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June 13, 2014
• Arena Pantanal, Cuiabá, Mato Grosso
Referee: N. Doue
• Attendance: 40275
A. Sánchez 12'
J. Valdivia 14'
J. Beausejour 90'+
T. Cahill 35'
That's it from me, it's been a pleasure! See you soon.
Bravo then kept Chile in the game with one or two choice saves, before Beausejour came off the bench to ice the game in stoppage time. Chile join the Netherlands as Group B victors after the latter's 5-1 win over Spain, with Sampaoli's men moving second on goal difference.
Australia battled hard and came close to claiming a credible point, but Chile simply had more in reserve in the end. After a rapidfire first half double from Sanchez and Vargas, la Roja were in dreamland, but Cahill's towering header brought them back down to earth.
90' + 4'
And that's all she wrote! Chile have the victory!
90' + 3'
Well that has rather ended the Australian comeback hopes in a hurry. It's hardly an unceremonious end to the game though, as the fireworks, quite literally, boom around the stadium.
90' + 2'
The two substitutes come up with the goods! The ball initially broke to Pinilla on the left hand side. His close range shot was well closed down by Ryan, but Beausejour struck the rebound sweet as a nut from 20 yards, burying it into the bottom corner!
90' + 2'
THAT'S IT! BEAUSEJOUR WRAPS IT UP!
Four minutes of added time now signaled by Roberto Moreno on the sidelines. Given that Chile scored twice in half that time, and Australia were within a Bravo shin of repeating that same feat, I'd say that's a useable chunk of time for the Aussies!
A lovely clip over the top from Pinilla is aimed towards Beausejour. The linesman's flag stays down as he chases down the ball, but he loses the footrace to Ryan, who comes off his line to smother.
NO PENALTY! Cahill bursts into the penalty area trying to latch onto a hopeful pass, but he's never in stride with the ball and loses his balance. The Socceroos fans' baying fails to will the referee into calling the spot kick.
Eduardo Vargas is given a breather for the last few minutes, and on comes the journeyman Pinilla, who has had spells with a dozen clubs in seven different nations during a nomadic career.
Yellow CardC. Aránguiz
Aranguiz has been enticing to watch bursting from midfield, but he takes a step too far for the referee's liking, collecting a booking for a untidy foul on Halloran. Only the first booking for Chile, compared the three for Australia.
Sanchez with a clever reverse pass to match the diagonal run of Vargas across the face of goal. However, Spiranovic is in hot pursuit, so the Napoli man doesn't have the space that he would have wanted to turn and shoot. Chile play it conservatively.
The fourth official Roberto Moreno just heading over to the Chile bench to quell a few unruly fires. Well, only one in truth. No surprise to see Valdivia as the man subjected to the lecture.
Perhaps that slow start from Australia may end up as their undoing. Chile haven't been nearly as dangerous since the restart, and have cheated death once with Bravo's world class double save on Bresciano.
Time is really starting to turn away from the Aussies now. They've shown more than enough in the second half to warrant something from this game, something more than they're poised to get.
Beausejour uses all the speed at his disposal to accelerate past Leckie on the right who, after a game racing up and down the flanks, simply cannot keep up. The Chile sub has shooting position, but Spiranovic blocks his shot!
Another Australia sub, their third and final change. Off goes the veteran midfielder Bresciano, replaced by 25-year-old James Troisi. All cards played by the Socceroos now.
Halloran goes one on one with Isla down the left hand side. For one second, the Australia substitute looks to have gotten the better of him, but Isla slides low to block the cross, and ends up nicking the last touch off Halloran too.
Australia are really spreading the play more efficiently here. Crucially, they are offering the man out wide a constant short option, which wasn't always there during periods of the first half.
Actually scratch that, from a more conventional angle, Vargas looked to be dead level with the last defender! Probably the first major mistake from the match officials tonight!
OFFSIDE for Vargas, when for a second it looked like he had left the Australian defence trailing in its wake! Replays show that the linesman made exactly the right call.
You probably don't need me to tell you again how good Cahill is in the air. So just a quick FYI, he sprung above Jara once again to meet a cross, but this time, plants it AGONIZINGLY over the crossbar!
That's the curtain call for Oar too, who departs for Halloran. He had an active game on the left flank for Australia, but just started to run out of steam towards the end here.
That's the end of the evening for Valdivia, who usually does not last the full 90 minutes. Sampaoli opts for the more industrious attacking presence of Beausejour, who will better help them hold onto their advantage.
