PREVIEW: Spain – Netherlands full size World Cup preview

MEDIA SERVICES – Infostrada Sports provides a 2014 World Cup media service for professionals. For all 64 World Cup matches in Brazil we produce full size match previews and reviews and a live feed with live facts & figures and an Q&A service.

Below you find the full size match preview for today’s Pool B match Spain – Netherlands, a replay of the 2010 World Cup final.

If you are interested in receiving full size match previews and reviews for all 64 World Cup matches, the 700-page World Cup Event Guide and the Live Facts & Figures media service, contact our Sales department at: or call +31 30 600 71 71

Spain – Netherlands (Salvador, 13 June)

> These teams have met on 10 previous occasions, Spain winning five, Holland four and one draw.
> Spain v Netherlands will be a repeat of the 2010 World Cup final, which Spain won after extra time via an Andrés Iniesta goal. It was Spain’s first WC and the third time Holland finished runners-up.
> For both teams, they will face the same opponents in their opening match of a WC as in their last match at the World Cup four years prior. This phenomenon applies to only two other teams: USA (v Ghana, 2010, 2014) and Republic of Ireland (v Italy, 1990, 1994).
> Spain have won three of their four competitive matches against the Dutch, including the first encounter at the 1920 Olympic Games and the last match, the World Cup final in 2010.
> The 2010 World Cup final was the first meeting between these two in a major tournament in 90 years. Spain beat Holland 3-1 in the Consolation Final at the 1920 Olympic Games. That was also the first international meeting between the two.
> In his first term as Holland coach, Louis van Gaal won a (friendly) match against Spain in 2000 (2-1).
> Xavi made his Spain debut in this match and Iker Casillas also played that day.
> When Van Gaal was FC Barcelona coach, he handed debuts to Xavi and Andrés Iniesta amongst others.
> As Real Madrid coach, Vicente del Bosque was unbeaten against Van Gaal in two Clásicos: 3-0, 0-0.
> Arjen Robben meets Bayern München teammate Javi Martínez and Robin van Persie will run into fellow Manchester United players David De Gea and Juan Mata.
> Netherlands do not have a winning track record against any of their Group B opponents at the 2014 World Cup. Those track records are: Spain (W4 D1 L5), Australia (W0 D2 L1) and Chile (W0 D1 L0).
> The Dutch will open their World Cup campaign at Salvador’s Arena Fonte Nova. Oranje played one previous match at this stadium. On 5 June 1999, they rallied from 2-0 down to salvage a 2-2 draw against Brazil in a friendly.

> Spain are hoping to become the first team to retain the World Cup since Brazil 52 years ago (1962). Italy (1934, 1938) is the only other side to win back-to-back World Cups.
> Spain are going to their 14th World Cup and 10th in succession. The last time they missed out on the Mundial was 1974.
> In 2010, Spain became the first European team to win the World Cup outside of Europe. No European team has ever won the World Cup in the Americas.
> Spain are already the only European side to win three major tournaments (WC and Euros) in a row and are attempting to make it four in Brazil. Italy won the WC in 1934 and 1938, West Germany won Euro 1972 and the 1974 World Cup and France won the 1998 World Cup and Euro 2000.
> Two of the last three WC titleholders have made their exit in the group phase, France in 2002 and Italy in 2010.
> Spain have won their last six World Cup matches. There have been only two longer winning streaks in World Cup history: 11 by Brazil from 2002 to 2006 and seven by Italy from 1934 to 1938.
> Spain have won their last four WC matches by exactly 1-0. This is already an all-time World Cup record for longest string of matches recording exactly the same result by one team.
> Spain failed to win their opening match at both the 2010 WC and at Euro 2012, but won both tournaments.
> Spain lost their first group match at the 2010 WC 1-0 to Switzerland, before winning their next six matches.
> They can equal Italy (1990) and Switzerland (2006-2010) in keeping a WC record five clean sheets in a row.
> Iker Casillas (434) needs 84 minutes to break Walter Zenga’s (517) record as goalkeeper keeping a clean sheet for most consecutive minutes at the World Cup.
> In their last 10 matches at WC and ECh, Spain have outscored their opponents 16-1. The one goal they conceded came in their group match against Italy at Euro 2012 and was scored by Antonio Di Natale.
> Spain boss Vicente Del Bosque has selected 16 world champions from 2010. This is the greatest number of World Cup winners returning in history. In 1962, Brazil returned 14 players from their 1958 campaign, which was the record before this World Cup.
> Nineteen of Spain’s 23 players have been selected to a WC and/or ECh, for a combined 61 previous selections.
> With seven players selected, FC Barcelona is once again the main provider for Spain’s World Cup squad. Barça saw as many players picked in 2010, when Spain won their first World Cup. Twice, the Catalans provided more players to a Spain World Cup side (9 in 1994 and 8 in 1998).
> This Spain squad contains their all-time leading appearance maker, Iker Casillas on 154, and their all-time leading goalscorer, David Villa on 58. Casillas is the most experienced international player among all 736 picked in a 2014 World Cup squad.
> Iker Casillas will be going to his eighth major tournament (WC and ECh). Only one European player has gone to more (9 by Germany’s Lothar Matthäus). Ever since Euro 2000, Casillas has always been at least part of Spain’s tournament squad. Italy’s Gianluigi Buffon will also be going to his eighth major tournament.
> Italy’s Vittorio Pozzo is the only coach that has won the World Cup twice (1934, 1938). In Brazil, Vicente Del Bosque and Brazil boss Luiz Felipe Scolari are attempting to win their second world title.
> In the nearly six-year tenure of Vicente Del Bosque as Spain boss the team has suffered only three defeats in competitive matches: a) 2-0 against United States in the semifinals of the 2009 Confederations Cup, b) 1-0 against Switzerland in Spain’s opener at the 2010 WC and c) 3-0 against Brazil in the final of the 2013 CC.

