Full Time
Holland
0
 
1
Spain
 0-1A. Iniesta  116'
HT: 0-0
Soccer City (Attendance: 84,490)
Referee: Howard Webb
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Holland vs. Spain
Minute Commentary
124' THE WINNERS
And here they come, the eighth World Cup winners. Iker Casillas leads the jubilant Spaniards up the steps to another blast of those vuvuzelas. The golden generation, which has still got a few years left in them by the way, are officially the best team in the world. They passed their way to the final and, eventually, outpassed the brutes of Holland. Blatter and Jacob Zuma hand over the trophy to Casillas who grabs it and shakes it high in the air. The team are showered in ticker tape and pass the beautiful trophy among them. Absolutely wonderful for La Furia Roja who are worthy and deserving champions. That's it from us in Johannesburg where football is undoubtedly the winner. Not the best World Cup ever, but certainly one of the best winners in history. Full time at Soccer City, Holland 0 Spain 1.
124' LOSERS' MEDALS
Anguished faces all round as Holland pick up the medals nobody wants, led by Gio van Bronckhorst. They tried their best to win it their way, but eight players booked and one sent off tells its own story.
124' MEDAL WINNER
Howard Webb deserves more than a medal for what he's just been put through by the Dutch. The 38-year-old will be relieved it's all over, but he can still take some pride in his performance. To be fair, he tried his best to keep as many players on the pitch as possible, but it still roundly booed as he picks up his medal from Sepp Blatter.
124' THREE-TIME LOSERS
Sympathy for the Dutch will be in short supply but it's hard not to feel sorry for a nation which has now lost three World Cup finals. Arjen Robben too, Holland's best player by a county mile, deserves a mention for a stellar performance. He will, though, be remembered for a very long time for that golden, spurned chance on 62 minutes.
124' COME THROUGH ADVERSITY
And despite the best defensive efforts of Portugal, Paraguay, Germany and now Holland, Spain have overcome negativity to beat all of them by a single goal. And they, unlike Germany and Holland in particular, stayed true to themselves and played their football in the right way even up until 116 minutes into a World Cup final when they were pass, pass, passing away. Not once did they chuck it forward or resort to hacking down the opposition. Bravo, Espana.
124' DESERVING WINNERS
But enough of that - it's Spain's day and their players are beyond ecstatic. Many are in floods of tears and who can blame them. Their perennial underachiever tag is finally buried as they become only the third team to hold the titles of European and World champions simultaneously. Rarely has a team been more deserving of the tag of best in the world.
124' HOLLAND FUMING
The Oranje surround Webb at the whistle - they wanted more injury time but they won't get it now. Pretty cheeky for them to be arguing with the ref, considering they were extremely lucky to be down to just ten men after some horrendous indiscipline. Recriminations from that to come I'm sure.
123' FULL TIME
That's it!! Howard Webb blows his whistle and Spain are the world champions!
122' TORRES DOWN
A very sad sight - Fernando Torres is lay strewn on the turf in absolute agony. Looks like his hamstring has gone. It's not over yet.
122' LOST BELIEF?
Do Holland believe? I don't think so - they've got three players on the halfway line as the rest jangle for position in the box. Seconds to go.
121' HOOF
Big hoof into the box from Stekelenburg and then a cross from Robben, but amazingly there are only four orange shirts in the area and Spain clear.
121' BOOKING
Xavi kicks the ball away - booking. I've lost count now. Farcical.
120' ADDED TIME
Just two minutes added on for Holland to force penalties.
120' OVERDRIVE
The vuvuzelas are in overdrive and the Spanish bench can hardly contain themselves.
119' SMOTHERED
Elia tries to work something down the left but Spain smother the danger.
118' BOOKINGS
Surprise surprise - two more bookings before we even kick off again. Mathijsen for arguing with the linesman for a possible foul on Elia in the build-up, and then one for Iniesta for a shirt-off celebration.
116' HOLLAND 0-1 SPAIN
Four minutes to go and ANDRES INIESTA has surely just won the World Cup!! Amazing scenes in Johannesburg - a Torres clip into the box is cut out but Fabregas picks up the pieces and slots to Iniesta, who sets himself and drills past the despairing dive of Stekelenburg from the right of the area, 15 yards out.
