BBC Sport world-cup-2010


Netherlands 0-1 Spain (aet)

By Jonathan Stevenson & Chris Bevan
  1. 12:05 Commentary  

    Welcome to the greatest single sporting occasion on planet earth.

  2. 12:12 Commentary  

    I know, I’ve had a lifetime to write that opening comment. But whatever I tried just sounded - how can I put this? - not grand enough. Anyway, you don’t need me to explain the enormity of this particular live text. It’s the World Cup final, the Netherlands versus Spain for the biggest prize in sport.

  3. 12:18 Commentary  

    I’m Jonathan Stevenson, I’m in Johannesburg right next to the venue for tonight’s showpiece occasion, and I’m sure you won’t mind me telling you that this is probably the most significant day of my (working) life thus far. It’s certainly a lot more fun than how I spent my day two months ago today, anyway.

  4. Contributor BBC Sport's James Pearce  

    On Twitter: "This is great. South Africans begin to celebrate end of first African World Cup outside Soccer City."

  5. 12:26 Commentary  

    I’ll try not to get too overwhelmed by it all, but you might have to rein me in a little from time to time. Please, please, please get in touch today, because this is a special day for all of us. I’ll keep reminding you, but here’s how you take part on World Cup final day:
    By tweeting me @Stevo_football;
    By texting me on 81111 (UK) and +44 7786200666 (worldwide);
    By signing up and signing in on the 606 debate of truth.

  6. 12:31 Commentary  

    PS Hey, can you please put 'FOOTBALL' in front of any texts, because I've just been told there's another significant sporting event happening today in the UK. Ah, the UK. Has it changed much in the last five weeks?

  7. 606  

    From camerlion: "Got back from the World Cup two weeks ago today. Had an absolutely fantastic time. The atmosphere will no doubt be electric and hope the game itself is a classic. South Africa has done a fantastic job hosting the world and showing that the continent can, if given the chance."

    I agree wholeheartedly.

  8. 12:39 Commentary  

    News reaches us from the great and good at Fifa that they expect the global television audience for tonight to exceed the 700 million who watched Italy beat France on penalties four years ago. Interestingly, the United States has reported a 50% increase in overall figures compared to 2006.

  9. Twitter  

    From koosio: "Laughed at all the pre-World Cup reports about African witch doctors. Now wearing same shirt for seventh match and cursing an octopus."

  10. Contributor BBC Sport's Paul Fletcher  

    On Twitter: "A windy day at Soccer City - which means plenty of dusty is blowing across the stadium. Still looks amazing though."

  11. 12:51 Commentary Football legend Johan Cruyff:  

    "Spain is now the great favourite. Del Bosque's team has grown in strength and finds itself in the final at the top of its game. In the semi, Germany played football which would have been enough to beat any team, but not Spain. Spain, a replica of Barca, is the best publicity for football. Who am I supporting? I am Dutch but I support the football that Spain is playing."

  12. 12:55 Commentary  

    By the way, I hope you managed to catch some of last night's bronze medal match. It turned into a cracker between Uruguay and Germany, with Joachim Loew's side sneaking a five-goal thriller. It's also made the race for the Golden Shoe more interesting, didn't it Thomas Mueller?

  13. SMS  

    From Tom, Pete and Russ: "On way to Soccer City. Transport chaos at airport. Found a nice match official who blagged us on to a coach and told us to pretend to be Dutch Fifa delegates! Anyone know any Dutch?"

  14. 13:03 Commentary  

    News just in from Berlin: Germany's president says he will award coach Joachim Loew the country's Federal Cross of Merit for taking them to third place at the World Cup. President Christian Wulff said in a televised press conference on Sunday that the players will be decorated with the Silver Laurel.

  15. 13:06 Commentary  

    I love the start to this Reuters piece, so I'm going to share it with you: "Hordes of orange-clad Dutch fans and red-bedecked Spaniards were battling it out in Johannesburg to see who could sing the loudest, drink the most and dress the silliest ahead of Sunday's World Cup final."

  16. 606  

    From Farslayer: "On 11th July 1302, Flemish (Dutch) cities, against all the odds and all predictions defeated the mighty French Army in the Battle of Golden Spurs. 708 years later, against all odds and against octopus predictions, they face the mighty Spanish football team. Can Xavi and Iniesta win where the French army failed (without killing anyone this time, thank you)?"

  17. 13:13 Commentary Germany's Bastian Schweinsteiger:  

    "There is a bit of a tear in my eye thinking of the semi-final we lost, but there is a smile in the other one as we showed both heart and courage against Uruguay. If we keep improving like this, sooner or later the trophy will be ours."

  18. 13:17 Commentary  

    Anyway, there’s a very sketchy plan for this particular Sunday 11 July, but as long as we all appreciate that flexibility is king, it’ll run like a dream. Effectively, myself in Johannesburg and Chris Bevan in Cape Town will guide you through proceedings, with the closing ceremony (sniff) getting under way shortly after 1730 BST and the World Cup final kicking off at 1930 BST. Sound OK?

  19. Twitter  

    From e_mcveigh: "Bronze medal match was fantastic viewing. Germany were beautiful to watch, and Forlan's final free-kick made my heart skip."

  20. 13:24 Commentary  

    True to my word about constant reminders, here's how you get involved on World Cup final day: you tweet me @Stevo_football (what a day to crash through the 10,000 barrier this would be), you text me on 81111 (UK) and +44 7786200666 (worldwide), and you join up and join in on 606.

  21. 13:27 Commentary  

    Uruguay striker Diego Forlan on Twitter: "La mesa del mundial, nacho, la tota, juan, diego, andres y yo. Nos hemos divertido mucho."

  22. 13:31 Commentary Spain coach Vicente del Bosque:  

    "There are players from all over Spain here in the squad, we are united and I hope the same feeling of unity occurs back in Spain. I think sport does many good things and I hope football could lead to better relations in our country."

  23. 13:37 Commentary Netherlands coach Bert van Marwijk:  

    "Scoring goals is unimportant now. This is a new match, a special match. We have lots of players who can score a goal and so do Spain. We have got to believe in ourselves and not be afraid. We are convinced we can win."

  24. 13:43 Commentary  

    “Stevo, stop your wittering on and tell us what Paul the psychic octopus has predicted for this evening.” Hearing you, loud and clear. Having correctly forecast all of Germany’s results so far in the tournament, the footballing foreseer (used it before I know, but I was pretty happy with it) now reckons Spain will beat Netherlands in the final. But wait, the plot thickens. A parakeet called Mani in Singapore is giving Predo Paul a run for his money after correctly identifying all four semi-finalists. Mani has gone for the Netherlands - it’s a straight shootout.

  25. SMS  

    Dickens, Kenya: "Can somebody tell me why Barcelona are hell bent to get Fabregas with all the midfield talent they have? Is this not greed? Sad that the World Cup has come to an end. Enjoyed your chat chaps, good work."

  26. 13:51 Commentary  

    I cannot believe it's a month ago that I rocked up at Soccer City, watched Siphiwe Tshabalala smash the ball into the top corner and watched a nation go absolutely mental. A month. The area around the stadium at 1000 BST this morning was humming already, with a few hundred fans getting in the mood and a few hundred police taking their last orders too.

  27. 13:57 Commentary  

    It’s fair to say that most media outlets throw the kitchen sink at the World Cup final, and I’d like to think we’re no different. But apart from the obvious analytical/preview stuff, there are lots of articles/videos etc with a difference - from the final episode of Special 1 TV, to South Africa president Jacob Zuma talking about how the World Cup has “united” his country, to the top 10 goals of the tournament. Oh, and Brazil 2014 have unveiled their new logo too, which is utterly brilliant.

  28. Contributor BBC Sport's James Pearce  

    On Twitter: "Soccer City full of Dutch fans. Where are the Spanish? Get down here because you're outnumbered at the moment :)"

  29. 14:05 Commentary  

    I can hear Vuvuzelas outside, I think I'm really going to miss those controversial trumpets you know. The main Fifa control room at the International Broadcast Centre in Joburg has about a million screens - it's quite a sight - and almost all of them are showing views from Soccer City right now. I got dizzy just peering in from outside.

  30. 14:11 Commentary  

    Did you know that the Netherlands and Spain have never previously before met in a European Championship or a World Cup? Bizarre, isn't it? They've met nine times overall with four wins apiece, and the Dutch triumphed 1-0 at their last rendez-vous in a friendly on 27 March 2002 thanks to Frank de Boer's goal.

  31. Twitter  

    From injoburg: "As a Dutch resident of Joburg I'm double happy today. What's your impression of Joburg been? Would you advise others to go?"

    I definitely want to come back, not seen as much as I'd have liked because of the football. But grown quite fond of it to be honest. People should defo come to SA.

  32. 14:20 Commentary  

    The world is waiting to find out whether the great Nelson Mandela will attend the final this evening. The 91-year-old, who shares a birthday with yours truly, has been put under "extreme pressure" by Fifa to appear, according to his grandson Mandla Mandela.

  33. 14:24 Commentary  

    Frankly, our friends at Infostrada Sports make every day a better day, and this won't be the exception. Here's some early chat from the stat kings: "The only other World Cup final to take place on 11 July was 28 years ago when Italy beat West Germany 3-1 in Madrid. Forty-four years ago today, the 1966 World Cup opened with a goalless draw between England and Uruguay. It was the first of four successive clean sheets kept by England who won their only World Cup 19 days later.

  34. 606  

    From BobbyMooresTackle: "I have a feeling Holland will win this one. Van Persie is due a good game and I can see him grabbing an early goal. I also think Robben will cause an ageing Capdevila some problems down the right-hand side."

