The Spaniards became the second team to have no chance of playing beyond the group stages after Australia lost to Holland earlier that day.
After Spain’s disastrous opening game against Holland, which they lost 5-1, they needed a win against Chile.
The Chilean players prevented Spain from playing with their usual comfortable rhythm, and this seemed to stifle Vicente del Bosque’s team.
The fast and fiercely competitive game seemed to suit the South Americans, who opened the scoring through Eduardo Vargas. Vargas’s goal came after some wonderful counterattacking from Alexis Sánchez and Charles Aránguiz.
Spain did not seem comfortable with the match’s fast pace. The team seemed rushed going forward and fell open to counterattacks. Xabi Alonso was forced to play further back and to make more tackles than he is used to. The Real Madrid midfielder had a torrid time trying to deal with the pace of the Chilean players and gave away a free kick. In defending the free kick, Iker Casillas punched the ball straight to Aránguiz, who had an easy finish.
Alonso was replaced by young Atlético Madrid star Koke, with Del Bosque hoping that Koke’s pace could break the Chilean defence.
The majority of the half was played in the Chilean half with Spain dominating possession but looking vulnerable to the counterattack.
Spain had a chance to pull a goal back after an Andrés Iniesta free kick caused a scramble in the 18-yard area. The ball fell to Sergio Busquets but the Barcelona player sliced it wide of the goal. Spain continued to throw everything into their attacking efforts, with Arsenal’s Santi Cazorla forcing Chilean goalkeeper Claudio Bravo into a brilliant save.
Bravo was kept busy during the last ten minutes, denying Iniesta from range and Cazorla from a free kick. His efforts in the posts kept the score line 2-0.
Spain will play their last match in Brazil against Australia on 23 June, while Chile will take on Holland on the same day.