To keep out of trouble in the knock-out stages, the Oranje must place first in their group. In order to do so, they must make amends of their 2010 final loss and defeat Spain. Defeating Spain may be the toughest task in world football, but it can be done.

  • By Michael Doodeman
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ora v spIs the Spanish squad going to be at their best? Will they have the same hunger to fight for another world cup title as they did in 2010? In my opinion, this is the year Spain may not be at their strongest. Although they are ranked first in the world, there are a couple reasons as to why they may not be at their best, and why the Oranje can take them down:

They’ve won it all: La Roja have won the World Cup title and the European Cup title in the past four years. After winning two of football’s greatest honours, some might say it will make Spain hungrier, others might say they may already be satisfied and will not possess the same hunger as before. After winning the two major world football titles, having two Spanish teams in the UCL finals, and being considered the best of the best, the Spanish may just have too high expectations and confidence in this year’s campaign. The Dutch squad is looking to be as hungry as ever. It could likely be the veteran player’s: Sneijder, Van Persie, Huntelaar, Robben De Jong and Kuyt last major tournament. Amazingly, the Oranje after being in three World Cup finals, have never won it, making them all that much hungrier to hold the trophy. The team spirit is high, and all players seem focussed on contributing their best efforts to pursue their roles as starters, substitute’s etc and act as one, thanks to the management of Louis VanGaal and the leaders among the squad.

Spanish football is the same: The Spanish setup is similar to what it’s been for the past four years. With the same coach, Vincent del Bosque, similar players, and the exact same system of play, Spain may come across as predictable to opponents. As seen in European football the past year, Barcelona’s system has been tackled by opponents. The tiki-taka system was dominated by physical, quick and well organized opponents. Barcelona players have not lived up to their usual expectations in this past year, and with  a Spanish squad consisting of primarily Barcelona players, Spain may not be as strong as before. Holland may also have the upper hand in terms of system strategies. With one of the best football tacticians, Louis Van Gaal, managing the squad, the Dutch will fight Spain with well thought-out systems and strategies designed by the architect himself. With a recent system chance to a 5-3-2 and possibilities of  using a 4-3-3 or a 4-4-2, Louis VanGaal has options to surprise the Spanish and exploit their traditional method of play. With talent in the squad and such a brilliant manager, the Dutch certainly have the potential to defeat Spain.

The Dutch will need to top their group to increase their chances of lifting the trophy. If they come second in their group, they will almost definitely be seeing hosts Brazil in the first round of the knock out stages. As they did in 2010, the Dutch will need to work as a unit, and play their best football to have a chance at this year’s World Cup. With a mix of hungry young and experienced players, Louis VanGaal will utilize the squad’s strengths and generate a chance to defeat Spain once and for all.

Michael Doodeman (12 Posts)