SALVADOR, Brazil (AP) — The Netherlands team has to come back down to earth while Spain has to pick itself up and look for a way to bounce back from one of its worst defeats.
The morning after the rampant Netherlands beat reigning World Cup champion Spain 5-1, emotions in the two camps were starkly different, yet the emphasis for both vastly experienced coaches was the same: refocus on the next Group B match at the World Cup.
Louis van Gaal's team was euphoric after the win that avenged, at least in part, its defeat by Spain in the 2010 World Cup final, but the coach stressed that his players still have plenty of work to do, starting with the next game.
"We don't have anything yet," Van Gaal said. "We've made a pretty start. If you beat Australia, then you've made a good start."
It was very pretty. After going behind to a Xabi Alonso penalty, Robin van Persie equalized just before half time with a stunning header that changed dramatically swung the momentum toward the Netherlands.
The Manchester United struck again after the break, Arjen Robben scored two memorable goals and defender Stefan de Vrij converted a Wesley Sneijder free kick in a second-half blitz that stunned the Spaniards and raised questions about the aging world and European champion team's stamina.