  35. 14:35 Commentary  

    My World Cup final memories are a bit sketchy until 12 years ago. In 1986 I was too young to watch all of it, in 1990 I was at my brother's school play and in 1994 I think I watched it half asleep like everyone else. In 1998 I was glued to the telly with my dad as the BBC tried to discover if Brazil's Ronaldo was even playing or not. I wonder whether we'll get a big pre-match story this evening. Anyway, your memories please.

  36. 14:39 Commentary Spain's Andres Iniesta:  

    “This is a historic event, a unique opportunity for us all. It makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand up just thinking about it. We have all dreamed of this moment. But we have to finish the dream. We cannot celebrate anything yet. Before us is the challenge of winning a World Cup. We are cautious because we know that we still have the last step, and that last step is the most difficult and the most beautiful."

  37. 14:43 Commentary Netherlands skipper Giovanni van Bronckhorst:  

    “It is our tournament. I have sometimes had the feeling that we cannot lose. We have not always played very well, but we have scored at pivotal moments. We have so often gone so close to a title that it would be nice to finish with a smile one day.”

  38. SMS  

    Mohammed in Zambia: "I put a $2000 bet on Holland to win the World Cup a month ago and now octopus says Spain are going to win. Oh the agony."

  39. Contributor BBC Sport's Howard Nurse:  

    On Twitter: "The clock is ticking to the 2010 World Cup final. Let this put you in the mood, tonight's opening on BBC1/HD at 1830 BST."

  40. 14:54 Commentary  

    Right then folks, now the British GP has been won by an Australian, can I have your full attention? I need your involvement - it is World Cup final day after all. Get the texts in to 81111 (UK) and +44 7786200666 (worldwide), get tweeting me @Stevo_football and pop along to 606.

  41. 15:00 Commentary  

    Hold the phone, I've got my three-and-a-lot-year-old nephew's predo. Nathan reckons Spain will win 1-0 tonight, with Andres Iniesta bagging the winning goal. Thanks to his dad for squeezing that out of him as they tear it up at Sundown Adventureland (other fun times for kids are available).

  42. Twitter  

    From anil1589: "Baggio, Ronaldo, Kahn and Zidane. Who will be the next victim of the World Cup final curse? I am going with Villa."

  43. 15:11 Commentary  

    Remember, there will be English involvement in the final this evening in the shape of referee Howard Webb and his assistants Darren Cann and Michael Mullarkey. The 38-year-old former police sergeant Webb has already taken charge of Spain 0-1 Switzerland, Slovakia 3-2 Italy and Brazil 3-0 Chile. He’s the first English ref to officiate the World Cup final since Jack Taylor in 1974.

  44. 15:15 Commentary English referee Howard Webb:  

    “We are delighted to have been selected for the game, it is a wonderful honour and a privilege. It is the ultimate honour for a referee. We will be proud to be able to show the ability and quality of match officials in England when we take to the field.”

  45. 15:19 Commentary 1974 World Cup final refereeing legend Jack Taylor:  

    “I believe Howard is the best referee this country has ever produced. It's a huge honour and this is a great reflection of English officiating, it says that we're respected. He's a great guy, an excellent referee and it's just rewards for all his efforts.”

  46. 606  

    From Jinadine: "Sky Sports Spanish journalist Guillem Balague said it best. After the 2006 World Cup, Spain decide to keep possession of the ball & haven't given it away since. The Spaniards' gameplan in a simplistic way is this: Possession, possession, create a chance, Villa scores. So far, so good."

  47. 15:25 Commentary  

    Breaking news: Nelson Mandela's grandson indicates the 91-year-old wants to go to the World Cup final to greet fans.

  48. 15:29 Commentary Coach Guus Hiddink:  

    "The Dutch have become a little like the Germans of yesteryear: realism has replaced beautiful football. Of course, it is not always pretty to the eye, and I would like more time spent playing nice football, but what (the coach Bert) van Marwijk and his players have succeeded in doing is extraordinary."

  49. 15:34 Commentary  

    Don’t be shy, I want to know your player of the tournament. Golden Ball winners of yore include Diego Armando Maradona, Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima and Zinedine Zidane - and one from David Villa, Xavi, Andres Iniesta, Arjen Robben, Wesley Sneijder, Mesut Ozil, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Lionel Messi, Asamoah Gyan and Diego Forlan will follow in their footsteps today.

  50. SMS  

    TK from Kennington SE11: "Dundee Utd, Blackpool - Tangerines win finals this year. And Wesley Sneijder wins everything he plays in. Oranje it is!"

  51. Contributor BBC Sport's Clarence Seedorf  

    "The whole country is celebrating. The Netherlands weren't one of the favourites before the tournament, but it's nice to see a bit of an outsider there. It's strange to say because the Dutch like to have to ball, but they don't need to have it all the time tonight. The key battle might be Arjen Robben against Joan Capdevila."

  52. Contributor BBC Sport's Mark Lawrenson  

    "I think Spain might start with Fernando Torres this evening instead of Pedro, somehow. What they do not want is a big gap in front of Joan Capdevila, leaving him exposed against Arjen Robben."

  53. 15:45 Commentary  

    The Netherlands stand on the brink of a feat accomplished only once before, by the brilliant Brazilians of 1970 - to win every single qualifying game and every match at the tournament too. This is a team that has now won 10 games in a row and is unbeaten in 25, both Dutch records. Their 14 competitive wins in a row is a new European record too.

  54. Contributor BBC Sport's Paul Fletcher  

    On Twitter: "Spain are playing in blue today - but if they win expect them to change to their trusty red to pick up their medals."

  55. 15:48 Commentary  

    Nelson Mandela update: The icon will greet fans at Soccer City at the World Cup closing ceremony  on Sunday but is likely to return home to watch the game on television, his grandson told the AFP news agency.

  56. 606  

    From eirebilly: "The atmosphere here in Holland is absolutely amazing. It's a sea of orange and the Vuvuzelas are seriously loud. There is a very good feeling here that the Dutch footballers will be welcomed home with the World Cup in their hands."

  57. 15:53 Commentary  

    Soccer City is open for business, by the way, so if you're one of the lucky ones who have got a golden ticket, feel free to go and sample the pre-match atmosphere. I mean we've only got a little over three-and-a-half hours left until kick-off.

  58. 15:57 Commentary Spain midfielder Xavi:  

    "We don't want to become another clockwork orange, we want to be the champions. We want to go down in history by lifting this trophy. It would be hugely just for football, good for this sport and, what's more, this generation of players deserves it."

  59. 16:01 Commentary Dutch winger Arjen Robben:  

    “I would much prefer to win a very ugly game than lose a beautiful one. The point is, we are in a World Cup final. From now on how you actually play no longer matters. We will defend from the front - no-one here feels they are too special to get their hands dirty."

  60. Contributor BBC Sport's Honest Frank:  

    On Twitter: "Few predicted Ned v Esp World Cup final. Just one of 58 pundits in our BBC poll did. Take a bow, Xavier Rivoire."

  61. Contributor BBC Sport's James Pearce  

    On Twitter: "Just walked fast right to top of Soccer City to broadcast so if I'm out of breath on BBC News Channel in few mins you'll know why."

  62. 16:11 Commentary  

    BBC Sport presenter and World Cup legend Gary Lineker, who played for Barcelona in the 1980s, reckons Spain "play the most attacking, adventurous and stylish football." The 1986 Golden Shoe winner is full of praise for the Netherlands too, but adds: "I have tipped Spain to triumph all along, just as I did two years ago. I am definitely going to stick with them now."

  63. 16:15 Commentary  

    Spain have scored only seven goals at the World Cup, you might like to know, with only David Villa, Andres Iniesta and Carles Puyol notching. The fewest goals netted by any World Cup-winning team is 11, by England in 1966 and Brazil in 1994. The Netherlands have so far banged in 12.

  64. Twitter  

    From pjmsteele: "The final kicks off in Australia at 4am. Do I try and get a nap in and risk missing it or battle through? Decisions!"

    We've spent years together, you lot and I. Do I really, really need to answer that?

  65. 16:21 Commentary Spain's Euro 2008-winning coach Luis Aragones:  

    "We decided to make holding on to the ball our virtue - to defend with the ball, to attack with the ball, everything centered on maintaining possession with everything stemming out of the midfield. Whoever owns the midfield, owns the game. Physically and psychologically, Spain are ready."

  66. 16:25 Commentary Netherlands' Dirk Kuyt:  

    "Dutch football has always been very good. In every tournament we have shown there is quality. In this tournament we have shown we have more than quality. We also have belief. We believe we can beat every opponent. We have the patience to do it."

  67. 16:29 Commentary Spain's Sergio Busquets:  

    “[On Spain's Dutch influence] I can talk to you about Louis van Gaal and Johan Cruyff, who brought important players through from the youth system at Barcelona. Frank Rijkaard also pushed the 4-3-3 philosophy which is important for Barca and has also helped the national team.”

  68. SMS  

    From Tom in Scarborough: "I think the game tonight is going to be a tricky one to predict, like the entirety of the World Cup has been really. Two teams who we all know can attack and, as they've shown over the last few weeks, can defend equally as well. Sneijder and Villa have been in fantastic form and if they keep it up, we're in for a spectacle. With everything in mind, 1-1 after the 90 and David Villa to pop up with a late extra-time winner I reckon. One thing's for sure, I'm looking forward to getting home from work to watch this game."

  69. 16:36 Commentary  

    Let us not forget that the Netherlands v Spain is the first World Cup final without Argentina, Brazil, Italy or West Germany. Whoever wins tonight will become the eighth winners after Brazil (5), Italy (4), (West) Germany (3), Argentina (2), Uruguay (2), England (1) and France (1). As Europe are guaranteed to win, Uefa will go 10-9 up over the Conmebol nations in World Cup victories.

