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World Cup Day Seven: Australia v. Netherlands

After their shock defeat of defending champions Spain, Netherlands have the chance to grab favourite status in Group B against Australia.

Paul Gilham
SB Nation's 2014 World Cup Preview'

Australia v. Netherlands
Wednesday, June 18th | 5PM BST/12PM EST
Television Listings | Full Schedule

Group B

Australia gave a good account of themselves in their opener against Chile but came up just short. Now, they face a Netherlands side fresh off demolishing one of the pre-tournament favourites. Whether that means the Dutch really are that good or Spain are—or at least on Friday were—that bad, things won't get any easier for the Socceroos, who were showing signs of tiring late on in their first match and will now be hoping to catch the Dutch feeling over-confident.

This wasn't meant to be Netherlands' tournament, in rebuilding mode after a terrible European Championships and in what appeared one of the toughest groups in Brazil. Then they beat Spain 5-1 and all of a sudden there's talk of a deep run. First, though, they need to prove that victory wasn't a one off. The kind of fluke result that sometimes crops up in a short tournament. If the Dutch really are back and in top form, it could be a bad day for Australia as Robin van Persie and Arjen Robben look to add to their scoring tallies and rumoured Liverpool target Daley Blind seeks to further nail down the left back position for his country.

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