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Australia vs Netherlands

World Cup Finals 2014 - Group Stage, Match 2
Australia vs Netherlands
at Estadio Beira-Rio, Porto Alegre, Brazil on 2014-06-18T03:00:00
Score: 2-3 (1-1)
Scorers: Tim Cahill (21'), Mile Jedinak (54')
Official Info: FIFA Details
Previous Match: Chile vs Australia
Next Match: Australia vs Spain

None of the hesitancy of our previous match was present and we started well. Tactically we were superior, forcing many errors and getting on top over the first 20 minutes. And then a tiny error and Robben was away and finished clinically. For mine our defender might have blocked the shot and our keeper might have saved, but it was a close run thing. Then scarcely a minute later Tim Cahill scored a wonderful goal - a left foot volley that crashed into the top of the net. It was breath-taking, possibly his best ever and will probably be one of the goals of the tournament. The half remained scoreless after that, with Australia having the better of it.

The second half saw the Dutch change their formation and they were much more in the game after that. We continued to attack and won a penalty (for handball). Jedinak did the honours and we were in front. It was simply extraordinary. The Dutch weren't giving up though and soon equalised. Van Persie with a great finish, but our left back did the Dutch a huge favour by keeping him onside. We continued to push forward and create chances. The turning point was a wasted chance where we should have scored. The Dutch scored from the ensuing counter-attack, with Ryan partly at fault, and from there it was all over.

Along the way, Tim Cahill picked up his second card from the tournament and will miss the next game, bringing his World Cup career to an end. His goal will live on in memory. Also along the way, Van Persie didn't pick up a second yellow card for the match. Lucky, for mine. The score was 2-2 at the time.

The Dutch had never beaten us until today and it took a wonderful game and their polish in front of goal to pull it off. Australia has been widely praised all round and we can be proud of our effort. In the end though, the "one percent-ers" cost us. We will rue our errors that lead to goals conceded or missed chances.

Meanwhile, Chile did the unthinkable and eliminated Spain form the finals after just two games with a 2-0 win. The Netherlands vs Chile should be a cracker as both will want to win to avoid Brazil (assuming they top Group A). Spain and Australia will be playing for pride, but who knows we may take something from this game. It will be tough though without Cahill - the scorer of our only goals in open play.