115' BAD CALL
Another boo-boo from Webb who somehow misses the fact that a Sneijder free kick takes a huge deflection off the wall before dropping wide. Not even close to missing the wall, I'm afraid. He's had a very hard game to referee but Webb's errors are totting up.
113' LUCKY BOY
I mean really, where is the discipline? Arjen Robben is so, so fortunate to still be on the field, as is Mark van Bommel and as was Nigel de Jong before he was substituted. Robben, flagged and whistled miles offside from a through ball, plays on in full knowledge of the decision and puts the ball into the net. Howard Webb gives him a stern talking-to but no yellow card, going against the rules of the game to do so. Incredible.
111' BOOKING
Van der Wiel is Holland's seventh player to be booked, for a late one on that man Iniesta. It's bordering on farce now but it's certainly a disgrace, Holland's behaviour.
111' OVER THE BAR
Xavi clips the resulting free kick, from 20 yards, over the bar.
110' ABOUT TIME
In fact the only surprise is that it's taken this long for Holland to get a player sent off. They've now accumulated seven bookings between them, which alone beats the record for a World Cup final for two teams combined.
109' RED CARD!!
Classic tika-taka sets Iniesta through the middle. Players are covering but Heitinga pulls the Barcelona midfielder back. That's a second yellow card and therefore a red for Heitinga. Few complaints either.
108' NEW CAPTAIN
Incidentally Rafael van der Vaart took the Dutch armband when Van Bronckhorst left the field.
107' BEAUTY OR BEASTS?
So will the beauty of Spain or the beast of Holland win the 19th World Cup? Most neutrals will be pleading for the former to nick one in the next 780 seconds. Football's never been a fair game, though.
106' SECOND HALF EXTRA TIME
The final 15 minutes of the 2010 World Cup are underway.
105' SPAIN SUB
Final throw of the dice from Del Bosque who throws on Fernando Torres to find a winner. David Villa makes way, meaning that he won't win the Golden Boot. Only Wesley Sneijder can deny Thomas Muller that prize, courtesy of the German having more assists. Well, unless Torres bags six in the next 15 minutes of course.
105' HALF TIME
Chances galore but no goals. Time to switch ends.
105' HOLLAND SUB
Well, that's a bit of a surprise. Giovani van Bronckhorst's football career has just ended, as the retiring full back has been replaced by Edson Braafheid. He's had a sterling game, the captain, but must be getting tired. Or maybe Braafheid just takes a good penalty...
104' MESSI-ESQUE
Messi-esque run from Fabregas who gets his head down and goes for the jugular, tearing through the Dutch midfield and to 20 yards from goal, before firing wide. Talk about taking the bull by the horns.
103' HELL FOR LEATHER
A much better game on the eye now, thankfully, with both sides going hell for leather to avoid the dreaded penalties. Yet still it remains goalless.
101' SIDE NETTING
It looks it, is has to be in! But it isn't - Spain have missed again. On the counter Villa spreads wide to Jesus Navas who sets his sights for the far corner with a low shot from the right of the box. Crucially it hits Van Bronckhorst and deflects to the near post and the side netting.
100' HOLLAND SUB
The gallivanting continues as Bert van Marwijk replaces enforcer Nigel de Jong with playmaker Rafael van der Vaart.
99' DECENT OPENING
Goodness knows how this is still 0-0. Another very decent opening for Spain as Fabregas slips Iniesta past Holland's back two, but Van Bronckhorst does extremely well to cover and snuff out the threat before Iniesta can shoot.
97' HARMLESSLY WIDE
Capdevila clips a cross to the back stick where Van Bronckhorst nods behind for another Spain corner. It's all action here as both sides push to find that elusive goal. From this particular flag kick, though, Puyol nods harmlessly wide.
96' SHOULD SCORE
And now straight down the other end Mathijsen has the daddy of all free headers to break the deadlock, but somehow manages to nod a corner over the top from six yards with Casillas in no-man's land. Seriously, what's going on here?