  70. 16:39 Commentary  

    There has been a lot of talk about the Netherlands midfield enforcer Mark van Bommel this week and his crucial role in trying to stop Spain playing. BBC blogger Paul Fletcher believes “how effectively he performs on Sunday will directly impact on Spain's much-feted passing game.”

  71. 606  

    From hawick: "I'm excited already. These two sides have the attacking firepower (and defensive frailties, the Dutch in central defence, the Spanish in goal) to make this a vintage final. Have they the bottle to go for it, though?"

  72. 16:45 Commentary  

    I think it's time to hand over to Chris Bevan in Cape Town. Hey, you enjoy yourselves, won't you? Happy World Cup final day, may the best team triumph and may football be the biggest winner of them all.

  73. 16:50 Commentary  

    Hello there, yes I'm Chris Bevan, and I am indeed still in Cape Town - for another 24 hours or so anyway. So, how has Africa's first World Cup been for you? Yes, I know it's far from over yet - and let's hope Spain and the Netherlands can end the tournament with a bang tonight - but in six hours time we will definitely know who the new world champions are. Excited? Yes, me too.

  74. 16:55 Commentary  

    If you give this page a manual refresh then Jonathan Stevenson will be consigned to World Cup history - which is the best place for him, don't you think? All done? Good, we will proceed. I hope you are all ready for this too because, one way or another, the next few hours are going to be very special.

  75. 16:59 Commentary  

    More than 700m people watched the last World Cup final, and I'm expecting roughly the same amount to get in touch with me over the next few hours as we build up to this one. You don't have to be Paul the psychic octopus to know the score here either - text me on 81111 (UK) or +44 7786200666 (worldwide), I'm on or you can always get involved on 606.

  76. SMS  

    From Atte: "Atmosphere here inside Soccer City stadium is great, so hats off to the organisers. Bumped into Clarence Seedorf yesteday in town and have to say the man is a class act. Anyways, still have to go for Spain winning with the almost forgotten man Torres scoring the winner!"

  77. 17:05 Commentary  

    Clarence Seedorf reached a World Cup semi-final with the Netherlands in 1998, and he knows a thing or two (or four) about winning the Champions League too, so he is clearly no stranger to the big stage. Like Atte (below), I spoke to the AC Milan midfielder this week to find out who he is backing. Er, it's the Dutch, as it happens. "I do not think many people - myself included - really expected them to get this far but I am very proud of what they have achieved," Seedorf told me "To beat the European champions this weekend they must stick to the game plan that has brought them success in South Africa which is not focusing too much on playing beautiful football, just about winning games and getting the job done."

  78. Commentary Wigan's Spanish manager Roberto Martinez on BBC Radio 5 live:  

    "In the past, Spain were always technically and tactically very capable but they went to pieces mentally on the pitch at the major tournaments. The reason they have been so successful recently is that through their club teams, and specifically Barcelona, they have developed a winning mentality and arrogance to go with it."

  79. SMS  

    From Paul in France: "Hi Chris. Just came down with chicken pox today. Aparently not good in adults but I’m not letting it dim my World Cup final fever! Come on the Dutch! 3-2 AET."

  80. 17:19 Commentary  

    I'm about 780 miles south-west of Johannesburg, where the final will take place in 94,700-capacity Soccer City Stadium, but don't you go thinking football fever has waned in this part of South Africa since the last match took place here on Tuesday (the Netherlands' 3-2 win over Uruguay in their semi-final). There were still hundreds of fans (Spanish and Dutch) on the Waterfront when I wandered down there earlier today, and the locals have all adopted their own favourites since Bafana Bafana crashed out earlier in the tournament. Who has got the most support? Well, put it this way, there are still an awful lot of people who are dressed or painted in orange.

  81. 17:22 Commentary  

    If the fact that the final is tonight isn't enough of a clue for us all that the 19th World Cup is almost over, there is a closing ceremony shortly before it too. Now, I'll be honest, I've watched the last six World Cups and I cannot remember a single moment of the closing ceremonies from any of them, but Shakira is singing at this one - so I promise you I will be giving it my full attention. At the moment, there is a huge canvas covering the pitch, some of it painted in a similar pattern to the stadium itself, but nothing is going on - expect that to change in an hour-and-a-half or so.

  82. SMS  

    From John, Irishman living in South Africa: "Since watching Argentina vs Holland on TV in 1978, one of my life’s great ambitions has been to go to a World Cup Final. Sitting in the stand at Soccer City as I write this. Atmosphere outside was just brilliant. Inside is like no stadium I’ve ever seen before. So proud of what South Africa has achieved this past month. Could be a few tears shed tonight!"

  83. 17:30 Commentary  

    Shakira, who has picked Spain as likely winners tonight, will be performing the hit song 'Waka Waka' with Timmy Mallett. Ok, maybe she will just be singing it on her own. There is plenty more going on in the ceremony too, though, which promises to "pay tribute to the unique and colourful spirit, and warmth, of the African continent and it's people."

  84. 606  

    From GOONER-EN-SEVILLA: "So the final is almost upon us. I still feel that we have not seen the best from either team yet. Lets hope we do tonight (from both)!"

  85. 17:38 Commentary  

    OK, we know who the octopus thinks will win (Spain). But what about that other renowned foreseer of footballing facts of the future, World Cup Motty? "The rapier thrusts of Wesley Sneijder and Arjen Robben could be decisive but they have got to contain the subtle passing skills of the Spanish midfield - they keep the ball so well," says Motty. "Holland have got to break up that possession football and try to strike at the other end as quickly as they can. I think it will be mighty close, I think it will go to extra-time and just feel Spain with their possession football, might have the edge. I still believe Fernando Torres could be the unknown factor in this final, he hasn't played a full game yet but you never know, he might come on as a substitute and score the winning goals."

  86. 17:40 Commentary  

    The closing ceremony will, er, open any second now. Looks like most of the crowd have got there in time to see it too. I guess Shakira has that effect on everyone?

  87. SMS  

    From Andy in Amsterdam: "Two hours before kick-off and the city is going wild, who know whats going to happen if they defeat the Spanish tonight. I always thought I would never witness anything like Liverpool city centre after Istanbul. I have no doubt, should they win, this will top it! Hup Holland Hup!"

  88. 17:42 Commentary  

    Here we go. The stadium has been plunged into darkness. Either the closing ceremony is about to start, or someone forgot to pay the electricity bill.

  89. 17:44 Commentary  

    Just as with the opening ceremony, the stadium has had a fly-by from the South African version of the Red Arrows. I couldn't see them (it's dark and the TV camera was pointing in the wrong direction) but I certainly heard them.

  90. 17:47 Commentary  

    We're currently paying tribute to the other stadiums that have hosted matches at this World Cup, thanks to a natty bit of special FX that projected pictures of them on to the canvas covering the pitch. I'll be honest with you, this looks pretty awesome.

  91. 17:50 Commentary  

    Here she is, Shakira, and Freshlyground of course, singing 'Waka Waka'. Someone in my office is blowing a vuvuzela in tribute.

  92. Contributor BBC Sport's Paul Fletcher at Soccer City Stadium  

    "I have just heard an emotional appeal over the tannoy for fans inside the ground not to blow their vuvuzelas during the closing ceremony. First the anthems, now this. The vuvuzela is under threat."

  93. 17:53 Commentary  

    They promised unique special effects in this ceremony and they weren't kidding. Right now, the pitch is now a giant newspaper - which is ripped open to reveal action from the early matches (probably not much from France v Uruguay made the cut).

  94. SMS  

    David in Richmond: "Hi Chris, I think the fact Shakira kicked things off persuaded the great man Nelson Mandela to attend later! Looking forward to the final even more than Shakira's appearance, both teams deserve to be there. 2-1 to the Netherlands, Torres to score consolation goal."

  95. 18:00 Commentary  

    We are still covering the group stages I think. The flags of all the participating nations have been revealed on the pitch (like a patchwork quilt) by an army of fans, and then just been squashed into the shape of the African continent. Not sure how they are going to represent Germany crushing England in the second round through the medium of dance and light, but it looks like they are going to give it a go.

  96. Commentary South Africa president Jacob Zuma  

    "When we won the rights to host the World Cup, we knew that working together we would be able to succeed. However, what has happened so far, has exceeded our expectations. That is because of the role played by our people, the South Africans. They are the stars and champions of this tournament." 

  97. 18:02 Commentary  

    Grammy Award winners Ladysmith Black Mambazo have got the stadium transfixed with a song about rain, while the pitch begins to flood (thankfully, it's another special effect).

  98. 18:08 Commentary  

    Luckily, some 'elephants' have turned up to drink the water and drain the pitch. While that was happening we moved on to the story of the semi-finals, and we are now watching the Gumboot Dance. The action is currently is a bit like the video to Run DMC vs Jason Nevins' 'It's like that'. Comprehendo? No, thought not.

  99. SMS  

    From Rich, English by birth, South African for the evening: "Have been living in Jo’burg since the beginning of the year, and the atmosphere has been building for the last six months. Anyone still in doubt that this is the best place in the world has obviously not been here yet. I don’t think I will ever live through a month like this ever again. Being at the game tonight is a real privilege just to be able to enjoy South Africa’s finest moment. And that was before Madiba and Shakira. Oh, and the footy too!!"

  100. 18:15 Commentary  

    Right, that's the end of the closing ceremony, which was pretty amazing actually. Are they all that good? I hope you enjoyed it, if you could watch it. The even better news is that we are about 75 minutes away from kick-off of the World Cup final.

