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6/25/10

Chile versus Spain

Apart from a few snarkybits and quick references, this humble corner of cyberspace hasn't been too heavy on The World Cup so far. This has been deliberate, as there are a squillion different places to go if you want to be bored by some dumbass pontificating on the importance of it all.

But today we make an exception to preview a match coming up in five hours and forty-five minutes from now. Spain meet Chile in the last set of group matches and the basic story, assuming Switzerland beat Honduras....not a dead cert but let's just assume, is that Spain needs to win to go through at the expense of Chile, while Chile needs a win or a draw to send Spain home (one of the pre-tournament favourites). Both sides play attractive, quick, attacking football and won friends and plaudits in their qualifying games. Spain are the current European champions and really have a wonderful crop of players right now. Meanwhile, Chile have improved in leaps and bounds under the management of Marcelo Bielsa, who is for many people the best manager out there today.

Bottom line: The match today has the makings of an all-time classic. Now for sure footy fans will know very well that games rarely live up to this kind of billing....but all the same....you gotta watch this one because it might, just might be as good as that. And when it's played at its maximum expression there's no more beautiful game in the world than Association Football.

Update: It wasn't a classic, but at least Chile get through thanks to Honduras. It was also the first time this tournament that a South American team lost a match. So Portugal vs Spain and Brazil vs Chile in the last 16 round. This World Cup is now hotting up.