Spain were one of the favorites to lift the World Cup in 2010. They had won the European Championship quite convincingly in 2008 and more or less the same team had been named by manager Vicente del Bosque for the renowned football tournament hosted by South Africa.
However, in the first match, they suffered a shock defeat against Switzerland. Gelson Fernandes scored early in the second half and although coach Vicente del Bosque brought on Fernando Torres, Jesus Navas and Pedro, his side couldn’t find the equaliser.
In the second game, they stabilized their ship with a 2-0 win over Honduras, courtesy of a brace from David Villa. While in the last group game they beat Chile 2-1 to finish top of the table. In the quarter-finals, Spain faced Paraguay. After a lackluster first 45 minutes, both teams took action in the second half. Oscar Cardozo had his penalty saved by Iker Casillas, while Xabi Alonso’s attempt from 12 yards was also stopped at the other end. However, it was again Villa who came to the rescue and scored the winning goal in the 82nd minute.
In the last four, Spain beat Germany 1-0 with Carles Puyol scoring from a corner to set up a top-flight clash with the Netherlands.
In the final, both teams created a flurry of chances throughout the 90 minutes, but none were taken. John Heitinga received his second yellow in extra time which left the Netherlands with 10 men on the pitch. Spain started attacking with more bite and eventually, in the 116th minute, Iniesta latched on to a Cesc Fabregas ball and found the far corner to score the winner, giving the Spain its first and only World Cup trophy.