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Spain join list of World Cup holders to fall at first hurdle

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Following Spain’s recent 2-0 defeat at the hands of Chile, it ensured that the 2010 World Champions would not progress to the knockout stages.

The loss to the South Americans came just five days after their 5-1 drubbing against the Netherlands. But La Roja are not the only side to have struggled when trying to retain the Jules Rimet Trophy....

Italy in 2010

The Azzuri shook the world in 2006, as they beat all the odds to win the World Cup.
They eased through the first round, despite drawing against USA, before scoring a late penalty to get past Australia.

They defeated Ukraine and Germany to reach the final against France.

Italy ended up claiming the title 5-3 on penalties, in a game which saw a moment of madness from Frenchman Zinedine Zidane, as he got sent off for head-butting Marco Materazzi in the chest.

Whilst they were not entirely convincing throughout the tournament, they were a lot worse four years later in South Africa. Italy finished their group with just two points, despite seemingly being favourites against Slovakia, Paraguay and New Zealand.

After 1-1 draws against the latter two nations, the Azzuri had their worst and final game of the tournament against Slovakia.

Italy were 2-0 down thanks to Robert Vittek, before Antonio Di Natale pulled one back.
However, Kamil Kopunek restored the Slovak’s two-goal advantage, and although Fabio Quagliarella scored in injury time, it did not stop their demise and exit from the World Cup.

France in 2002

Les Bleus made a worse start to the 2002 World Cup in Japan and South Korea, losing 1-0 against Senegal, with former Fulham midfielder Papa Bouba Diop scoring the only goal.

This came just four years after France stormed to victory on their own turf, with big victories over Saudi Arabia and South Africa in the group stage. They went on to beat reigning champions Brazil 3-0 in the final.

Just two years later, France were winning again, claiming the Henri Delauney trophy at the 2000 European Championships.

Yet, in 2002 they were knocked out at the group stage with just one point. After their defeat to African side Senegal, Les Bleus claimed a goalless draw over Uruguay.

But they were on the losing side once again, with goals from Dennis Rommedahl and Jon Dahl Tomasson helping Denmark to a 2-0 win over the French. There was also a quick exit for the reigning champions when the biggest sporting competition in the world came to England.

Brazil in 1966

In 1962, Brazil retained the World Cup for their second title, dominating throughout the tournament.

The South American nation even saw off England 3-1 in the quarter finals before going on to beat Czechoslovakia by the same score line in the final.

Yet, it did not end the same way, as they attempted to win their third successive World Cup in England in 1966.

The Selecao started off well in their Group 3, winning 2-0 against Bulgaria, with star players Pele and Garrincha getting on the scoresheet.

Yet, it all went downhill from then on, losing 3-1 to Hungary in the next game.

Portugal then beat them by the same score, with Eusebio netting twice to send the reigning champions crashing out with just two points.

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Topics:
World Cup
Italy Football
Spain Football
Football
Brazil Football

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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