The Netherlands caused a shock in Group B’s opener with a 1-5 win over 2010 World Cup winners Spain in a repeat of the final four years ago in what was a horrific night for Iker Casillas.
Current world champions Spain took the lead however through a Xabi Alonso penalty coolly slotted home past Jasper Cilessen. Chelsea bound Diego Costa won the spot kick when he was tripped by Dutch defender Stefan de Vrij after 27 minutes.
Runners up of the 2010 tournament, Holland, leveled 17 minutes later when Robin Van Persie scored a brilliant powerful diving header past Iker Casillas who was off his line. Daley Blind with the cross.
Blind was also provider for Holland’s second just before the break. Some, almost Spanish passing play, from the Netherlands the ball was worked out to Blind on the left whose chipped through ball found Robben who brought the ball down before flicking it away from Pique and then scoring past Casillas with ease.
Soon after the typically terrorizing striking threat in Costa showed his well documented bad side when he aimed a headbutt at Bruno Martins Indi and could have easily seen red.
The Netherlands extended the lead when Wesley Sneijder, making his 100th cap, whipped in a free-kick that was forced home by De Vrij on 64 minutes. Casillas felt he was fouled by Van Persie but the referee saw no wrongdoing.
Holland’s fourth came eight minutes after Van Persie stole the ball off a dallying Casillas and tap home for his second of the match.
The misery was compounded for Spain’s number 1 keeper when Robben burst down the right with brute pace, Casillas came out to try and deal with the threat but Robben kept running, darting past the Real Madrid stopper and despite some numbers back in the Spain box, powered home the fifth.
Louis Van Gaal’s rampant side almost added a sixth when Jermaine Lens recieved the ball in the centre of the box but Casillas was equal to his shot before Robben almost sealed his hat-trick with a rocket of a shot that, to his credit, Casillas kept out well.
Holland started the first half on the front foot in what was an eventful first half too. Robben got things going after eight minutes when played a neat through ball to Sneijder but he could only shoot straight at Casillas when he really should have done better.
Before the Dutch ran riot, Spain could have doubled their lead in the first half. Andres Iniesta found David Silva with a trademark pass, the Manchester City play-maker attempted to chip Cilessen but the Dutch stopper was equal to it and tipped the ball out for a corner, which came to nothing and Spain were punished soon after and it just went to pieces from there.