The Netherlands have progressed to the second round of the 2014 World Cup with a perfect record of three wins from as many games after defeating Chile 2-0 at Arena de Sao Paulo this morning.
The Netherlands and Chile both had plenty to play for in their final pool game, with the winner set to avoid a clash with Brazil in the second round, but it was Chile that took the attack to their opponents in the early stages of the match, while the Dutch were happy to see back and hit Chile on the counter attack.
Chile were unable to breakdown the Dutch defense in the first half, creating few chances, and it was The Netherlands that looked the most likely to take the lead; with Arjen Robben setting up opportunities for both Stefan de Vrij and Wesley Sneijder from fast breaks.
Chile Coach Jorge Sampaoli was forced to push players forwards as his side chased the three points in the second half and that left holes in their defense, which allowed Leroy Fer to put the Dutch in front in the 77th minute before Memphis Depay secured victory for The Netherlands with a late goal.
Despite the victory some members of the media were critical of the defensive way in which Louis van Gaal set up his side, but the Netherlands manager made no apologies for his tactics and said he was simply happy to win the football game.
“Could you give a definition of attacking football,” Van Gaal said at the post match press conference.
“If you look at my CV you will know I win a lot of matches.
“Chile always give away more space in the last 15 minutes and we analysed that in Chile.
“The cleverest team won the match.”
Sampaoli said that his side went into the game chasing a victory and looking to play attacking and attractive football, but were thwarted in their efforts by the defensive mindset, which The Netherlands took into the game.
“We had the idea of winning,” Sampaoli said.
“That’s why we gave our all but could not find a solution to a team that only defended and only aspired to have long strikes and not counter-attacks.”
Netherlands will take on Mexico in their 2014 World Cup second round clash at Estadio Castelao on June 29, while Chile face a tough assignment against Brazil at Estadio Mineirao on June 28.
Chile are now available at a quote of $26 to win the 2014 World Cup with Ladbrokes.com.au, while Netherlands has been back into odds of $9 following their third straight victory.