Spain were sent crashing out of the World Cup June 18 following an uninspired performance that le
Spain were sent crashing out of the World Cup June 18 following an uninspired performance that lead to a second defeat in Group B. On June 13, Spain were thrashed 5-1 by a rampant Holland who were spear-headed by an invigorated Robin van Persie and Arjen Robben.
In the first twenty minutes of that match, Spain were cruising but they weren’t cruising the victory—they were on autopilot and stuck in the same gear, barely able to get started. As soon as they took the lead through a penalty, they just stopped working and allowed Holland to walk all over and bully them.
Before they faced Chile, they should have regrouped and worked on the mistakes that cost them so dearly and although we don’t know what went on in training, it certainly didn’t look like they’d worked on much.
An end of an era
Chile were rampant throughout and in all fairness to them, they should have had more than two goals past the defending champions. Even towards the end of the match when the stakes of losing had appeared to hit Spain, Chile parked the bus at the back and chances were few and far between.
This game is now being seen as an end-of-an-era for Spain as their dominance at the top of world football appears to have come to a crashing end.
In the past couple of years, we have seen the kings of tika-taka start to lose focus and lose connection with themselves as a team; playing in a way that makes them unrecognisable to the teams that won Euro 2008, World Cup in 2010 and the European championships in 2012.
In the last World Cup back in 2010, Spain only conceded two goals throughout the entire tournament. Now, they’re out in the group stages having conceded seven and only scored one which signals an unprecedented demise.
Of course, Spain are not in an elite club of being knocked out in the first round as holders. In three of the past four World Cups, the holders have seen themselves fall at the first hurdle.
A curse of the cup? It would appear so.
They have a side whose names alone are enough to strike fear in any opposition with many of the players coming from European heavyweights such as Barcelona and Real Madrid but even the major Spanish clubs have been poor of late, especially Barcelona so this may have been a contributing factor to this disaster.
Where can they go from here? Well they need to accept their failures and move forward. They need to learn how to adapt to their playing style again and how to move onto a new generation of players. 7 members of this World Cup squad were in the team that was sent to Germany back in 2006 and although this worked for them four years ago in South Africa they legs on players such as Iker Casillas are too old and too tired to carry for much longer.
Even Xabi Alonso, a player renowned for dominating the midfield of any game, was letting loose passes fall to the feet of Holland and Chile and allowing them to capitalise on it and get the results that Spain so desperately required. Performances like this are simply not good enough for a team who has dominated world football for so long.
What do you think? Were you surprised by Spain’s performance? Have your say in the comments section below.