  101. 18:16 Commentary  

    Here comes Nelson Mandela.

  102. 18:18 Commentary  

    BREAKING TEAM NEWS: Fernando Torres has been left out of Spain's starting line-up, with Pedro getting the nod ahead of him just as in the semi-final win over Germany. Full line-ups to follow very shortly.

  103. 18:19 Commentary  

    It doesn't appear that Nelson Mandela will address the crowd at Soccer City Stadium, but it is fantastic that he is just there.

  104. Commentary Netherlands v Spain team line-ups  

    Netherlands: 1-Maarten Stekelenburg; 2-Gregory van der Wiel, 3-John Heitinga, 4-Joris Mathijsen, 5-Giovanni van Bronckhorst; 7-Dirk Kuyt, 6-Mark van Bommel, 10-Wesley Sneijder, 8-Nigel de Jong, 11-Arjen Robben; 9-Robin van Persie.

    Spain: 1-Iker Casillas; 15-Sergio Ramos, 3-Gerard Pique, 5-Carles Puyol, 11-Joan Capdevila; 14-Xabi Alonso, 8-Xavi, 6-Andres Iniesta, 16-Sergio Busquets; 18-Pedro, 7-David Villa.

    Referee: Howard Webb (England)

  105. 18:25 Commentary  

    Incredible scenes back in Amsterdam, where officials have urged fans to stay out of the Dutch capital, where 100,000 people have gathered on Museumplein (Museum Square) to watch a giant screen showing the game. "We urge people not to come, for public safety reasons but also simply because they won't be able to see anything of the match," municipal spokesman Bas Bruijn said.

  106. Contributor BBC Sport's Paul Fletcher at Soccer City Stadium  

    "So, a cracking closing ceremony including Shakira and some excellent elephants. Then we see the great man Nelson Mandela. This game of football has got a fair old bit of work to do if it isn't to be something of an anti-climax."

  107. Commentary Netherlands v Spain team news  

    The Netherlands make two changes to the side that started against Uruguay in the semi-finals as Gregory van der Wiel and Nigel de Jong return from suspension to replace Khalid Boulahrouz and Demy De Zeeuw. Spain, meanwhile, are unchanged from their last four victory over Germany, so Pedro is preferred to Fernando Torres and David Villa occupies the lone striker role.

  108. SMS  

    From Rob: "Chris, sitting on ’Heitinga Hill’ overlooking Museumplein. Orange as far as the eye can see, great atmosphere, Come on the oranje!"

    Heitinga Hill: I like it. Could also be Robben Rise, or Van Persie Peak.

  109. 18:35 Commentary  

    Ex-Oasis star Noel Gallagher will be at the final at Soccer City and he has also made his prediction. What's the story then Noel? "The Spanish are the best team in the world. Since the year leading up to the European Championships and subsequently from that they have been amazing." So, what's the, er, masterplan for a Spain victory? "The key part of the pitch is can Nigel de Jong and Mark van Bommel stop Andres Iniesta and and Xavi doing the business," added Gallagher. "De Jong plays at Man City and he's a stopper. Van Bommel, he's just destruction on legs. But the Spanish players face that a lot in the Champions League. I think it will be won and lost in the midfield."

  110. Contributor BBC Sport's Alan Shearer  

    "Team spirit and organisation has taken the Dutch to this final. Take Wesley Sneijder out of their team and they don't have any other really great players."

  111. Contributor BBC Sport's Alan Hansen  

    "It's not a shock that Fernando Torres has been left out by Spain. He has been a shadow of the player we know he is during this World Cup, and Pedro was a real livewire in their semi-final."

  112. 18:44 Commentary  

    Mr Gallagher is not the only person who thinks the Dutch face an uphill task this evening. In his tactical analysis of the final, Lee Dixon feels they could actually do with having another couple of holding midfielders sitting in front of their back four - making four in all. How about the Oranje's chances of creating chances themselves? "Basically, every time I look at a possible way that the Dutch might threaten, I look at Spain and think that I cannot really see them allowing them to do that. All I can see is a Spanish win."

  113. SMS  

    From Daniel: "I will be watching the final on a big screen in Dar es Salaam in Tanzania knowing that it's possible to keep Spain from scoring. And if the Dutch manage a late goal via Wesley Sneijder, the potential player of the finals, David Villa can well be forgotten. Go, go Netherlands go!"

  114. Twitter  

    From Guiri12: "Pedro to score tonight. He has scored in every tournament he has ever played, except the World Cup."

  115. 18:54 Commentary  

    With just over 35 minutes to go until kick-off, the players are out on the pitch and warming up. I've got a part to play in this World Cup tonight too, as I'm yet to cast my vote for the 'golden ball' - the award for the outstanding player of the tournament. I've got until the final whistle to decide so I'm going to leave it as late as possible, although I've got a few ideas. Your thoughts, as ever, are welcome.

  116. Contributor Spanish football expert Guillem Balague on BBC Radio 5 live  

    "It's a strange decision to pick Pedro ahead of Fernando Torres because, for Barca, Pedro is a winger - he doesn't play in the hole like he will tonight. I'm surprised because I thought Torres could do loads of work for David Villa, allowing him space and openings to score. Now as the lone striker, Villa will have to do that work for himself and as we saw against Germany, he is less effective in that role."

  117. SMS  

    From Matt in Amsterdam: "Also a sea of Orange on the Leidseplein. They have stopped the trams here. A few brave Spanish fans just waved a flag and were vuvuzelad to death."

  118. Twitter  

    Daily Telegraph's Henry Winter on Twitter: "A forlorn Fernando Torres has just strolled down the tunnel in a tracksuit, and is playing no part in the warm-up, even with the subs."

  119. 18:59 Commentary  

    There is some speculation that Fernando Torres is injured and may not be able to play any part tonight. I guess we will find out in the course of the next couple of hours or so, but it is sad that a player of his ability has been short of fitness and/or sharpness for this entire tournament.

  120. 19:03 Commentary  

    Right then, we are fast approaching kick-off, so it is time for me to hand you over to Jonathan Stevenson, who is at Soccer City Stadium in Johannesburg. Just a reminder you can watch this game live on BBC One and this website (if you are in the UK). Whether you are a fan of the Dutch or a Spanish supporter, enjoy the game - I will be.

  121. 19:05 Commentary  

    Welcome back to Johannesburg. Now, can I interest anyone in a new winner of the World Cup? Then don’t even think about going anywhere for the next three hours. Or more.

  122. 19:08 Commentary  

    Could you refresh your page, please? I’m Jonathan Stevenson, and I’m the lucky one who gets to present to you our coverage of the Netherlands v Spain, the final of the 19th World Cup.

  123. Contributor BBC Sport's Lee Dixon  

    "I'm trying to build a case for the Netherlands to win the game and it's very difficult. Spain are in such good form and their ability on the ball is unmatched. The Dutch do have match-winners in Arjen Robben, Wesley Sneijder and Robin van Persie, though - they'll need all three to turn it on for them to have a chance tonight."

  124. 19:11 Commentary  

    Now then, as I gave a World Cup final Stevo predo to a Russian website earlier, I think it's only fair I give the same one to you guys. Here we go:

    Netherlands 1-2 Spain

  125. Contributor BBC Sport's Paul Fletcher at Soccer City, Johannesburg:  

    "The waiting is almost over. The warm-ups are over and the next time we see them it will be a matter of minutes before the action begins. Tried to keep an eye on Torres. Couldn't really say with any degree of authority that he has been struggling."

  126. 19:15 Commentary  

    Italy 2006 World Cup-winning captain Fabio Cannavaro emerges on to the pitch at Soccer City, carrying the Fifa World Cup Trophy in a case. It's an official handover from old champions to new, if you like.

  127. 19:18 Commentary  

    It's now or never: you call. I'm around on Twitter @Stevo_football; I get texts on 81111 (UK) and +44 7786200666 (worldwide); and there's a 606 page too. Oh goodness me, the World Cup final teams are in the tunnel.

  128. Contributor BBC Radio 5 live's Graham Taylor  

    "We haven't seen the best of Van Persie yet but he is a key player for the Dutch. When he plays for Arsenal he gets the ball whenever he asks for it. For the Netherlands that isn't the case because they have other great individuals like Sneijder and Robben - and you can see Van Persie gets very frustrated by that. People say he doesn't care about playing for his country like he does for his club, but that's not the case. The two teams just play in very different ways and he has a big role to play for both."

  129. 19:20 Commentary Netherlands coach Bert van Marwijk:  

    “I have been coach for two years and I have often thought I would love to play Spain, who I think have been the best footballing country of the last few years, and it is happening now. It is unbelievable. It is the most important match in my football life and that applies to all the players. It is an extraordinary situation. No Dutch player has ever been a world champion."

  130. 19:21 Commentary Spain coach Vicente del Bosque:  

    “I don't think the Netherlands will change its way of playing just because it is up against Spain. I don't believe in any way there will be a change in their script, in what they are thinking of doing. I don't think so. We both have our scripts written and we shouldn't veer from them.”

  131. 19:23 Commentary  

    Referee Howard Webb of England leads the Netherlands, skippered by Giovanni van Bronckhorst and Spain, captained by Iker Casillas, out on to the pitch at Soccer City. As is the custom in South Africa, Webb picks up the Jabulani ball from the plinth, and the teams line up for the national anthems. Only difference is this time they are standing either side of the Fifa World Cup Trophy.

  132. 19:27 Commentary  

    I just had goosebumps for four minutes. It's shiver down the spine stuff in Johannesburg, and we're moments away from the World Cup final.

  133. SMS  

    From Simon: "Cheers for your prediction Stevo. Got money on a 2-1 Spain win, you've just lost me money!"

