Spain on top of the world
Andres Iniesta capped a fine display with the winning goal as Spain beat 10-man Holland 1-0 after extra-time in to win the World Cup for the first time.
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The first half at Soccer City was littered with yellow cards shown by English referee Howard Webb, who was kept busy in a tetchy encounter on a night when Holland shamed the 'Total Football' for which they have been synonymous since the first of what is now three final defeats in 1974.
Their tough-tackling approach totally disrupted Spain's rhythm and the worse offender was Nigel de Jong, who somehow got away with kicking Xabi Alonso high in the chest, seemingly right under the nose of Webb.
Mark van Bommel was also lucky not to see red for a string of late lunges - but it was Holland who had the best first-half chance, with Arjen Robben drawing a fine save from a diving Iker Casillas on 45 minutes.
But for all of Spain's possession, Holland always looked dangerous on the break and should have scored on 62 minutes.
Wesley Sneijder's superb ball sent Robben scampering through on goal and the Bayern Munich flyer bided his time before picking his spot, but Casillas pulled off a stunning save with his right boot to divert the ball inches wide.
Then on 77 minutes Sergio Ramos wasted a golden chance at the other end when he powered a free header in the box over the crossbar.
The game went to extra-time and Holland defender John Heitinga saw red for a second bookable offence after pulling Iniesta back.
That led to all-out pressure from Spain, who finally broke the deadlock on 116 minutes when substitute Cesc Fabregas set up Iniesta, who lashed a wonderful right-footed strike into the back of the net.
Holland's Dirk Kuyt suggested Webb cost his nation World Cup success.
The Liverpool forward said: "We are angry because we were so close. The referee was slightly more for them than for us. That ultimately cost us the cup."
But Holland manager Bert van Marwijk said: "The best team won. I am disappointed. It is a world championship and we have just lost a final."