FIFA World Cup 2014: Spain Defence Implodes in Heaviest Loss Since 1950

Updated: 14 June 2014 04:58 IST

A backline that helped Spain win their last three major tournaments was totally ripped to shreds in a 5-1 defeat by the Netherlands at the FIFA World Cup 2014 on Friday, as the defending champions tumbled to their heaviest competitive defeat since 1950.

FIFA World Cup 2014: Spain Defence Implodes in Heaviest Loss Since 1950
© AFP

Salvador:

Spain goalkeeper Iker Casillas crawled and scrambled in vain, Gerard Pique was beaten for pace and Sergio Ramos made a series of blunders.

Iker Casillas and Arjen Robben

© AFP

Whatever happened to Spain's usually rock-solid defense?

A backline that helped Spain win their last three major tournaments was totally ripped to shreds in a 5-1 defeat by the Netherlands at the World Cup on Friday, as the defending champions tumbled to their heaviest competitive defeat since 1950.

A howler by Casillas gifted Robin van Persie his second goal and the Real Madrid keeper was later on all fours as he tried to catch up with Arjen Robben as the Dutch winger waltzed through the Spain area before scoring his second of the night. (Match highlights)

Pique was easily rounded by Robben for his first goal and then outsprinted by the Dutchman for his second, despite having a clear head start on the 30-year-old midfielder.

Ramos, normally the beating heart of Spain's backline, could do nothing as his defence collapsed around him.

Spain's players left the Arena Fonte Nova pitch in disbelief, while coach Vicente del Bosque tried to maintain morale by encouraging his players at the final whistle. (Match in pics)

In one game, Spain conceded more goals than it did in its last two major tournaments combined.

Spain only conceded one goal as it retained its European championship title in 2012 and just two as it lifted the World Cup for the first time in 2010.

The European champion, which hadn't been beaten so humiliatingly since losing 6-1 to Brazil the last time the World Cup was played in this South American country, has little time to regroup in a tough Group B.

With Chile next on Wednesday, Del Bosque needs his team to rediscover its former defensive strengths.

Topics : Football
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