  134. 19:30 KICK-OFF Netherlands v Spain  

    At Soccer City, Wesley Sneijder and Robin van Persie get us under way. The atmosphere's pretty good.

  135. 2 mins Commentary  

    First clumsy tackle of the evening and no, it's not Mark van Bommel. Robin van Persie catches Sergio Busquets, and the Dutch have had a little more of the very early stages.

  136. 3 mins Commentary  

    First sniff of an opening for David Villa, but he's correctly adjudged to be half a yard offside from Pedro's almost brilliant pass.

  137. 5 mins Commentary  

    That's a proper chance - and a proper save from Maaretn Stekelenburg. Xavi whips a free-kick in from the Spain right and Sergio Ramos bravely gets there first, powering a header goalwards that the big Dutch stopper does well to turn away to his right.

  138. Contributor BBC Radio 5 live's Chris Waddle  

    "It's the midfield where this match is going to be decided. Van Bommel and De Jong are already getting very tight to Xavi and Iniesta. If the Dutch are going to have any chance they can't let Spain settle on the ball. Spain have made the more confident start and they're already drawing a lot of fouls. But there's a long way to go yet."

  139. Twitter  

    From xenoflits: "Van Bronckhorst plays his final match of his career, it would be lovely if he could end this as a world champion."

  140. 8 mins Commentary  

    Horrible touch from Sergio Busquets in a very dangerous place for Spain, but Dirk Kuyt's shot from 30 yards bounces safely into the arms of Iker Casillas.

  141. Contributor BBC Sport's Mark Lawrenson  

    "Just a little bit nervy the Netherlands at the moment."

  142. Contributor BBC Sport's Paul Fletcher at Soccer City, Johannesburg:  

    "All Spain so far, playing at a slightly higher tempo than the games I have seen of them previously in South Africa. A few early crunching tackles have provided our very own Howard Webb with the opportunity to stamp his authority on the occasion." 

  143. 12 mins Commentary  

    Iker Casillas admitted he was feeling nervous in the build-up, and there are hints some of his team-mates are too as Sergio Ramos nearly throws the ball straight to Dirk Kuyt only for Carles Puyol to intervene. At the other end, Ramos goes past Dirk Kuyt only for John Heitinga to whack away inside his own six-yard box, and a moment later David Villa volleys into the side-netting from an angle on the left.

  144. 14 mins YELLOW CARD  

    OK, who had 14 minutes? Mark van Bommel commits his first foul of the evening (he might not commit any more, fair point), going in late on former Barca colleague Carles Puyol. Robin van Persie is then booked by Howard Webb for a late challenge on Joan Capdevila, his second of the night.

  145. 16 mins YELLOW CARD  

    And now Howard Webb flashes yellow at Carles Puyol for catching Arjen Robben on his ankle. It's got potential to be niggly, this one. Let's hope not.

  146. Contributor BBC Radio 5 live's Chris Waddle  

    "The Netherlands beat Brazil en route to the final so they have nothing to fear tonight. But they've got no answers so far; Spain are dominating in all areas and the Dutch can't cope with their movement. I want to see the Netherlands working the ball through midfield because at the moment they're flinging it straight from defence to attack - I don't think Van Bommel's had a touch yet - and it's coming straight back at them."

  147. 606  

    Form PanasonicVieira: "Funny enough, this is a typically slow start from the Dutch in this World Cup. But they always seem to come up with something later on. They'll need to step it up though, otherwise they'll get caned."

  148. 20 mins Commentary  

    The Dutch are giving the ball away a bit too much at the moment. Spain haven't quite got into their very best rhythm, but it won't be long coming if they keep getting it back so often.

  149. 22 mins YELLOW CARD  

    The most obvious booking of the final, right there. Mark van Bommel loses his head for a second and slides straight through the back of Andres Iniesta. No choice for Howard Webb there, Now Sergio Ramos is cautioned for fouling Dirk Kuyt. Webb's life getting harder by the second in Johannesburg.

  150. Contributor BBC Sport's Paul Fletcher at Soccer City, Johannesburg:  

    "Robben, Sneijder, Van Persie - all peripheral figures at the moment in this match. Dirk Kuyt versus Sergio Ramos has been something of a mismatch so far."

  151. 25 mins Commentary  

    Traditional football shirt-numbering fans might like to know that the Netherlands line-up in a classic 1 to 11 formation. Our friends at Infostrada Sports tell us this is the first time this has happened in a World Cup final since squad numbers were introduced in 1954.

  152. Contributor BBC Sport's Mark Lawrenson  

    "Slowly but surely the Netherlands are getting back into it - without creating a great deal. A few half-chances early on aside, though, not a huge amount has happened in either box to be fair."

  153. 29 mins YELLOW CARD  

    Weight of pass from both teams is lacking a bit at the moment as the ball continues to go astray from orange and dark blue shirts. Oh what's this? Nigel de Jong is the fifth man in the book for a chest-high boot on Xabi Alonso. Crikey.

  154. 32 mins Commentary  

    I'd say at the moment Pedro almost looks Spain's liveliest player, along with Sergio Ramos anyway. Meanwhile, you'll be glad to know Xabi Alonso is back on the pitch. Andres Iniesta's pass is off target, that doesn't happy very often. Nervy.

  155. Contributor BBC Sport's Guy Mowbray  

    "My word, you see that on the replay and you have to say Nigel de Jong is so, so lucky to still be on the pitch after that - what do you call it? - karate kick on Xabi Alonso."

  156. 34 mins Commentary  

    Too many stoppages for the game to flow properly at the moment. I'm not blaming Howard Webb, but it is getting quite niggly. He gives a free-kick for a non-foul on Arjen Robben, before the Dutch almost score when the ball takes a horrible bounce as they try and give it back to Spain after an injury stoppage. Iker Casillas is at full stretch to feather it behind, but the Netherlands give the corner straight to the Spanish captain.

  157. Contributor BBC Radio 5 live's Graham Taylor  

    "That was a sending-off offence. If you go into an opponent's chest with studs you're asking for trouble and De Jong has got off lightly there. The game has lost any edge, lost some pace. The Netherlands have stopped Spain from dominating but they haven't taken control themselves. For me, the match is at a very iffy stage."

  158. 37 mins Commentary  

    Yeah, this game needs a goal. They are both just cancelling each other out, there's very little quality football going on. The Dutch play a corner to the edge of the box and Mark van Bommel scuffs his shot into the path of Joris Mathijsen eight yards out, but his contact is even less clean.

  159. 38 mins Commentary  

    Pedro collects the ball inside the centre-circle and runs at the Dutch backline, but his left-foot shot from 25 yards is well wide of Maarten Stekelenburg's left-hand post. Good intent from the forward.

  160. Contributor BBC Radio 5 live's Chris Waddle  

    "These teams are cancelling each other out and it's not making for a great spectacle. They've both formulated gameplans and the Netherlands' - to stifle Spain's creative midfielders - is proving especially effective. The problem is they have nothing going forward. This game is crying out for a goal."

  161. 42 mins Commentary  

    There's a nasty collision between Wesley Sneijder and Sergio Busquets inside the Netherlands half and Sneijder gets a ticking off from Howard Webb. Spain have started knocking it around a bit better in the last few minutes, before Xabio Alonso hits a ridiculously optimistic free-kick wide from about 45 yards.

  162. 44 mins Commentary  

    People in the crowd are going inside for their half-time refreshments. It's the World Cup final, but it's getting desperate.

  163. Contributor BBC Sport's Mark Lawrenson  

    "The players are really not making this easy for (referee) Howard Webb are they?"

  164. 45 mins INJURY TIME  

    We'll have two minutes of first-half stoppage time at Soccer City.

  165. 45 mins Commentary  

    A shot, a save! The ball falls to Arjen Robben on the right-hand corner of the penalty area and his left-foot strike is parried away from his near post by Iker Casillas. We'll take what we can get.

  166. 20:17 HALF-TIME Netherlands 0-0 Spain  

    A somewhat muted response to Howard Webb's half-time whistle. Put it this way - it's not going down as a classic, not at this stage anyway.

  167. Contributor BBC Sport's Paul Fletcher at Soccer City, Johannesburg:  

    "I don't think the Dutch backline has looked all that solid. The thing is, it has not been tested that much. I'm probably not allowed to say this because I am talking about a World Cup final, but it all feels a little flat and underwhelming at the moment."

  168. Contributor BBC Sport's Alan Hansen  

    "Total Football? Total thuggery more like. Mark van Bommel should have been sent off, probably Nigel de Jong too, maybe even Wesley Sneijder as well."

  169. Contributor BBC Sport's Alan Shearer  

    "If this had been a group game, the Netherlands would probably already be down to nine men - at least."

  170. 606  

    From coolhandpaul: "I think Webb's doing his best to not have to send anybody off and it's calmed down a bit, but still wouldn't be surprised if somebody walked before the end."

  171. Contributor BBC Sport's Lee Dixon  

    "From a spectacle point of view, you have to say the Dutch have ruined it. They've done well to react after Spain's dominant opening, but they're killing the game."

  172. 20:27 Commentary  

    So, Spain have managed to go through their entire World Cup campaign without conceding a goal in the first half. Nice one. Meanwhile, er, how do I put this, let's have a shout out to Caroline, Victoria, Anna and Daniel, who were apparently in the middle of an actual hurricane in Lucerne, Switzerland on Saturday and may be lucky to be watching the World Cup final at all. Though they might not feel like that right at this moment.

  173. Contributor BBC Radio 5 live's Graham Taylor  

    "I thought the game would go one of two ways - either it would be open and exciting or the teams would cancel each other out. Sadly, we've got the latter. The team that wins won't care but I'm afraid that was a pretty horrible 45 minutes."