95' FABREGAS CHANCE
Yet another huge chance is spurned, this time by Cesc Fabregas. Iniesta wait and then plays Fabregas in with a great pass. The Arsenal man looks set to clip into the corner but his low shot is blocked by Stekelenburg.
92' THE TREATMENT
Fabregas, Iniesta and Xavi are all given the Holland treatment as they try to get a shot away in and around the box. Tackles and blocks flying in everywhere but the most Spain win is a corner.
91' DANGEROUS ON BREAK
And that's because, for all Spain's possessional and territorial advantage, Holland and Robben look extremely dangerous on the counter.
91' EXTRA TIME
No favourites here - flip a coin and pick a winner. Spain kick us off again.
90' FULL TIME
Nope, that's it. No shots in injury time so we'll need 30 more minutes in Johannesburg.
90' PATIENT PASSING
And still Spain refuse to lump it forward, even at 0-0 in the 93rd minutes of a World Cup final. Nothing doing though - the Dutch are back in big numbers.
90' ADDED TIME
Three minutes left to find a winner.
90' OFFSIDE
Van Persie is correctly flagged offside before he takes on Casillas and rolls the ball against the post.
89' CLEARED
Iniesta finds Capdevila high down Spain's left flank, but his cross is cleared. It just hasn't happened for Spain in open play tonight.
87' DO-OR-DIE
Holland doing the pressing here as we enter the do-or-die stages.
87' SPAIN SUB
That octopus has got a rival. Fabregas on, Alonso off.
85' FAB SUB
Cesc Fabregas is being readied for Spain. If I was to guess I'd say Xabi Alonso will be replaced.
83' ROBBEN DENIED
Spain just can't keep a lid on Arjen Robben. A punt is flicked on by Van Persie to the Bayern man, who comfortably escapes Puyol's loose shackles and sprints towards the box. Puyol has his arms all over Robben but the winger stays on his feet, edging into the area before Casillas claims with a diving grab. Robben immediately chases after Howard Webb, claiming Puyol fouled him, and duly picks up a booking for his protests.
82' TENSION RISING
Just eight minutes to go and the tension is rising inside Soccer City. Just one mistake and that'll be it now - next goal wins, surely.
81' SUPERB CHALLENGE
Iniesta skips his way into the box, past Heitinga but not past Wesley Sneijder who fearlessly and perfectly times a brilliant ball-winning tackle. It had to be perfect, and it was.
78' FLASHPOINT
Another flashpoint as Iniesta and Van Bommel take a chunk out of each other. No bookings this time.
77' RAMOS CHANCE
Spain's two best chances tonight have now both fallen to Sergio Ramos. This one is seriously gilt-edged; Ramos is startlingly left all alone eight yards out but criminally powers a header over the bar from Xavi's inswinging corner. Should have scored, no doubt.
77' DEFLECTED WIDE
Much more like it from Spain as Xavi and Villa one-two their way into the box. Van der Wiel gets across with a sliding tackle to send Villa's shot wide of the post.
76' SPECTACULAR
Villa goes for the spectacular, volleying wide off-balance from a narrow angle near the left byline.
75' TALKING-TO
Sneijder, already booked, is given a talking-to by Howard Webb for yet another foul. Such a shame that football's showpiece fixture has been polluted with so many offences.
74' FREE KICK
Villa lines up a 25 yard free kick, left of centre, but curls it comfortably wide.
72' NEW RECORD
Our stats man has just informed me that Howard Webb has set a record for the most cards handed out in a World Cup final. Eight so far, easily surpassing six from the 1986 and 1990 finals, both contested by West Germany and Argentina. Still 18 minutes (at least) to go as well.
71' HOLLAND SUB
The pacey Eljero Elia replaces Dirk Kuyt for Holland.
69' GREAT BLOCK
Jesus Navas burns down the right, taking on Van Bronckhorst and slamming a low cross towards Villa at the back stick. Heitinga gets a touch on it but Villa primes himself and shoots, with Heitinga getting in the way once again with a goal-saving block.
68' STRETCHING
Tactics are going out of the window a bit here, with Holland seemingly buoyed by that Robben chance and starting to play with more freedom. Play is stretching out a touch.
