World Cup Finals: Spain vs. Holland
Spain has already bested their top World Cup finish and they are the favorites against Holland in the final and each team is looking for their first World Cup trophy.
Holland vs. Spain – Current Match Odds
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has Spain at +115 with Holland at +235 with a draw at +230 and a goal total of 2.
Holland has played in two World Cup finals in 1974 and 1978 and they lost both times and the Dutch are hoping the third time is the charm. 2010 is already the best showing of Spain, as in their semifinals win they bested their fourth place finish of 1950.
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In their history these teams have faced each other nine times with each side winning four, losing four and one draw. However, the Dutch have had the number of Spain recently, as they have won three of the last four meetings and Spain has not won since 1983.
In their semifinal wins Holland beat Uruguay 3-2 and Spain beat Germany 1-0.
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Coming into the tournament Spain was favored to win it all and the main reason was because of their offense, but it has been their defense that has carried them to the finals. In their three playoff games they have yet to concede a goal winning three straight 1-0 matches.
Holland has played well in their playoffs wins, but they will need to shore up their defense against Spain. In their three playoff matches they have given up four goals. In their semifinals win over Uruguay Holland had fewer shots (12 to 11) and they cannot let that happen against Spain. They cannot allow Spain to dominate the ball and have to play solid defense on David Villa and Pedro.
Spain’s defense will have to play well against a Holland offense that is in sync and has looked great in the knockout stage. They will have to mark Arjen Robben and especially Wesley Sneijder, who has scored in every playoff match and is tied with Spain’s David Villa for the most goals scored in the World Cup (5).
The midfield play is the key for each team, as the squad that can win the time of possession battle and control the midfield will give their team more chances to score. The key match up is between MF Mark van Bommel of Holland and MF Xavi of Spain.
If this game goes to penalties the edge has to go to Spain. Iker Casillas has been the shoot out hero a couple of times for Spain with two saves in the round of 16 match in the World Cup in 2002 against Ireland and two saves against Italy in the 2008 European Championships. Maarten Stekelenburg has been decent in goal for the Dutch, but he has no clean sheets in the playoffs and Casillas has three.
The defense of Spain is the key, as they will play solid again and since the Dutch are struggling on defense Spain will score while Holland will not. Spain will win their first World Cup and I think a fourth straight 1-0 score will not happen, as Spain’s offense will score more than one goal.
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