Group G is perhaps the toughest group in all of the 2014 World Cup. Chile is a talented team, but Spain and Netherlands have championship aspirations and only two teams can go on to the 16-team tournament. If Chile wants to make it to the tournament, they will have to beat Spain or Netherlands, but Chile cannot take Australia lightly, even if they are the clear favorites.
Led by Arturo Vidal and Alexis Sanchez, Chile has two special players on the offensive end that could take them deep into the tournament. Pair that with goalkeeper Claudio Bravo and it is easy to see why many experts have high projections for this team. Chile will be entering its ninth World Cup and this is first time going consecutively.
In the 2010 World Cup, Chile went to the 16-team tournament and they have the experience to go even further than last time. Mauricio Isla is player to watch for Chile, as he is 26 years old and an up-and-coming player for Juventus. Spain is the favorite out of this group, but beating out Netherlands is definitely an attaining task. If Chile gets second place in the knockout stage, they will likely play Brazil in the tournament. That is not good news for the Chilean national team, especially since Brazil has had Chile’s number in recent years.
Group Stage Game 1: Chile vs. Australia – Friday, June 13, 6 P.M. EST on ESPN2.
Group Stage Game 2: Chile vs. Spain – Wednesday, June 18, 3 P.M. EST on ESPN.
Group Stage Game 3: Chile vs. Netherlands – Monday, June 23, Noon EST on ESPN.