67' BOOKING
Capdevila earns Spain's third booking of the night - and sixth of the tournament - for clipping Van Persie as the Arsenal man stretches his legs down Holland's right.
65' POSITIVITY
How costly could that miss prove to be? Mind you, Holland have created just as many chances as Spain have. A little more positivity and less fouls could do the trick, with Spain still looking out of sorts down the other end.
62' HUGE CHANCE
That was the chance they've been waiting for, right there. Robben is suddenly clean through as Spain fall asleep and let Sneijder's low pass creep through their flimsy back line. The Bayern man hares into the box but, from 18 yards out and dead centre, Robben clips an indecisive low left-footed shot against the legs of Casillas and wide. Hands to mouth, Robben is aghast - he knows he could have won the World Cup with that one swing of his left foot.
61' WELL WIDE
Van Persie does well to get ahead of Puyol to nod a Sneijder cross well wide.
60' SPAIN SUB
Change of tack from Del Bosque who sends on Jesus Navas in place of the ineffective Pedro.
59' OFFSIDE
Heitinga is mighty close to nodding into the corner from that free kick, but is correctly flagged offside.
58' DRAGGED DOWN
Iniesta sends his studs down Sneijder's calf but, despite giving a foul, Howard Webb doesn't pull out a yellow card. Spain have been dragged down into this war of attrition.
57' BOOKING
Holland's fifth booking of the game is for John Heitinga, who gets a lot of David Villa and none of the ball.
56' CRUCIAL TEN MINS
Crucial ten minutes coming up for Holland, with Spain clearly in the mood to take the lead as soon as possible. This has got 1-0 written all over it and the Dutch need to weather this storm.
55' XAVI SHOT
Xavi bends the free kick, from the right of the area, around the wall and to the near post but Stekelenburg watches it flash wide. Decent attempt.
54' BOOKINGS
Pretty boring to keep talking about late fouls and bookings, but they just keep happening. Captain Van Bronckhorst checks a run from Sergio Ramos as Spain tika-taka their way into the area. Yellow card.
52' TRADEMARK SHOT
Holland too are moving the ball around quicker. Robben, with what is now his trademark shimmy inside and shot at goal, tests Casillas but the keeper makes a comfortable low save.
50' EXCELLENT MOVE
An excellent, and all-too rare, foray forward from right back Van der Wiel who plays a lovely one-two with Van Persie and drills a ball across goal from the right byline, but there's absolutely no Dutch player anywhere near it.
49' URGENCY
A change in pace from Spain at the start of this half as they look to unlock this stubborn Dutch defence. Del Bosque has sent them out with more urgency.
48' JUST BEHIND
Xavi's gorgeous outswinging corner is met by Puyol who nods across goal, but it drops just behind the unmarked Capdevila.
46' DELICIOUS TOUCH
Delicious touch from Robben who clips the ball over Alonso's head before over-hitting a through ball to Van Persie. He's surely the key to victory for the Dutch.
46' SECOND HALF
Spain get the ball rolling. Neither side has made a change at the break.
45' THE REF
Just a quick word on Howard Webb who has got almost everything right, De Jong's shocker aside. It's the kind of game he would have been dreading - physical, full of late and aggressive fouls, with the Dutch culpable on the whole.
45' HALF TIME
A frustrating half of football to watch, which ends goalless. Spain have been nullified by the Dutch, who in turn have offered precious little going forward while an early chance for Ramos aside the two keepers have been fairly redundant. Van Marwijk will be delighted but at this rate he won't have 11 men on the field for long. To reiterate - goal needed.
45' BEST SPELL
Holland are ending the half with their best spell of the game. Heitinga dangerously heads a deep free kick across goal, but not to a team mate, before Robben cuts inside and drills a low shot to the near post, where Casillas has to parry wide.
43' AMBITIOUS
Xabi Alonso, just in front of the centre circle, cannons the free kick goalwards. Not a bad attempt, but that's more suited to the training ground than a World Cup final.
42' NO YELLOW
The latest in a long line of late tackles from the Dutch. This latest is by Sneijder on Busquets, but no booking follows. Really, do they have to resort to this?
40' WHISTLES OVER
Xavi sends the free kick into the box and it whistles over Puyol's head. A meaningful glance and the ball could have gone anywhere.
