Spain v Portugal World Cup 2010
June 29, 2010 - Kick off 19.30 GMT
It‘s true to say that Chile were on top during the first twenty minutes of Friday‘s match at Pretoria, although Marcelo Bielsa‘s team paid the price for such defensive naivety as Spain scored two quick goals to ensure they would be facing their Iberian neighbours and not Brazil. Vicente Del Bosque‘s team now look like the real deal and striker David Villa should finally cause problems for a Portuguese defence that hasn‘t conceded a goal in this World Cup. Andres Iniesta made a difference on the left side of midfield, although the manager might leave out Fernando Torres and play Jesus Navas on the wide right or Cesc Fabregas in the middle.
Portugal gave as good as they got against Brazil in the final Group G game, although they were arguably inferior to the Ivory Coast in their opening match and we shouldn‘t forget that they had big problems qualifying for the World Cup. Despite that 7-0 win over North Korea, there is possibly too much reliance on Cristiano Ronaldo to make things happen, with Raul Meireles and Tiago likely to have their hands full when it comes to stopping the Spanish fleet advancing into their half. There‘s also a lack of firepower and Spain will want to get this settled before the possibility of extra time and penalties rears its head.