Fernandes Rocks World Cup Favourites Spain
Thursday, 17th June 2010 at 09:53am
Switzerland produced the first big shock of the 2010 Fifa World Cup when a solitary strike from former Manchester City winger Gelson Fernandes was enough to give the Swiss a dream start in South Africa against tournament favourites Spain.
Spain dominated possession from start to finish but was unable to create many clear cut opportunities as Ottmar Hitzfeld's team defender resolutely, throwing bodies in the way of wave after wave of Spanish attacks.
The European champions started with Fernando Torres and Cesc Fabregas on the bench and called upon the Liverpool striker soon after they fell behind, but the Liverpool superstar looked short of match practice, having played only a few minutes since picking up an injury in April.
Spain pushed everyone bar Ike Casillas forward in the dying moments but were unable to fashion an equaliser and Switzerland held on to claim a famous win and consign Spain to only their second defeat in 49 matches, their first coming in South Africa in 2009 when they were beaten 2-0 by the USA.
In the other Group H match, Chile overcame Honduras by a goal to nil to register their first World Cup win in 48 years.
Coach Marcelo Bielsa who oversaw Argentina's disastrous 2002 World Cup campaign in Japan and Korea has set up his Chile team to play attacking football and the South American's slick movement was interplay was rewarded in the 34th minute when Jean Beausejour gave them the lead.
Honduras tried to fight their way back into the match but Chile was able to hold out comfortably and seal three valuable points.
In the last fixture of the day, host nation South Africa's chances of qualifying for the round of 16 were dealt a huge blow when they crashed to a 3-0 defeat at the hands of Uruguay.
Diego Forlan was the tormentor-in-chief with two goals including a first half penalty before Pereira added the third five minutes into injury time.
The result puts the two-time winners top of the group on four points while the hosts will have to beat France in their final game to stand a chance of making the knock out phase.