39' FRACTION LATE
Van Bommel is a fraction late on Iniesta - foul, but no booking. He's walking a seriously fine line now.
38' PEDRO SHOT
Brisk break from Spain and the buoyant Pedro, starting just his second international match, drags a low 25-yarder past the post with his left foot.
37' AIR SHOT
Proper corner for Holland this time, won legitimately by Sneijder after Robben has Capdevila on the back foot once more. It's worked to the edge of the box and then across goal for Mathijsen, left all alone ten yards out. Spain have left him alone for a reason though - Mathijsen misses the ball with a hilarious air-shot. Of all the times...
34' CALAMITY CASILLAS
I give you the calamitous Iker Casillas - exhibit A. As Holland hoof the ball back to the Spanish keeper after he puts it out so that Puyol could receive treatment, Casillas misjudges the flight of the ball and fingertips it over his own head for a corner. Van Persie very sportingly plays the corner back to Casillas, which is pretty humiliating for Spain's number one. Like a nervous bespectacled schoolboy on the playground, taken pity on after a teacher steps in.
33' GOAL NEEDED
Okay it's official; the game needs a goal. Needless challenges, from the Dutch in particular, are stifling the creativity on show.
31' INCOHERENT
So half an hour in and not two many chances to report. Well two to be precise, for Ramos and Villa. Nothing coherent to the passing moves of either side at the moment.
29' KUNG FU
Thankfully Alonso is up and walking okay, but he must be hurting from that. Honestly, it was more of a kung fu kick from De Jong. The likes of Cruyff and Neeskens will be wincing at this - it's a world away from total football.
28' BOOKING
Holland's up-and-at-them approach is going to cost them dearly soon. It nearly costs Xabi Alonso dearly here, as De Jong is incredibly high with a boot in his chest. Again, absolutely no need for it. Could easily have been a red to be honest and the Spanish are furious with the Manchester City midfielder.
25' SMOTHERING
This is fast heading into a situation where the game needs a goal to liven things up. Holland are doing a much better job of smothering Spain, leaving us chance-less for the last 13 minutes.
24' CLAIMED
Great claim from Casillas as he boldly leaps to grab the resulting floated free kick into the box. A confidence booster.
23' AND ANOTHER
Ramos is the latest in Webb's book as he fouls Kuyt without winning the ball. At least he's consistent, Webb.
22' BOOKING
Three bookings already from Howard Webb but they've all been justified - this one especially. Van Bommel crunches into Iniesta from behind with Spain going nowhere. It's a needlessly strong tackle and one which merits at least a yellow.
21' UNTROUBLED
That corner yields a throw in on the other flank, which Van Bronckhorst chucks into the box, but Spain remain untroubled.
21' FLYING ROBBEN
Superb work from the flying Robben who has Capdevila seeing stars as he races down the right. Alonso helps out his team mate to concede a corner.
19' NERVES?
The Dutch still haven't really settled into a pattern of play. Yes their primary aim is to defend but when they win the ball back they look clueless as to what to do with it. Nerves perhaps?
18' WORTH A POP
Sneijder bends the free kick, from all of 35 yards, at goal but Casillas gets behind it. Still, worth a pop - the Real Madrid stopper has looked decidedly shaky at times over the last four weeks.
17' BOOKING
Puyol catches Robben from behind as the Bayern winger plays a quick pass. The histrionics don't help, but I doubt Howard Webb is swayed by that alone as he books Puyol.
16' DISJOINTED
Messrs Robben and Sneijder have barely been involved thus far, hence their lack of a mention in the first 16 minutes. Holland look disjointed.
15' TREATMENT REQUIRED
Capdevila requires treatment from the physio but it doesn't look too serious.
15' BOOKING
Van Persie is late on Capdevila as the left back looks to move things on down the line. Rash challenge - uncalled for, and that's the first booking of the night.
14' ON THE MARK
First - and surely not the last - foul of the night from Mark van Bommel who clatters into Carlos Puyol.
13' POSSESSION
More possession for the Spanish with the Dutch chasing shadows.
