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.
Well, history repeated itself for Chile and their fans after the loss to Brazil which saw La Roja exit the tournament.
Chile played a beautiful attacking style of football which impressed many around the world - a talented, quick, young team with a bright future. It was impressive and promising to see a side which did not stop attacking, even when three goals down. La Roja has heart, one which made life difficult for a strong Spanish side, even as Chile played an hour with only 10 men - they did not give-up.
On the downside, La Roja's defence lacked structure, and without their two key defenders in Medel and Ponce, Chile was vulnerable. Lack of big match experience was another challenge for Chile who failed to make consecutive finals in 2002 and 2006, their last appearance being France 98'. Unfortunate for Chile and Humberto Suazo, the star of the qualifying campaign was unable to find form due to injuries sustained prior to the tournament.
In four years time the World Cup finals are in Brazil - if the team continues to grow and mature without major change, I dare say - "This team will go further than the final 16".