Referee Doue is then called into some more orthodox action, as Milligan is the latest Aussie to get his name taken. It was quite a blatant trip on Sanchez. He takes it with little complaint.
Yellow CardMark Daniel Milligan
The referee earns some ironic cheers from the fans after he jogged right in the way of an attempted no-look pass from Valdivia. It didn't stop anything critical for Chile though, so the crowd took it with some amusement.
Chile crowded out on the edge of the Aussie box and that sparks them forward on the break! Leckie is the man on the ball and he nearly takes it gloriously all the way, but the tackle from Jara comes in at the last!
This game is balancing on the head of a pin. The next goal will surely decide things, and I'm not calling a winner at this stage. Chile are in the ascendancy for the first time this half.
The goal line technology is finally put to good use, showing that Wilkinson's clearance occurred before the ball crossed the line. Finally a relevant function for the new aide, after some ridiculous uses of the technology in previous games that insulted the intelligence of everyone involved.
OFF THE LINE! Vargas was already wheeled of in celebration as he appeared to do enough to roll the ball over the line. However, Wilkinson turns his body JUST in time to make a miraculous clearance just on the goalline! Amazing defensive play!
Vidal's had a relatively subdued game by his storming standards, but given his fitness levels, it's no surprise. And Sampaoli decides not to push his luck, subbing his star midfielder for Gutierrez.
Australia have been the side causing all the danger here in the second half. Some real determined play from the Socceroos, who have surely won the admiration of many neutrals with their efforts.
Yellow CardMile Jedinak
Sanchez tripped up by Jedinak, and the Crystal Palace man duly sees a yellow card for the infraction. He was pretty omnipresent for the Premier League side last season, the Eagles captain.
MAGNIFICENT FROM BRAVO! Leckie hooks in the deepest of crosses from the left hand side. Medel barges the danger man Cahill off the ball, but that only allows it to fall to Bresciano, who unleashes a VICIOUS shot that's parried by Bravo, who makes himself big to stop the Al-Gharafa man's follow up! What a sequence!
Another plus for the fans inside the Arena Pantanal. Both the Roja and Socceroos factions have been partying it up in the stands long before the first whistle. It's added another delightful flourish to this already wonderful game.
CHALKED OFF! Australia have a goal correctly disallowed for offside, but my word, how dominant in the air is Cahill? He bruises the Chilean defence in the air again to plant home Leckie's cross with his head, but he hadn't gotten himself in line when the ball was played.
Aaaaahh...Chile try to be too cute. Isla cuts the ball back to Valdivia, who flicks it with a deft touch to Sanchez at the top of the box. The shot could have been taken already, but Sanchez opts for another pass, by which time Wilkinson intercepts.
Some controversy here inside the Chile penalty area as Cahill misses a header, appealing almost straight away. Replays show that Jara had a good bit of fabric clenched in his fist, tugging back Cahill on that play.
First sub of the game here, and it's not Wright on. Franjic, who supplied that gorgeous assist for Cahill, has departed for the lanky McGowan, who will ostensibly take his place on the right side of the defence.
Aranguiz shows all the freshness of a half time break to beat his man to the byeline and hook in a short cross, which Sanchez nearly touches past his man with otherworldly skill. Spiranovic manages to get his body in place though and get rid.
Bailey Wright has been spotted getting warmed up on the sidelines. He does his club business at Preston North End in the third tier of the English football league pyramid. Should he appear, he'll be Preston's first World Cup player since the 1950's.
As you were in terms of the two XI's for the second period. Let's hope for both sides to slam down on the accelerator at the start of the second half. Still finely poised at 2-1.
Here we go again!
But Australia hit back in steely fashion, with Cahill showing the hops to spring above Medel and head in Franjic's artisanal cross. I'd definitely give the edge to La Roja, but the Socceroos have shown that there's a game to be had! Stay tuned for the restart in just a bit.
This is the fourth game of an already incredible World Cup, and we've had one as good as any we've seen so far. Chile started with a flourish, and threatened to top the exploits of the Netherlands earlier when they raced into a two goal lead.
45' + 2'
After a long delay to set up the free kick, Chile eschew the direct option for a short, one ouch routine. However, it crumbles on the final pass from Valdivia to Isla, and that is that for the first half.
Just about into stoppage time now and Australia have a free kick to defend. It's definitely within shooting range, about 22-25 yards out from Ryan's goal. Chile are taking their time to line this up.
