting crowned the European champions in 2008.

Two years later, they won their first-ever World Cup title in South Africa before defending the European Championship title in 2012.

That unique tiki-taka football style the Spanish introduced drove them to become the global power in the sport.

Once its players find the rhythm, it turned out to be a nightmare for other teams. That's how good they became. Simply too hot to handle.

Until they tasted Chile.

All their flamboyance came to a halt yesterday when Spain was booted out of the World Cup by the Chileans in just the second round of the tournament.

Spain lost to Chile 0-2 to face an early exit alongside Australia which lost its second match to Netherlands 2-3.

After the Iker Casillas-skippered side lost to Holland 1-5 in the opening round of the group matches, team faithfuls remained calm and hoped the giant would rise from the drubbing to stun the world once again.

In the 2010 World Cup, Spain lost to Switzerland 0-1 in its opening match but went on to win the tournament. It also defeated Chile 2-1 in the group stage.

That was then, the rise of one of the best teams in football history.

Now, one of the biggest shocks in World Cup history

What happened to the team that probably has the best set of footballers playing for them?

I received an interesting email after the Spain versus Chile match from a colleague based in the West office.

She had attached a picture in that email indicating that was the reason for Spain's shock exit.

I thought it was some interesting fact that I could link up with my article.

It turned out to be the picture of pop star Justin Bieber with Spain jersey. Really? Is he that jinxed that the team he supports ends up losing? Maybe.

Technically, Spanish coach Vicente Del Bosque has been training the players on the same tiki-taka style for the past six years.

While other teams seemed to have found a way to contain Spain's stylish moves, Del Bosque failed to add to what they were already masters of to keep the opponents guessing.

From Casillas to striker Diego Costa, Spain was clueless of what was happening in Maracana. They looked shattered to bits in defence, midfield and upfront as the Chileans put the pre-tournament favourites to shame in the historic match.

Here's another interesting fact relating to Spain's demise.

The historic Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro has not been lucky for Spain.

In the 1950 World Cup, Spain lost to Brazil 1-6 and in the 2013 Confederations Cup final, they lost again to Brazil 0-3. Now, they have been eliminated from the World Cup.

Whatever the reasons are, this World Cup has become more exciting. In true sense, anything can happen in football.

Today's matches - 4am Colombia-Côte d'Ivoire, 7am Uruguay-England, 10am Japan-Greece





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