Shock results, epic comebacks, and stupid red cards… we had it all in Day 7 of the 2014 World Cup.
In what was a very exciting matchup between the two sides, Australia gave the Netherlands faithful a few scares as they fought the Oranje for 90 minutes before eventually succumbing.
Arjen Robben capitalised on a defensive mishap on the halfway line before he was released clean through, making his trademark run and slotting the ball into the back of the net.
However, the Australians were not going to give up that easily and it wasn’t long before Ryan McGowen produced an inch perfect cross into the path of Tim Cahill, who scored one of the best goals in World Cup history, less than a minute after Robben’s first strike.
Nine minutes into the second half Daryl Janmaat handled the ball in the box to award a penalty to the Australians in which captain Mile Jedinak calmly converted to make it 2-1. Just as Cahill swiftly pegged back the Dutch, Robin van Persie stepped up to the plate to score the equaliser four minutes later before substitute Memphis Depay rescued the Oranje with a long shot that Mat Ryan couldn’t keep out.
After suffering the worst loss by a defending World Cup champion, many were expecting Spain to bounce back against a very competent Chile side. The earlier win for the Netherlands also meant that Spain could not lose, or else go home.
But the Spaniards weren’t able to lift themselves out of their misery, as Chile scored the first with a beautiful passage of counter-attacking play.
Arturo Vidal started the move before it was coolly finished by Eduardo Vargas, putting Chile on the front foot.
The second goal came in the 42nd minute, when a Sanchez free-kick was poorly punched out by Iker Casillas straight into the path of Aranguiz, who toe-poked the ball into the net.
Spain piled on the pressure in the second half but apart from their possession, really had nothing to show for their efforts.
The last game of the round saw the two losers in Group A battle each other out in what many perceived would be a tight affair. It wasn’t.
Croatia went into an early 10th minute lead through Ivica Olic, which Croatia held until half time.
But it was an incident before the break that ended Cameroon’s hopes, as Alex Song – irritated by being blocked during a counter attack – swung his arm into the back of Mario Mandzukic and received a straight red card.
From then on it was easy going, as Ivan Perisic scored in the 47th and Mandzukic added two more in the 61st and 72nd minutes.
Cameroon thus follow Spain and Australia out of the 2014 World Cup.