Yellow CardTim Cahill
First booking of the game, and it's flashed in the direction of Australia's goalscorer. An indeterminable one for me, he must have had a snarky word or two for the referee!
Surely Vidal's snuck his barber aboard Chile's charter jet to Brazil? every time I see him, his mohawk's impeccably and intricately lined with roughly the precision of a laser.
Aranguiz takes a pass with exquisite skill, and allows Valdivia to run the ball off his toes. He squares to the overlapping Isla on the right, who pulls up for a cross, but he can't get it past the first man.
They say the Australians never know when they're beaten. And the Socceroos in the stands have taken that to heart. They never stopped chanting even when Chile were trampling all over them, and now, they're only a goal away from parity. Incredible match so far!
Well that two goal lead that looked so unassailable just moments ago now sees Chile needing to push on to secure a more comfortable cushion again, given how easily Australia plucked a goal out of nowhere!
Going back to that goal, and it's clear that Chile really need to sort out their left flank. Not to put all the blame on Mena, but his constant forays forward have not helped at all. Every single moment of Australian good fortune has come down his side of the field.
CAHILL AGAIN! Australia almost pulled a Chile, coming within Bravo's legs of striking twice in two minutes! Cahill gallops into free space on the right side of the box, but his low finish is thwarted by the Roja keeper!
It had to be him in just that fashion, didn't it! Franjic takes advantage of hesitation on the left and swings in a great cross, sparking a man to man battle for the ball between Cahill and Medel. The Chile defender is easily out-jumped by the Red Bulls man, who plants a delicious header home!
CAHILL DOES WHAT HE DOES BEST!
Mena, the Chile left back, has been playing essentially as a left winger. On the rare occasion that Australia have attacked, they've been faced with a back three as Mena's regularly been late back down the field.
Valdivia has to be helped up by referee Noumandiez Doue as Chile set up a corner. He's kept a superb rule over this game so far, the Ivory Coast official. The game has never flowed better.
We haven't seen a whole lot from Cahill so far, which is bad for Australia given that so much rests in his springed heels. It's not entirely his own fault though as he did move into a great position to attack one cross, which never came from Leckie.
Perhaps the Aussies have weathered the storm? Just about half an hour gone, and the Chilean guillotine hasn't swung down for a few minutes. A more measured approach from Sampaoli's men at the moment.
NEARLY for Chile. Valdivia receives a ball with his back to goal and in one fell swoop, turns on a dime and sprays a pass for the advancing Sanchez. Spiranovic this time has his head on his shoulders though, and intercepts with some conviction to snuff out the danger.
Jedinak perhaps lucky to avoid some form of retribution from the referee after going in late on Sanchez, tripping up the Barca man quite plainly. Not even a lecture from the ref though, who's keen to keep up the magnificent tempo that this match has maintained so far.
Australia spot a weakness down the right hand side with Mena caught ball watching and out of position. Leckie has a good first step on the left back and drives to the byeline, but he HASHES the cross badly! With Cahill lining up unmarked in the area, Leckie instead sends it into the stands.
Australia are the lowest ranked team in this edition of the World Cup and I'm sorry to say that 62nd place is looking rather generous on the run of play so far. It's too easy for Chile.
First real Vidal sighting in the attacking third, as the Juventus man drives towards the right side of the box, but his end product is neither a cross, shot or a pass, flashing out somewhere in the vicinity of the corner flag.
Australia nearly ham it up at the back again. We've seen Casillas already punished today for dallying on the ball, and Spiranovic nearly has his pocket picked by Sanchez inside his own box.
Terrible. Just terrible. Oar can't even get the ball past a two man wall, and you could hear the sigh from the Australian bench. He shouldn't be allowed to take another set piece if that's the best he can do.
Now Australia have a free kick inside the opposition half. They are wisely getting all the big men in yellow up into the box, and Chile may have some work to do defending this!
Oar tries to wrest the Socceroos back into contention with a long range try from some 25 yards. It's not on target, but Bravo still makes the dive to be sure. Something positive at least.
The control and movement from Chile in the final third is just delicious. They've been so good that Vidal has barely had a challenging moment to test the fitness of his knee. Another thrashing in Group B on the cards?
Poor Australia. It's not happening anywhere for them. Milligan's ball square to the left back Davidson appeared to be routine, but it moves forward at the last minute and out for a Chile throw.
Chile are simply putting the smack down. Australia cannot get the ball out of their own half. Valdivia wins another corner for La Roja after forcing Bresciano into a late deflection near the byeline.
