Australia v Spain - Match Preview: United star hoping for a chance

Manchester United midfielder Juan Mata will be hoping to make an impact for Spain in their dead-rubber game against Australia.

To be played on Monday 23rd June 2014 at 17:00. Venue: Arena da Baixada, Curitiba.

Odds: Australia 6/1, Draw 15/4, Spain 2/5

Preview & injury news

With this being a dead rubber, both sides will be looking to leave the competition with their heads held high. It’s fair to say that it’s been two very different tales for these nations; Spain have had a disastrous campaign, with shock defeats to the Netherlands and Chile. No one expected them to go out in the group stage, and even Xabi Alonso has come out and said that Spain’s dominance could now be over. Australia, despite being out, have given this World Cup an entertaining twist. They’ve played brilliantly, scoring against Chile and then coming from behind to lead against the Netherlands for a brief period.

Australia will want to continue their fine form while Spain will be looking to at least get one win under their belt before they bow out of the World Cup.

Tim Cahill is suspended for this game. There are no other injury worries for Australia and Spain.

Key stats

1) Spain have conceded seven goals so far, one fewer than the number of goals conceded from Euro 2008 & 2012 and World Cup 2010 combined.

2) David Villa, who could get the nod against Australia, will get the chance to extend his lead at the top of Spain’s all-time top goal scorer list. He currently sits there with 58 goals in 96 caps.

3) Andres Iniesta could make his 100th appearance for Spain.

Five players to watch

Koke - Should get a chance to start and show everyone why he has been a very talked about man. He will be looking to prove what he can do. 

Mile Jedinak - Scored a penalty in his last match and will again be pivotal to Australia’s chances of getting anything out of this game.

Juan Mata - One of those who hasn’t had any World Cup minutes yet and will be looking to make his mark. Certainly has the potential and was in great form towards the end of the season for Manchester United.

Mathew Ryan - The Australian keeper has been pretty busy so far but has shown he has the potential to make some great saves.

Santi Cazorla - Hasn’t had many minutes and will be looking to show what he can do, especially from set-pieces.

Last time they met

These sides have never faced each other.

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