12' SIDE NETTING
From the corner Villa volleys left-footed into the side netting as Holland leave him alone at the back stick. Great start for Spain here, but the Dutch aren't doing their jobs.
11' CRUCIAL CLEARANCE
Holland fail to deal with Villa once more, but at least this time Van Bronckhorst goes with the Barcelona man as Pedro clips one over the top. It's eventually worked wide right to Ramos who skips past Kuyt and drills across goal, where Heitinga has to lash dangerously over his own bar. Safety first.
9' IN BEHIND
For the third time Villa races in behind the Dutch defence. Xavi over-hits his pass which bounces through to Stekelenburg, but Villa isn't flagged offside. Warning signs, not heeded.
8' KUYT SHOT
A slack Busquets pass is straight to Kuyt, edging on the Spain third of the field. The Liverpool workaholic elects to shoot from range and it's down the throat of Iker Casillas.
7' FIRST GAME
A stat which surfaced in the build up to this game was that Holland Spain have never previously met in the finals of a World Cup or European Championships. I don't think it's unreasonable to suggest that they normally get knocked out far too early to be able to meet in the knockout stages. Still, quite a stage for their first serious competitive meeting.
6' YELLOW PERIL
Don't be surprised to see a few yellow cards flashed in the direction of Holland's players tonight - they've already received 15 bookings in the tournament, compared to just three for Spain.
5' EARLY CHANCE
Ramos gets a diving head on the resulting free kick and Stekelenburg has to pull off a flying save, parrying to the right. Great early chance - free header to boot.
4' PRESSING
Just four minutes in but already it's Spain doing the pressing with Holland responding to their movements. Van Bronckhorst lays into Ramos down Spain's right and that's another free kick.
3' OFFSIDE
Pedro plays a smart reverse pass through the Holland back four for David Villa to chase, but he's a fraction offside.
3' CLEARED
Ramos sends a deep cross into the box but it's cleared.
2' HUGE ROAR
Huge roar as Iniesta and Pedro try and work something near the Holland box, but Mathijsen gets there first.
1' FOUL
Robin van Persie, yet to set the tournament alight in any shape or form, fouls Busquets inside the centre circle and that's the first foul of the match.
1' WELL SUPPORTED
Orange shirts aplenty in the crowd as well and the atmosphere really is just incredible.
1' KICK OFF
Holland kick off the 19th World Cup final.
0' CHANGE KIT
Incidentally Spain, being the designated 'away' team for the final, are playing in their change kit of dark blue. Holland are, of course, clad in brilliant orange.
0' ANTHEMS
Moments don't come much prouder than this - representing your country in front on hundreds of millions of people watching throughout the world as your national anthem is played. Stirring stuff for both sides, and no doubt very emotional too. Right, dignitaries over - kick off coming up.
0' HANDSHAKES
South Africa's President Jacob Zuma shakes hands with the two starting XIs, led by captains Iker Casillas and Gio van Bronckhorst.
0' TEAMS OUT
Howard Webb and his English assistants, Mike Mullarkey and Darren Cann, proudly lead out the two sides.
0' ATMOSPHERE BUILDING
The atmosphere inside Soccer City is reaching a crescendo with kick off just over ten minutes away. Fabio Cannavaro, winning captain four years ago for Italy, parades the trophy to the 90-odd thousand fans in the stadium who respond in kind with simultaneous blasts on their vuvuzelas. Talk about a carnival atmosphere.
0' FITTING VENUE
The magnificent Soccer City Stadium, 94,700 seats and all, is a fitting venue for the biggest football match on the planet. The Johannesburg venue has hosted seven games thus far, including the opening fixture (South Africa 1-1 Mexico) and most recently Ghana's heartbreaking quarter final exit on penalties to Uruguay. Holland have played here, beating Denmark 2-0, but this is Spain's first Soccer City experience at the tournament.
0' SUBS
With no one players suspended or injured, the two bosses have a full bench of 12 players each. Namely, they are: HOLLAND: Vorm, Boschker; Ooijer, Boulahrouz, Braafheid; De Zeeuw, Schaars, Afellay, Van der Vaart; Babel, Elia, Huntelaar. SPAIN: Valdes, Reina; Albiol, Marchena, Arbeloa; Martinez, Mata, Fabregas, Silva, Navas; Llorente, Torres.
