Flashback 1998

Chile - Italy 2-2
1-0 Vieri 10'
1-1 Salas 45'
1-2 Salas 49'
2-2 Baggio (P) 85'

11 June 1998
Parc Lescure, Bordeaux
Attendance: 31,800
Referee: Lucien Bouchardeau (Niger)

Chile's first game of the World Cup in France 1998. Christian Vieri scores early but Chile shocks Italy by coming back and taking the lead by two goals from Marcelo Salas. Roberto Baggio snipes the hand of a Chilean defender and is given a penalty, which he scores on. We all hated that referee this summer.

Chile - Austria 1-1
1-0 Salas 70'
1-1 Polster 90'

17 June 1998
Stade Geoffroy-Guichard, Saint-Étienne
Attendance: 30,600
Referee: Gamal Al-Ghandour (Egypt)

Chile played now Austria in Saint-Étienne. The match was not as vivid as the one against Italy, but Chile controlled the game. Ivan Zamorano was very active and played great with Salas who scored the first goal. In overtime of the second half, Austria had their chance, Polster shot from a distance and scored beautifully in the right corner, unreachable for Chilean goalkeeper Nelson Tapia.

Chile - Cameroon 1-1
1-0 Sierra 20'
1-1 Mboma 55'

23 June 1998
Stade de la Beaujoire, Nantes
Attendance: 35,500
Referee: Laszlo Vagner (Hungary)

Chile had two point after the first two games, and were in need of at least one more in this game to advance from their group and Cameroon were forced to win. Rigobert Song didn't make it easy for his African team when he was brutal to Zamorano. Chile got a freekick right outside the area and our nr10 'Coto' Sierra scored beautifully. Chile was now in the round of 16. When Mboma scored in the 55th minute, there was a lot of anxiety, but Chile could handle the pressure, and with the help of the referee the game ended at a tie.

Brazil - Chile 4-1
1-0 César Sampaio 11'
2-0 César Sampaio 27'
3-0 Ronaldo (P) 45'
3-1 Salas 68'
4-1 Ronaldo 70'

27 June 1998
Parc des Princes, Paris
Attendance: 45,500
Referee: Marc Batta (France)

Chile stood chance less against Brazil, who made it to the finals (where they lost to France). They had Ronaldo in his finest form and we were down by three goals after the first half. Salas scored and gave us hope, but that was taken away two minutes later when Ronaldo scored his second, and final goal of the game.

If we are unlucky in World Cup 2010, If Chile advance from group H, they will meet the winner/second of group G. Brazil is in that group. I don't think that Chile would stand a chance, once Brazil is pass their group. We have met Brazil several times, and no matter how good Chile plays, Brazil will either way win. That's why my hope is on Dunga, the dream is that Brazil does not advance from group G, because Portugal, the Ivory Coast or North Corea would suit Chile better in the second stages of the World Cup in South Africa.

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