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FIFA World Cup 2014 Predictions: Match #3 Spain vs. Netherlands

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By Sounak Mukhopadhyay | June 11, 2014 10:11 AM EST

Final Score

Spain 1 Netherlands 5

REUTERS/Gary Cameron
Spain's Andres Iniesta (C) moves the ball against El Salvador defenders Andres Flores (L) and Kevin Santamaria (R) during the first half of their friendly soccer match in Landover, Maryland June 7, 2014.

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Overview

This is the first "clash of titans" at the FIFA World Cup 2014. The third match of the tournament is between Spain and the Netherlands. These two teams are not only the top teams in Group B but the top contenders for the cup as well. Spain and the Netherlands clashed in the final of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. This match is sure to be a cracker as it will decide the top team of the group. The no. 2 team is likely to play Brazil in the next round. Neither of the two may prefer facing Brazil so early in the tournament.

Teams

Spain: The number one team in the world as well as the champion of the 2010 FIFA World Cup and Euro 2010 - Spain starts the tournament as one of the favourites to win the cup this year as well. A truly star-studded team, it has arguably the best midfield in the world with players like Xavi, Xabi Alonso, Koke, Andrés Iniesta and Cesc Fàbregas. Coach Vicente del Bosque has high confidence for his striker Diego Costa. It defeated Italy in March in a friendly match. The team has been consistently performing well for many years now.

The Netherlands: The Netherlands will understand the importance of this match. There is practically nothing that can separate these two teams. This is another high profile with a galaxy of celebrity players in the team. Its road to the World Cup was an emphatic one. After leading striker Robin Van Persie had scored 11 goals in the qualifying rounds, the Dutch are also high in morale. The combination of Arjen Robben, Wesley Sneijder & Robin Van Persie is world class.

Head to Head

These two teams played against each other 9 times before. Both Spain and the Netherlands won 4 each while the other match ended in a draw. Spain scored 13 goals and conceded 10 against the Netherlands.

Key Players

Spain: Xavi, Xabi Alonso & Andres Iniesta

Netherlands: Arjen Robben, Wesley Sneijder & Robin Van Persie

Date, Time & Venue

Brazil's time zone is UTC/GMT -3. The match starts at 4 pm (local time) on June 13, which means it is 5 am on June 14 in New South Wales, Australia. The match will be held at Arena Fonte Nova in Salvador.

Prediction

The Spain-Netherlands match will end up in a draw. Even though there will be an interesting contest, neither team will emphasise on all-out attack as it is a group match anyway. Both will attack while keeping the fort secure. The predicted score is 1-1.

Group Predictions

Group A, Group B, Group C, Group D, Group E, Group F, Group G & Group H

Reference: FIFA

Contact the writer: s.mukhopadhyay@IBTimes.com.au

To contact the editor, e-mail:

(Photo: REUTERS/Gary Cameron / )
Spain's Andres Iniesta (C) moves the ball against El Salvador defenders Andres Flores (L) and Kevin Santamaria (R) during the first half of their friendly soccer match in Landover, Maryland June 7, 2014.
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