World Cup Day 11 match previews – Portugal meet the plucky Korean DPR while the Spanish face Honduras

Some of the more enterprising football of the tournament could well occur on Day 11 of the World Cup. The Korean DPR” will attempt to keep at bay a Portugal” side with the world’s most expensive player in toe, while a stylish Chile” side meet Switzerland“, with the winner guaranteed a place in the knock-out stage. The final game of the day will give Spain” the chance to make amends for their shock defeat at the hands of the Swiss as they face href=”t3_13_58_honduras.html”class=”link2″>Honduras“.

KOREA DPR vs. PORTUGAL
12.30pm –Green Point, Cape Town

The memories of 1966 might have dominated the lead-up to this match, but in truth the spirit of Korea’s performance against Brazil during their opening group game means that it could be very much a reality that the world cup outsiders upset one of the world’s best known sides.

In-fact the parallels between this year and ’66 aren’t all that dissimilar in that Cristiano Ronaldo, one of the modern era’s greatest players, could be compared to Eusebio, the Portuguese talisman during the 60’s and the man who fired four past Korea during the two sides’ meeting in that infamous World Cup. Could Ronaldo repeat the trick?

Although the most expensive player in the world provided the best opening for his side during their opening game with Ivory Coast, his team as a whole looked far from settled. Korea didn’t appear overawed by Brazil, and even the prospect of Ronaldo, and co bearing down on them isn’t likely to make them flinch either.

CHILE vs. SWITZERLAND
3pm –Port Elizabeth Stadium, Nelson Mandela Bay

The temptation that a victory for either of these sides will assure their passage to the last 16 should make for an entertaining game at Ellis Park, however the attraction for Chile might be greater than for the Swiss.

With a match with Spain still to come, Chile will be keen to claim their second win of the group stage, and hence avoiding a win or bust meeting with the European Champions. Switzerland are in the knowledge that coming away without a win would not be a disaster, with a winnable final game against potential wiping boys Honduras on the final day.

Even if they don’t crave a win like their Chilean opponents, Switzerland do welcome back Alexander Frei to their attack while Chile’s own star forward Humberto Suazo is expected to return. Ottmar Hitzfeld’s side produced the shock of the tournament so far, defeating pre-tournament favorites Spain and will need similar resilience to shut out this elegant Chile side.

SPAIN vs. HONDURAS
7.30pm –Ellis Park, Johannesburg

It’s when a team is up against it that you find out who your great players are, and for Spain they’ll soon be discovering how many shrinking violets they do have in their European Championship winning squad as they aim to re-ignite their World Cup challenge against Honduras.

As many countries would, the Spanish press have torn into Vicente Del Bosque’s side after their showing against Switzerland, which resulted in their first defeat for over a year. To combat this criticism, Del Bosque aims to go for a slightly more offensive approach, which means a starting place for Fernando Torres is on the cards.

Honduras might be the sideshow on this occasion, but as they showed against Chile, as they restricted the fast moving side to a single goal win, they have the ability to frustrate even the best. Their game with Chile was excellent preparation for the Spanish onslaught they will surely receive, and despite being on a yellow card, expect Wilson Palacios to be the first to put himself in the line of fire with his bulldog spirit summing up the Honduran’s courage.

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