July 5, 2010
The qualification process in South America for the 2010 finals concluded with Chile finishing second in the continent, 1 point behind Brazil, and with Humberto Suazo as leading goal scorer in the Conmebol confederation.
Naturally, such achievements had an entire nation overwhelmed with hope and anticipation for the 2010 finals, despite the draw placing Chile with two competitive teams in Spain and Switzerland - and a possible match-up with Brazil in the round of 16.
June 28, 2010
The round of 16 clash between Brazil and Chile was to determine which of the top two teams in South American qualifiers would proceed to the quarter finals. The last time these two teams met in a World Cup final was France 98' - also in the round of 16.
The fans of Chile where eager to see the return of Humberto Suazo, so far this tournament only playing half a game against Switzerland for lack of match fitness, the result of previous injuries. Regrettably for Chile, two key defenders in Waldo Ponce and Gary Medel would not play a part in the match as they had both accumulated yellow cards in previous outings.
June 26, 2010
It's difficult to overcome a team with talented players and great urge to win, especially with only 10 men. Despite the difference, Chile were able to match Spain for much of the game.
The first half of the game saw Chile and Spain share possession of the ball with both teams failing to capitalize on their opportunities. Defensive errors early in the game provided Spain with clearer chances and when La Roja's offense attacked, La Roja Furia counter attacked with speed and looked dangerous.
June 21, 2010
One goal was all La Roja was able to convert in the win against The Helvetians in their second group game, played at Port Elizabeth stadium, Nelson Mandela Bay.
Chile had much of the ball and controlled most of the attack from the kick-off. The game changed in the first half when Switzerland where down to ten men after 30 minutes of play - Valon Behrami was given a direct red card for raised elbows in two consecutive tackles.
Early in the battle it was obvious that referee AL Ghamdi Khalil of Saudi Arabia was out to impose himself on the game with a yellow card to Humberto Suazo. By the end of the game a total of 10 cards were issued with 9 yellow and 1 red.
June 16, 2010
"La Roja" took three points in Nelspruit against "Los Catrachos" with a 1-0 win in the opening match for group "H". The first half of the game was an all-out attack by Chile and managed to score the first and only goal at the 33' through Jean Beausejour.
Chile had most of the possession in midfield and displayed great creativity in attack. However, at half time they only had "One fruit" to show for their efforts.
On a positive note, Chile were strong from the back with an organised defence, for the keeper Claudio Bravo it resulted in a quiet first period. Despite Honduras creating some opportunities in the second part of the game, "Los Catrachos" were unable to equalize.
June 11, 2010
Marcelo Bielsa was confident that Humberto Suazo would play in the 2010 World Cup finals even after the striker's most recent injury, and despite the risk associated with having an injured player in the final 23 man squad.
Humberto Suazo and the Chilean medical staff are racing against time to have the striker ready for their opening match in Nelspruit against Honduras on June 16 - even if it is on the bench for most of the game.
May 30, 2010
Chile overcame Zambia in their last friendly encounter with a 3-0 score-line, the first two goals provided by Alexis Sanchez, the final goal coming from Jorge Valdivia.
In brief, Chile commenced and finished both halves of football in good form, though there were momentary periods in the middle of the first period without conviction. This made coach Bielsa bring on four changes at half time to alter the 0-0 score-line.
Beausejour, Isla, Estrada and Sanchez, all provided the collective play Chile needed to orchestrate attacking pressure, in turn providing the first goal at the 54' minute of the game. Again, the coach demonstrated his tactical ability and understanding of the artillery at his disposal within the squad.
"Exciting to see both Sanchez and Valdivia finding the back of the net, considering most of Chile anxiously await the return of Humberto Suazo..."
May 26, 2010
The final 23 man Chilean squad for South Africa is still unknown as Marcelo Bielsa races against the clock with upcoming friendly matches and team adjustments.
Zambia is the next team Chile will play on May 26 in Calama, after which the team will return to the capital prior to leaving for two games, both played on May 30 and with only six hours difference. The two rivals on the day are Ireland and Israel played respectively in Chillan and Concepcion .
After 5 players were axed from the 30 man provisional squad, Bielsa must now release two more before the June 1 deadline.
May 19, 2010
Chile coach Marcelo Bielsa has wielded the axe ahead of the World Cup and dropped five players from his provisional squad.
Midfielders Jaime Valdes, Manuel Iturra, Pedro Morales, Charles Aranguiz and Jose Pedro Fuenzalida are the five deemed surplus to requirements in Bielsa's plans, but the coach will have to drop a further two before the June 1 deadline.