That's his first goal for some four years, Valdivia, and it's sent the Chilean fans into a frenzy inside the stands. That's some achievement, given that they were already making an almighty racket long before kickoff.
Sanchez has been lighting it up! He leads Chile to the top of the box, and just before the tackle comes in, he unselfishly squares to Valdivia, who smashes home from just inside the area! Fantastic!
IT'S RAINING GOALS! CHILE HAVE ANOTHER!
A move started and finished by the Barcelona star! With his back to goal in the box, he heels the ball to Aranguiz, who tangos past Ryan inside the area, clipping the ball back towards a briefly unguarded net. No Chilean can win the header, but the ball drops to Sanchez, who applies the finish!
SANCHEZ BREAKS THE DEADLOCK!
And a third silly infraction from the South Americans soon follows with Medel picking up a handball for a rather ambitious attempt to control a bouncing ball at the top of the box.
Australia are getting themselves good and well stuck in with a few meaty challenges, but it's Chile who have been drawing the ire of the referee so far. Both Isla and Mena cough up fouls one after the other.
It's looking like a fruit salad out on the pitch with Chile's red and blue strip dovetailing festively with Australia's mostly yellow kit. No surprise to see the former dominating the possession stats early too.
Sampaoli's moved away from his regular back three tonight, lining up with a more conventional four at the back. It doesn't change their approach though, as the two wingbacks Mena and Isla will always lap up any available space on the flanks.
Only the fifth game in charge of Australia for Ange Postecoglou then. And we've seen some designs towards their tactical approach, as Oar lofts in a cross from WAY out that is easy pickings for Bravo.
Bang bang, we're off!
Chile's anthem is being sung with a magnificent amount of gusto, almost matching the Brazilian's rendition from yesterday. Australia follow with their own spirited song. It's sensational in the stands from both sets of fans!
It's not all doom and gloom for Australia though. Cahill loves himself a good header, and Chile's backline is not, and never has been the tallest. Expect Leckie and Oar to show no hesitation in getting crosses in. Set pieces will also be huge for the men from down under.
Then, you add Vidal filling gaps all over the pitch like quicksand, Valdivia pinging through balls left, right and centre and Sampaoli's full throttle style, and well, Australia better have the Gatorade ready!
Chile have started with a narrow diamond midfield, but anyone expecting La Roja to concentrate their attacks solely down the centre hasn't been paying attention. Sanchez and Vargas love a drift out wide, with the likes of Isla also at home attacking the flanks.
Some A-League talent on show tonight for the Socceroos. Two players from the Australian top flight, Matthew Spiranovic and Ivan Franjic, make up part of the back four. The relative inexperience at the top level continues down to the bench, with Bailey Wright and Massimo Luongo both riding the pine.
For Australia, former Everton pogo stick Tim Cahill will do the heavy lifting up front. He's something of a relic from a byegone age, with former running mates from previous World Cups like Mark Viduka, Harry Kewell and Mark Schwarzer long since retired. He's still got Mark Bresciano to keep him company from midfield though.
Chile's other hotshot Alexis Sanchez starts up top, alongside Eduardo Vargas, who's fresh off a loan spell at Valencia from Napoli. Tucking in just behind the pair is that enigma of enigmas, playmaker Jorge Valdivia. Jorge Sampaoli's clearly set up this side to exploit space and punish at pace.
We've got to start with the best player in the house. Who knows what sort of voodoo Arturo Vidal practiced in the dark of the night, but he's managed to reduce the swelling around his troublesome knee enough to start for Chile. La Roja 1-0 Socceroos. Although only time will tell what sort of shape his knee is really in.
AUSTRALIA SUBS: Langerak, Galekovic, McGowan, Wright, Luongo, McKay, Holland, Vidosic, Bozanic, Troisi, Halloran, Taggart.
CHILE SUBS: Toselli, Herrera, Albornoz, Rojas, Silva, Carmona, Orellana, Beausejour, Gutierrez, Fuenzalida, Paredes, Pinilla.
AUSTRALIA (4-3-2-1): Ryan; Spiranovic, Wilkinson, Davidson, Franjic; Jedinak, Milligan, Bresciano; Leckie, Oar; Cahill.
CHILE (4-3-1-2): Bravo; Mena, Jara, Medel, Isla; Vidal, Díaz, Aranguiz; Valdivia; Sanchez, Vargas.
We've got team news in for you first and foremost, so...
Not had enough Group B action? Then join me, Keeghann Sinanan to witness Chile taking on Australia at Arena Pantanal!
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