Honduras vs Chile – South Americans provide sparkle
Chile lived up to their billing as a team to watch at this World Cup by putting in a display full of attacking style that deserved better than the 1-0 winning score over Honduras.
Mercelo Bielsa’s team breathed life into a so far limp tournament with an unrelenting performance and now look a solid bet to make it to the round of 16. They are 4/1 to top Group H.
Alexis Sanchez stole the show on the right of the South American side’s three-man attack and could be a decent outside bet for player of the tournament. Given his vigour for shooting, he makes an enticing prospect at 100/1 for the Golden Shoe.
Sanchez was at the heart of Chile’s goal, slipping in Mauricio Isla down Honduras’ left flank. His low driven cross was bundled home by Jean Beausejour after the defender had attempted to clear it.
Chile didn’t rest, though, and continued to send men forward right to the final whistle, often having five men in the opposition’s box at once.
Neat interplay and skilful touches were the order of the day, while every player looked comfortable on the ball.
Their best chance for adding to the score was fluffed out by a combination of great keeping and poor finishing. Matias Fernandez’s wicked free-kick was turned back across goal giving Waldo Ponce an apparently open net. But his header wasn’t in the corner enough and Noel Valladreas was able to claw it away.
Honduras stuck to their task creditably but Chile’s constant pressure never allowed them out and on this evidence the South American’s will pose a real challenge to Spain in the final group game on Friday June 25th.
Will Chile be able to keep up the tempo and cause an upset in Group H? They are 4/1 to get above Spain into first.