0' SPAIN LINE UP
As expected Del Bosque names an unchanged Spain line up, meaning Fernando Torres starts on the bench alongside the likes of Cesc Fabregas and David Silva. Full line up: Casillas; Ramos, Pique, Puyol, Capdevila; Iniesta, Busquets, Alonso, Xavi; Villa, Pedro.
0' HOLLAND LINE UP
Van der Wiel gets the nod over Boulahrouz at right back as Bert van Marwijk makes two changes from the semi final. De Jong, also back from suspension, replaces Demy de Zeeuw. Full line up: Stekelenburg; Van der Wiel, Heitinga, Mathijsen, Van Bronckhorst; Robben, Van Bommel, De Jong, Sneijder, Kuyt; Van Persie.
0' THE REF
England has representation in the final for the first time since 1974 in the form of referee Howard Webb. In doing so Webb, aged 38, achieves the honour of refereeing the Champions League and World Cup finals within the space of two months. So far in South Africa he's reffed three games (Spain 0-1 Switzerland, Slovakia 3-2 Italy, Brazil 3-0 Chile), showing 17 yellow cards and no reds.
0' KEY CLASH: BOULAHROUZ V VILLA
Khalid Boulahrouz was impressive in Holland's semi final win over Uruguay but the right back has a much tougher task tonight - stopping David Villa enjoying a free roam down Spain's left. That's if Boulahrouz plays at all, with Gregory van der Wiel back from suspension and hoping for a recall.
0' KEY CLASH: ROBBEN V CAPDEVILA
If Robben starts on the right and cuts inside, as has been his favoured position of late with particular success for Bayern, then he'll be up against probably the least heralded of Spain's XI - Villarreal's 32 year-old left back Joan Capdevila. With Sergio Busquets likely to be keeping an eye on Sneijder, Robben will want to get one-on-one with Capdevila as often as possible.
0' KEY CLASH: MIDFIELD
Holland's first task is to succeed where Portugal, Paraguay and Germany (but not Switzerland) failed - stop Spain scoring. Midfield enforcers Mark van Bommel and Nigel de Jong are key to this objective, while Xavi and Andres Iniesta's brief is to evade their shackles and set Villa and Pedro free.
0' STAR MEN: SPAIN
As for Spain, well take your pick from Xavi, Andres Iniesta, Xabi Alonso, Pedro or David Villa. The latter in particular has been in sparkling form in La Furia Roja's run to the final, bagging five goals. One more tonight and the Golden Boot could be his.
0' STAR MEN: HOLLAND
And while defending deep and tight is high on the Dutch agenda tonight, they still possess frighteningly-good abilities going forward in the shape of Arjen Robben and Wesley Sneijder (plus Robin van Persie if he ups his game). Key to an Oranje victory lies in the feet of the Bayern Munich and Inter Milan playmakers.
0' NOT PRETTY; EFFECTIVE
Only a fool would completely write off the Dutch, though. Bert van Marwijk's chosen style may not be as pleasing on the eye as that of the Spanish but it's been just as, if not more, effective in South Africa. Six convincing wins with 11 goals scored is proof of that.
0' SPAIN FAVOURITES
Spain, like they have been for the past two years since they became European Champions, are most people's favourites tonight. That's because, while they haven't showcased it in abundance over the last month, Vicente del Bosque's side have the ability to 'tika-taka' their way through any defence on the planet.
0' 90 MINUTES TO GO
We're just 90 minutes away from the biggest 90 minutes (or more) in international football since the last time this truly awesome spectacle came around four years ago. So will the 2010 World Cup winners be Holland or Spain?
0' KICK OFF 1930 BST
History will be made in South Africa tonight and we'll be bringing you all the action with our live text commentary. The build up starts at 1800 BST, with kick off at 1930 BST.
0' EARLY TEAM NEWS
Gregory van der Wiel and Nigel de Jong return from suspension for Holland and gaffer Bert van Marwijk has a fully fit squad to choose from. Vicente del Bosque has no injury worries ahead of Spain's first ever World Cup final. Pedro's impressive semi final display against Germany means he'll probably keep his place ahead of the out-of-form Fernando Torres.