  174. SMS  

    Mark in Berlin: "The Dutch gameplan is simply to kick the life and proverbial balls out of Spain. Even though there were lots of cards, it is proving effective."

  175. 20:32 Commentary Netherlands 0-0 Spain  

    Back under way inside Soccer City in Johannesburg. Can't be any worse, can it? The person who's probably most pleased about how it's going is young Germany forward Thomas Mueller, who leads the race for the Golden Shoe right now. He's got five, but he's in the lead by virtue of having three assists.

  176. Contributor BBC Sport's Clarence Seedorf  

    "The Dutch aggression is their tactics, I think. They've been committing a lot of fouls and they are lucky not to have received a couple of red cards, I have to say. Spain started well but after 15 minutes the Netherlands reshaped and since then all we've seen is fouls and tension. Both teams are tactically perfect in defence at the moment - but let's see what happens when they need a goal."

  177. 46 mins Commentary  

    Arjen Robben turns beautifully away from Xabi Alonso inside the Spain half, but his slide-rule pass to Robin van Persie is just too strong for the Arsenal striker.

  178. 48 mins Commentary  

    What a chance. What. A. Chance. Xavi drifts a corner over from the right and semi-final hero Carles Puyol glances towards the back post where Joan Capdevila completely mis-kicks three yards out.

  179. 50 mins Commentary  

    The Netherlands' turn to attack as Gregory van der Wiel does well to get forward down their right, but his cross along the six-yard box is a good 10 yards ahead of any Dutch forwards and Spain clear comfortably. It's a little livelier, though.

  180. 52 mins Commentary  

    Arjen Robben hits a speculative left-footer from 30 yards, but Iker Casillas is paying attention and saves low down to his left.

  181. Contributor BBC Sport's Mark Lawrenson  

    "That was the best Dutch move of the match, certainly, but the trouble was that it happened so fast the Netherlands failed to get any players into the box. Shame."

  182. 54 mins YELLOW CARD  

    Giovanni van Bronckhorst is booked for sticking his arm out and bringing Sergio Ramos about 25 yards from the Dutch goal. Chance, this.

  183. 55 mins Commentary  

    Xavi gets it up and over the wall, but it's about two feet too high and two feet too wide and Maarten Stekelenburg lets it go past.

  184. Contributor BBC Sport's Guy Mowbray  

    "The first signs here that this is starting to open up..."

  185. 56 mins YELLOW CARD  

    The Spaniards are furious and there is more for Howard Webb to sort out. John Heitinga kicks David Villa after the ball has gone and Webb has no choice but to flash yellow once more. The players are not making this easy.

  186. 58 mins Commentary  

    Andres Iniesta fouls Wesley Sneijder and thankfully Howard Webb keeps his cards in his pocket this time. I think Webb's done well, most of the yellows so far have been warranted. In fact, he's probably trying hard to keep it 11 v 11. The players aren't.

  187. 61 mins SUBSTITUTION  

    Hello width. Pedro is taken off for Spain and tricky Sevilla winger Jesus Navas is on in his place. Seconds later, Robin van Persie heads Dirk Kuyt's cross from the Dutch left over, under pressure from Carles Puyol.

  188. 62 mins Commentary  

    Biggest moment of the match. Wesley Sneijder, on halfway, manages to slip a pass forward that Gerard Pique slightly misjudges and suddenly Arjen Robben is clean through. Time seems to stand still as Robben gets in on his trusty left boot, but after picking his spot Iker Casillas makes a brilliant save with his legs.

  189. Contributor BBC Sport's Mark Lawrenson  

    "That, for me, goes down as a stunning save. Arjen Robben waited until the very last moment before trying to clip it in, but Iker Casillas stayed big and deflected it wide with a boot. Brilliant."

  190. SMS  

    From Mark D: "It's a remake of the Germany v Argentina 1990 final!"

  191. Contributor BBC Radio 5 live's Graham Taylor  

    "The second half has been no different to the first so far. Very poor. The Dutch players are 'putting themselves about' in football terms. Quite frankly, I can't see this game finishing without a red card or two."

  192. 66 mins SUBSTITUTION  

    As a chance so nearly falls for Andres Iniesta inside the Dutch penalty area, the game is just showing signs of opening up a little. And as soon as I type that Joan Capdevila is booked for clipping the heels of Robin van Persie. He's the eighth caution of the contest.

  193. 70 mins Commentary  

    David Villa, who has had to feed off scraps today, is flagged offside as he chases a ball into the Dutch half. Moments later, he's got his hands on his head. Jesus Navas' cross from the right is missed by John Heitinga  and it falls to Villa, who sees his shot hit the leg of a grounded Heitinga and fly over the bar.

  194. 71 mins SUBSTITUTION  

    The Netherlands take off Dirk Kuyt and send on winger Eljero Elia.

  195. 606  

    From Luxinho: "This has got 'last-minute heart-breaker' written all over it!"

  196. 74 mins Commentary  

    Free-kick to Spain, 25 yards out. David Villa promptly spoons it over and wide for good measure.

  197. 76 mins Commentary  

    Our friends at Infostrada Sports tell us that Howard Webb joins hat-trick hero Sir Geoff Hurst in setting a World Cup final record. John Heitinga's yellow card way back when was the seventh of this match, breaking the record for a World Cup final. Webb went ahead of Brazilian referee Romuald Arppi Filho who showed six cards in the 1986 final.

  198. 77 mins Commentary  

    After Arjen Robben's miss, that's one apiece in the gilt-edged stakes. A Spain corner finds Sergio Ramos unmarked, six yards out in the middle of the area, but he can only power a header over. A minute later he still has his hands on his head.

  199. Contributor BBC Sport's Mark Lawrenson  

    "There's no-one near him - nobody near him at all. At the very least he has to hit the target. Oh my goodness."

  200. 80 mins Commentary  

    Spain are cranking it up a bit at Soccer City, they look the likelier of the two teams to nick a late winner at the moment. Some gaps are starting to open up for them, and even Xavi is pushing on more.

  201. 81 mins Commentary  

    Definite gaps. Andres Iniesta jinks his way into the Dutch area down the left and he is only prevented from shooting by a desperate though excellent challenge from Wesley Sneijder.

  202. 83 mins Commentary  

    More gaps. Arjen Robben does Carles Puyol for pace, burning past the defender as they chased a flick on into the Spain half and with Puyol trying to haul Robben back, he stays on his feet, only to be met by Iker Casillas, who races off his line to gather. Robben races up to Howard Webb and demands a free-kick - to be fair to the Bayern winger, he's been penalised for staying on his feet there. Unlucky.

  203. Contributor BBC Sport's Guy Mowbray  

    "The game is more open now than it has been at any stage so far."

  204. 86 mins Commentary  

    Goodness it's tense. Worth remembering that neither of these countries has won a World Cup before, so you can forgive them their nerves I'm sure.

  205. 87 mins SUBSTITUTION  

    Real Madrid midfielder Xabi Alonso is taken off by Spain and on comes Cesc Fabregas in his place.

  206. Contributor BBC Radio 5 live's Chris Waddle  

    "Spain are getting stronger and stronger, Xavi's seeing more and more of the ball, and the Netherlands are out on their feet. That said, Robben's had two glorious opportunities so, despite Spain's dominance, this could yet go either way."

  207. Contributor BBC Sport's Paul Fletcher at Soccer City, Johannesburg:  

    "This has been a bad-tempered match featuring plenty of frustrated players yet the second half has seen some clear openings and a definite increase in tension."

  208. 90 mins OFFSIDE  

    Wesley Sneijder slips in Robin van Persie and he rounds Iker Casillas, but the flag has long since gone up. We're heading for some extras in Johannesburg.

  209. Contributor BBC Radio 5 live's Graham Taylor  

    "This is a great opportunity for Fabregas to show to his manager he should be an automatic selection. What a player to be able to bring off the bench."

  210. 90 mins INJURY TIME  

    Three minutes to find a winner, or we are in extra-time. Don't hold your breath.

  211. 21:21 FULL-TIME Netherlands 0-0 Spain  

    The Dutch dispossess Xavi, but they don't seem overly interested in breaking with pace and instead Wesley Sneijder shoots tamely wide from 45 yards. It's our last action of the 90 minutes. Duh duh duuuuuh.

  212. 21:23 Commentary  

    Of the 84,490 inside Soccer City, you will not find a more gutted man than Dutch winger Arjen Robben. As soon as the whistle went he had his hands on his head again, presumably still distraught by that miss on 62 minutes. Ryan Babel goes across to have a comforting word.

  213. Contributor BBC Sport's Alan Hansen  

    "I'm desperate for Spain to win. They've been a credit to football having been kicked up and down the pitch for 90 minutes but never having strayed from their footballing philosophy."

  214. 21:25 EXTRA-TIME Netherlands 0-0 Spain  

    World Cup final, extra-time. Extra-time, World Cup final. Been here before. Back under way in Johannesburg.

  215. Contributor BBC Sport's Alan Shearer  

    "Look, you've got two teams playing to their strengths. If the Dutch had tried to match Spain pass-for-pass they'd have got destroyed. Yes, they should perhaps be down to nine or even eight men after those fouls in the first half, but they have at least stuck to their gameplan - and they remain right bang in this match."

  216. 92 mins Commentary  

    The Spanish bench are furious because they want a penalty for John Heitinga's foul on Xavi inside the box. Howard Webb points to the corner spot instead.

  217. Contributor BBC Sport's Mark Lawrenson  

    "Nope, Howard Webb has got that right once again. Xavi - if anything - has kicked into Jonny Heitinga's foot. No penalty for me."