> This is Holland’s 10th World Cup participation. Their best WC result is finishing runners-up in 1974, 1978 and 2010. Only (West) Germany have lost more finals: 4 in 1966, 1982, 1986 and 2002.
> Twice, a team that finished runners-up in one World Cup went on to win the next World Cup. West Germany managed that in 1990 and Brazil did it in 2002.
> Netherlands have not lost their opening match at a World Cup in 76 years. In 1938, they were defeated 3-0 after extra time by Czechoslovakia.
> Netherlands are one of four teams that have taken part in more than one World Cup and have never gone out in the (first) group phase. The others are Germany, Republic of Ireland and Ghana.
> Netherlands have lost only two matches in the WC group stages. In 1978, they lost 3-2 to Scotland and in 1994 lost 1-0 to Belgium. Holland have played 27 matches before the knockout stages and is the only team in WC history to have played more than 10 of those whilst losing fewer than three.
> Holland lost the 2010 WC final and then lost all three of their matches at Euro 2012 to give them a losing streak of four in major competitions (WC, ECh). This is a record losing run for them.
> Netherlands have not lost back-to-back WC matches since losing in the last 16 in both 1934 and 1938.
> Five of the 14 players that played in the 2010 WC final return: Robin van Persie, Arjen Robben, Wesley Sneijder, Nigel de Jong and Dirk Kuyt. Michel Vorm and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar were unused subs.
> Arjen Robben and Wesley Sneijder have been selected to go to their sixth major tournament (WC and ECh). Only Edwin van der Sar and Aron Winter have been included in more Holland tournament squads (7). Van der Sar and Winter actually played in six of their seven invitations and Sneijder and Robben can equal that record.
> For the first time in 40 years, Feyenoord is the main provider for a Dutch World Cup squad, being represented by five players. In 1974, the Rotterdam side sent seven players.
> The Dutch squad is on average 26 years and 170 days old when the 2014 WC starts. It is the youngest Dutch World Cup squad in 76 years. Their 1938 ensemble was 25 years and 88 days old on average.
> Arjen Robben and Robin van Persie can become the first Dutchmen to score in three WCs. They both netted in 2006 and 2010.
> Wesley Sneijder (99 caps) can become Holland’s sixth centurion, behind Edwin van der Sar (130), Frank de Boer (112), Rafael van der Vaart (109), Giovanni van Bronckhorst (106) and Phillip Cocu (101). Van Bronckhorst and Cocu also won their 100th cap in a World Cup match and Van Bronckhorst did it in Holland’s opener against Denmark four years ago.
> Louis van Gaal will join Manchester United after this World Cup. He has won at least one domestic league title with each club side he has coached (Ajax, FC Barcelona, AZ and Bayern München).
> Netherlands qualified for the 2014 World Cup on 10 September 2013 and for the second World Cup in a row became the first team from Europe (UEFA) to punch their ticket.
> Robin van Persie’s 11 goals in WC 2014 qualifiers gave him a share of the worldwide lead with Uruguay’s Luis Suarez and Belize’s Deon McCauley.
> Van Persie is Netherlands’ all-time top scorer on 43 goals.

If you are interested in receiving full size match previews and reviews for all 64 World Cup matches, the 700-page World Cup Event Guide and the Live Facts & Figures media service contact our Sales department at: or call +31 30 600 71 71


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