0' INTRO
After 30 days, 63 games, 144 goals, 247 yellow cards, 16 red cards, two penalty shoot-outs and 5,760 minutes of football, the 2010 World Cup reaches a potentially glorious climax tonight as Holland play Spain for the right to become the eighth winner of the biggest, best and most exciting football tournament on the globe.
CommentaryTeam StatsPlayer Stats Shotchart
Teams
Holland
(4-2-3-1)
Maarten Stekelenburg1
111' Gregory Van der Wiel2
57' 109' John Heitinga3
117' Joris Mathijsen4
54' 105' Giovanni Van Bronckhorst5
22' Mark Van Bommel6
28' 99' Nigel De Jong8
84' Arjen Robben11
Wesley Sneijder10
71' Dirk Kuyt7
15' Robin Van Persie9
Substitutes
Sander Boschker22
Michel Vorm16
105' Edson Braafheid15
Andre Ooijer13
Khalid Boulahrouz12
99' Rafael Van der Vaart23
Stijn Schaars18
Ibrahim Afellay20
Demy De Zeeuw14
71' Eljero Elia17
Klaas-Jan Huntelaar21
Ryan Babel19
Spain
(4-2-3-1)
1Iker Casillas
15Sergio Ramos 23'
3Gerard Piqué
5Carles Puyol 17'
11Joan Capdevila 67'
16Sergio Busquets
14Xabi Alonso 87'
6Andrés Iniesta 118' 116' 
8Xavi Hernández 120'
18 Pedro 60'
7David Villa 106'
Substitutes
23José Reina
12Víctor Valdés
4Carlos Marchena
2Raúl Albiol
17Alvaro Arbeloa
10Francesc Fàbregas 87'
22Jesús Navas 60'
21David Silva
20Javier Martínez
9Fernando Torres 106'
19Fernando Llorente
13Juan Manuel Mata
Team Stats
Holland Spain
0 Goals 1
0 Assists 1
13 Shots 18
5 Shots on Goal 6
4 Saves 4
0 Penalties Scored 0
0 Penalty Kicks 0
11 Crosses 16
6 Corner Kicks 8
7 Offsides 6
28 Fouls Committed 19
8 Cautions/Yellow Cards 5
1 Red Cards 0
CommentaryTeam StatsPlayer Stats Shotchart
Holland
No. Player G YC RC GA Svs
1M. Stekelenburg - 0 0 1 4
2G. Van der Wiel 0 1 0 - -
3J. Heitinga 0 1 1 - -
4J. Mathijsen 0 1 0 - -
5G. Van Bronckhorst 0 1 0 - -
6M. Van Bommel 0 1 0 - -
7D. Kuyt 0 0 0 - -
8N. De Jong 0 1 0 - -
9R. Van Persie 0 1 0 - -
10W. Sneijder 0 0 0 - -
11A. Robben 0 1 0 - -
Substitutes
15E. Braafheid 0 0 0 - -
17E. Elia 0 0 0 - -
23R. Van der Vaart 0 0 0 - -

Spain
No. Player G YC RC GA Svs
1I. Casillas - 0 0 0 4
3G. Piqué 0 0 0 - -
5C. Puyol 0 1 0 - -
6A. Iniesta 1 1 0 - -
7D. Villa 0 0 0 - -
8X. Hernández 0 1 0 - -
11J. Capdevila 0 1 0 - -
14X. Alonso 0 0 0 - -
15S. Ramos 0 1 0 - -
16S. Busquets 0 0 0 - -
18 Pedro 0 0 0 - -
Substitutes
9F. Torres 0 0 0 - -
10F. Fàbregas 0 0 0 - -
22J. Navas 0 0 0 - -
CommentaryTeam StatsPlayer Stats Shotchart

Players
No.Number
GGoals
AstAssists
SHTSShots
SOGShots on Goal
CKCorner Kicks
CRCrosses
OffOffsides
FCFouls Committed
FSFouls Suffered
YCYellow Cards
RCRed Cards
GAGoals Against
SvsSaves
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