  218. 95 mins Commentary  

    Now it's Cesc Fabregas's turn to be distraught. He runs on to a perfectly weighted through ball from Andres Iniesta and it looks all the world as though he has to score, but the Arsenal captain's shot is blocked brilliantly by Maarten Stekelenburg.

  219. 96 mins Commentary  

    Trading wastefulness now. A Netherlands corner falls perfectly on to the head of Joris Mathijsen, but he can only nod over. Got to hit the target.

  220. SMS  

    From Torresjustbrilliant: "This is tense. Can we get a camera on the octopus? Is he twitching?"

  221. 99 mins SUBSTITUTION  

    Andres Iniesta gets himself on to a pass forward and he's got a great shooting chance, but the Barca man dallies for too long and Gio van Bronckhorst gets in a vital and timely interception. The Dutch bring on Rafael van der Vaart for Nigel de Jong, an attacking change.

  222. Contributor BBC Radio 5 live's Chris Waddle  

    "Spain look by far the more likely to win this. They're enjoying much more possession and are certainly going to create more chances as extra-time wears on. They're getting closer and closer."

  223. 101 mins Commentary  

    How is it still 0-0 now? Jesus Navas gets into space down the Spain right and surges into the area - his shot takes a wicked deflection off Gio van Bronckhorst and flies into the side-netting. Could've gone anywhere.

  224. 104 mins Commentary  

    Top stuff from Cesc Fabregas, once again injecting life and pace into the Spanish play. He races forward from halfway, committing defenders in the process and eventually shooting a couple of yards wide from just outside the box.

  225. 105 mins SUBSTITUTION  

    Good round of applause for Gio van Bronckhorst as he walks off a football pitch for the last time and is replaced by Edson Braafheid. Into first half of extra-time injury time, quite a mouthful if you'll excuse me.

  226. 21:41 HALF-TIME Netherlands 0-0 Spain  

    Don't go anywhere, these change-arounds are spectacularly rapido.

  227. Twitter  

    From footy_fever: "Spain are much more effective in front of goal in extra it Fabregas or the Dutch's stamina?"

  228. 21:44 SUBSTITUTION Netherlands 0-0 Spain  

    We are back under way - but Spain have made a change, bringing on a certain Fernando Torres for David Villa. Big one that for Vicente del Bosque.

  229. Contributor BBC Sport's Mark Lawrenson  

    "I just think now Spain have one last ace in the pack and that's Fernando Torres."

  230. 108 mins Commentary  

    To say footballers are supposed to hate penalty shootouts, they don't half seem to play for them a lot. The Dutch are content to knock it around and take the ultimate sporting lottery, it seems.

  231. Contributor BBC Radio 5 live's Graham Taylor  

    "The combination of Fabregas, Iniesta and Xavi can open up the Dutch defence and Spain will get more opportunities to win it before penalties. People criticise Spain for wasting so many chances - and it's easy to see why tonight - but there's still time yet."

  232. 110 mins RED CARD John Heitinga (Netherlands)  

    It was only a matter of time, but it's controversial. Andres Iniesta plays a one-two and latches on to the return, but he goes down under a challenge from Heitinga, who is shown his second yellow of the game by Howard Webb. Xavi slams the free-kick over the bar.

  233. Contributor BBC Sport's Mark Lawrenson  

    "The arm was on the shoulder and once you raise your arms you're asking for trouble."

  234. 111 mins YELLOW CARD  

    Now Gregory van der Wiel is into the book for another late challenge on Andres Iniesta.

  235. 113 mins OFFSIDE  

    Arjen Robben is flagged offside and the Spaniards crowd around Howard Webb trying to get him booked for playing on after the whistle. It's unseemly and unnecessary. Someone score - games this big shouldn't go to penalties.

  236. 115 mins Commentary  

    Wesley Sneijder's free-kick from 35 yards takes a big deflection off Cesc Fabregas, but Howard Webb gives a goalkick. They show it on the big screen at Soccer City. Why?

  237. 116 mins GOAL Netherlands 0-1 Spain  

    Spain might have just won the World Cup. Fernando Torres gets the ball on the left and clips a cross into the box. It is half cleared to Cesc Fabregas and he finds Andres Iniesta in the area - the little Barca magician takes a touch before volleying past Maarten Stekelenburg. He whips his shirt off and the Spaniards have gone mental.

  238. 119 mins Commentary  

    The Dutch, who have lost two World Cup finals before, have a matter of seconds left to get themselves back into this one. Time is slipping away.

  239. 120 mins Commentary  

    We're into added time at the end of extra-time. The board goes up - WE'VE GOT TWO MORE MINUTES!!

  240. Contributor BBC Sport's Guy Mowbray  

    "You just wonder if Spain can keep their heads. Iker Casillas and Gerard Pique both broke down in tears when that goal went in - it's emotional times but Spain need to hold it together here."

  241. Contributor BBC Radio 5 live's Chris Waddle  

    "Howard Webb had better run straight off at full time because he'll be surrounded by orange otherwise."

  242. 120 mins Commentary  

    Arjen Robben pumps the ball into the Spain box but it's cleared. Seconds left, and I can't feel my hands.

  243. 22:02 FULL-TIME Netherlands 0-1 Spain  


  244. 22:03 Commentary  

    Do all football matches have to end like this? Mark van Bommel gets straight into the face of Howard Webb on the final whistle, it's horrible to see stuff like that. Iker Casillas, meanwhile, is bawling his eyes out. Spain have won the World Cup. Wow.

  245. 22:05 Commentary  

    Add: I don't think there's a player on the pitch that isn't crying.

  246. Contributor BBC Radio 5 live's Chris Waddle  

    "It was a terrible final. Howard Webb's done his best to keep hold of the match but the Netherlands were out of control. It's a shame that the match was so poor, but Spain are worthy champions."

  247. Contributor BBC Sport's Alan Hansen  

    "I'm all for teams going into matches with a gameplan, but I just don't think there is any place in football for the way the Netherlands approached this match. They kicked the opposition up and down the pitch for 120 minutes - but in the end, Andres Iniesta ensured World Cup glory went the right way, to Spain."

  248. 22:08 Commentary  

    The Spain players go over to a massive group of their fans in one corner of Soccer City and they are leaping and dancing around and hugging each other. Just over two years ago, Spain were the biggest disappointment in international football. Now they are the reigning European champions and World Cup winners.

  249. Contributor BBC Sport's Lee Dixon  

    "In the cold light of day we might find that Howard Webb has made a mistake in allowing the winning goal - but let's be honest, the right team won and the best player on the pitch scored it. That's got to be justice, hasn't it?"

  250. 22:11 Commentary  

    The Spain players have quick-smart changed out of their dark blue shirts and into their more familiar red ones for the glory shots of them lifting the trophy.

  251. Contributor BBC Sport's Clarence Seedorf  

    "During the first 90 minutes the match was quite balanced, but in extra time Spain certainly were the better side. They are worthy winners."

  252. 22:13 Commentary  

    As referee Howard Webb goes up the steps to collect his medal from Fifa president Sepp Blatter and South Africa president Jacob Zuma, he is in no doubt as to what the Dutch fans think of him. Boos all round.

  253. 22:14 Commentary  

    Now it's the turn of the Netherlands players. You've got to feel sorry for them for getting so close, but the better team did win today, there can't be any doubt about that.

  254. 22:15 Commentary  

    Here come the World Cup winners: Spain.

  255. 22:18 Commentary  

    Iker Casillas climbs up the steps last and the Spain captain, still only 29 but with well over 100 caps, collects the Fifa World Cup Trophy. He holds it aloft, and Spain are champions of the world. I've never known goosebumps like it. Incredible.

  256. 22:20 Commentary  

    The Spain players, on a specially made podium at Soccer City, are lapping up their moment. As a sportsman, this is the pinnacle - and they are going to squeeze every last drop out of that World Cup Trophy. I wouldn't be surprised if Iker Casillas sleeps with it tonight, you know. I would.

  257. Contributor BBC Sport's Mark Lawrenson  

    "I think it's been a decent World Cup, not the best we've seen. But what there can be no doubt whatsoever about is that the best footballing team in South Africa have - rightfully - emerged as winners. Congratulations Spain."

  258. 22:25 Commentary  

    What seems like about a million Spanish journalists are singing and dancing along to Shakira in the aisles, some of them still have tears in their eyes. As for Shakira's World Cup song, I don't think I'd get bored of it if it was on a loop for the next 70 years of my life. Stunning fireworks erupt from the roof at Soccer City, a spectacular finale to the tournament that is truly the greatest show on earth.

  259. Contributor BBC Radio 5 live's Chris Waddle  

    "You associate beautiful football with the Dutch and that is the first time I have ever seen them play like that. I don't think too many people will be impressed with the Netherlands. It might not have been the best final but Spain have been the best side for the last three years and have always tried to play the game in the right way. Fair play."

  260. 22:28 Commentary  

    Let's wrap a couple of things up: Spain have won the World Cup with eight goals, the fewest by three after Brazil in 1994 and England in 1966. Three men bagged for La Roja - David Villa with five, Andres Iniesta with a brace and Carles Puyol with one.

  261. 22:31 Commentary  

    Predictable news just in: Riotous celebrations are spreading across Spain. An estimated 300,000 people forming a sea of red and yellow packed Madrid's downtown Paseo de Recoletos boulevard to watch the match live on giant TV  screens and erupted at the final whistle. Fireworks lit up the city sky as people herded out onto the streets to celebrate.

  262. 22:32 Commentary  

    Uruguay's Diego Forlan has been named the best player of the 2010 World Cup, taking home the Golden Ball in the process.

  263. Contributor BBC Sport's Paul Fletcher at Soccer City, Johannesburg:  

    "The pitch at Soccer City is the scene of plenty of high-speed pursuits as photographers chase after celebrating players. Still, not as risky as fans charging the pitch. A bloke did that a minute or so again and was quickly floored."

  264. 22:35 Commentary  

    Also, Germany's Thomas Mueller has won the Golden Shoe award for top scorer, finishing on five goals but winning by virtue of his three assists.

  265. 22:37 Commentary  

    Oh, and New Zealand were the only team to remain unbeaten throughout their World Cup campaign, one of my favourite facts from this or any tournament. It's yours for free.

  266. 22:41 Commentary  

    Andres Iniesta: footballer of rare skill, World Cup final matchwinner and cracking human being to boot. When he peeled off his t-shirt, his vest bore the words "Dani Jarque is always with us". If that doesn't get the emotions going, nothing will.

  267. 22:43 Commentary  

    Blimey Thomas Mueller, let someone else win something, won't you?! The fabulously talented German has only gone and walked off with the Best Young Player award as well as the Golden Shoe, hasn't he? Hero.

  268. 22:46 Commentary  

    There will be controversy over Spain's winner, unfortunately. The Dutch should have absolutely 100% had a corner when Wesley Sneijder's free-kick hit Cesc Fabregas and went behind, it was a poor decision from Howard Webb to give a goalkick. Then a few seconds later in the build-up to the goal, the Netherlands felt Eljero Elia was fouled. It's a shame, but what can you do?

  269. SMS  

    Alex in Notts: "(See 15:00) Looks like your nephew Nathan was bang on, Stevo!"

    Haha. Nothing that boy can't do!

  270. 22:52 Commentary Spain coach Vicente del Bosque:  

    "It was a very difficult game but we have some fantastic players who knew how to respond to the problems. They had a few chances but we had clear ones. We owe this to a great group of players."

  271. 22:55 Commentary Spain's Andres Iniesta:  

    "It's unbelievable, incredible. It cost a lot of energy. To win a World Cup is an indescribable feeling. This was our work that we started a long time ago, it was hard work, but we're savouring this now."

  272. 606  

    From 1stplaythenwin: "Germany were very good, just too early for some of the young players this time. Spain were the best team and they did deserve to win the World Cup."

  273. 23:00 Commentary  

    Do you think if I hide I'll be able to just live in Soccer City? I don't want to leave. The last few Spanish fans are dribbling outside to go and celebrate with the hordes of their countrymen, and by the sounds of it, the party is already in full swing. San Miguels all round, senor. Vamos!

  274. Twitter  

    From klovescoffee: "You should find an excuse for a layover in Spain on your way back to England."

    Now then, that's almost as good an idea as hiding. Almost.

  275. 23:08 Commentary  

    Is is with a heavy heart that I must bid you a fond farewell from Soccer City in Johannesburg. The 19th World Cup, the first in Africa, has given us an eighth champion, and few will begrudge that, over the past month and 64 games, SPAIN were the best team. I'm Jonathan Stevenson, and this has been the experience of a lifetime. See you soon.

By Paul Fletcher, Johannesburg

Andres Iniesta struck a dramatic winner late in extra time to give Spain World Cup glory for the first time but condemned the Netherlands to their third defeat in a final.

Iniesta drilled his right-foot strike across goal - but the Dutch were incensed after referee Howard Webb had failed to award their side a corner moments earlier when a free-kick took a sizeable deflection off Cesc Fabregas.

However, Euro 2008 champions Spain, who conceded only two goals during the tournament, deserved their victory after gradually taking a grip on a tense and bad-tempered contest that produced 14 yellow cards with Johnny Heitinga sent off on 109 minutes after picking up a second yellow card.

The Dutch, who lost in the 1974 and 1978 finals, were bidding to become the first side since Brazil in 1970 to go through World Cup qualifying and the finals unbeaten.

They had a glorious chance to take the lead in the second half but Arjen Robben, comfortably his team's most potent attacking weapon, could find no way past Spain captain Iker Casillas, who slumped to the floor and cried tears of joy after the final whistle.

Sergio Ramos was equally culpable of a glaring miss for Spain when he headed over and substitute Fabregas, as with Robben before him, also failed to convert a one-on-one chance.

But it was from a through ball by the influential Fabregas that midfielder Iniesta struck making Spain the first team to win a World Cup after losing their opening game of the tournament.

Spain also became the team to win the World Cup having scored the fewest number of goals - finding the net eight times in their seven matches. The previous mark was held by three teams, including England in 1966.

The dramatic finale at Soccer City was in stark contrast to a hugely underwhelming opening 45 minutes, which was a brutal disappointment after the spectacular opening ceremony and moving appearance by former president Nelson Mandela that had preceded it.

Spain dominated possession in the opening minutes and looked to have the measure of an uncertain Dutch backline. Ramos almost put them ahead after just four minutes but his thunderous header was brilliantly saved by Maarten Stekelenburg.

The Netherlands could not get a grip on the game but were helped by a spate of yellow cards from referee Webb that disturbed the rhythm of the match.

Webb booked five players in the opening 28 minutes, although several crude challenges left him with little option.

Dutch enforcer Mark van Bommel was booked after going through the back of Iniesta, while Nigel de Jong was lucky to escape red after planting his foot in the chest of Xabi Alonso.

Robben did force a decent save from Casillas with a low left-foot strike after cutting inside during stoppage time.

But the match had degenerated to the extent that Alonso opted to shoot with a free-kick on the wrong side of 40 yards instead of a seeking out a team-mate.

Spain defender Joan Capdevila wasted a good chance shortly after the restart, failing to make contact with a Carles Puyol flick-on.

The bookings continued after the break and the contest occasionally threatened to boil over as the tension appeared to affect the players.

But there were also a few moments of real quality, none more so than a sumptuous through ball from the largely anonymous Wesley Sneijder that played Robben clean through on goal.

Robben delayed his shot but, equally, Casillas stood his ground as long as possible and brilliantly saved with his legs.

It was a head-in-hands moment for Robben, but one quickly followed for Spain when a completely unmarked Ramos headed a corner over the crossbar.

Robben's pace troubled the Spanish defence throughout and another burst from the Bayern Munich man unsettled Puyol, who appeared to impinge his opponent. Robben, just outside the penalty area, chose to stay on his feet and Casillas again denied him.

Spain had moved into the ascendancy as the match wore on, with Xavi increasingly influential.

Fabregas replaced Alonso in the 87th minute and quickly made an impression by collecting a superb Iniesta pass, but the Arsenal man could find no way beyond Stekelenberg, who saved brilliantly with his legs.

The complement was returned shortly afterwards but Iniesta opted not to strike from 18 yards and was eventually dispossessed by the excellent Gregory van der Wiel.

Heitinger became the fifth man to be sent off in a World Cup final when he pulled back Iniesta on the edge of the area, giving Webb little choice but to hand him a second caution, and that seemed to spur Spain on for a final effort.

Joris Mathijsen headed over for the Netherlands in what was their only good chance of the extra-time period before Iniesta struck his late and decisive blow.

Netherlands Netherlands Flag 0-1 Spain Flag Spain FT

(HT 0-0)

After Extra Time

 Iniesta, 116






  • Venue: Soccer City
  • Referee: Howard Webb
  • Attendance: 84,490
Netherlands     Spain
  • Possession 40%
  • Attempts on target 5
  • Attempts off target 6
  • Corners 6
  • Fouls 28

Projected table based on current scores

Group A

Group A teams P W D L F A GD PTS
Uruguay 3 2 1 0 4 0 4 7
Mexico 3 1 1 1 3 2 1 4
South Africa 3 1 1 1 3 5 -2 4
France 3 0 1 2 1 4 -3 1

Group B

Group B teams P W D L F A GD PTS
Argentina 3 3 0 0 7 1 6 9
South Korea 3 1 1 1 5 6 -1 4
Greece 3 1 0 2 2 5 -3 3
Nigeria 3 0 1 2 3 5 -2 1

Group C

Group C teams P W D L F A GD PTS
USA 3 1 2 0 4 3 1 5
England 3 1 2 0 2 1 1 5
Slovenia 3 1 1 1 3 3 0 4
Algeria 3 0 1 2 0 2 -2 1

Group D

Group D teams P W D L F A GD PTS
Germany 3 2 0 1 5 1 4 6
Ghana 3 1 1 1 2 2 0 4
Australia 3 1 1 1 3 6 -3 4
Serbia 3 1 0 2 2 3 -1 3

Group E

Group E teams P W D L F A GD PTS
Netherlands 3 3 0 0 5 1 4 9
Japan 3 2 0 1 4 2 2 6
Denmark 3 1 0 2 3 6 -3 3
Cameroon 3 0 0 3 2 5 -3 0

Group F

Group F teams P W D L F A GD PTS
Paraguay 3 1 2 0 3 1 2 5
Slovakia 3 1 1 1 4 5 -1 4
New Zealand 3 0 3 0 2 2 0 3
Italy 3 0 2 1 4 5 -1 2

Group G

Group G teams P W D L F A GD PTS
Brazil 3 2 1 0 5 2 3 7
Portugal 3 1 2 0 7 0 7 5
Ivory Coast 3 1 1 1 4 3 1 4
North Korea 3 0 0 3 1 12 -11 0

Group H

Group H teams P W D L F A GD PTS
Spain 3 2 0 1 4 2 2 6
Chile 3 2 0 1 3 2 1 6
Switzerland 3 1 1 1 1 1 0 4
Honduras 3 0 1 2 0 3 -3 1

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