NETHERLANDS V CHILE
Guest referee: John Lucas — Music writer
You thought this was all over, didn't you? Oh no. This doesn't stop until July 13 (!), so settle down at the back.
Before we let John Lucas loose on Netherlands vs Chile, it's time to very quickly explain the 'theme' for this new round. Basically, having done the highest-charting homegrown single in the first round, followed by TV talent show winners from each country for the second, we've now moved onto national anthems and specifically national anthems performed by popstars (where that's not possible we've just picked someone off YouTube to be honest).
So here John has the honour of comparing Take That playing a recording of the Dutch anthem following a Gary Barlow monologue and a suitably dramatic Diva-esque rendition of the Chilean one. Not only that but there are now two matches at 5pm and two at 9pm! We live in exciting times.
Take That — 'Wilhelmus'
“National Anthems are inherently a bit silly and provincial so they tend to work best when attached to a suitably grandstanding occasion. Yelling along to God Save The Queen in a stadium in questionable harmony with 40,000 teary-eyed fellow patriots is one of the most soul-stirring pleasures of international sport. Doing the same thing on your own on your local street corner is likely to cause people to assume you're a mad racist. Take That have never been afraid of a bit of bombast, so attempting to crowbar a national singalong at this Dutch gig isn't quite as awkward as it could have been. Still, this performance screams ill-judged time-filler. There's no getting away from the fact that — unless Gary Barlow has been quietly naturalised for tax purposes — Take That aren't Dutch. None of them. Not even Jason Orange. Also, they haven't even bothered to learn it themselves, they're essentially just getting the crowd to entertain themselves while the sound guy replaces a dodgy amp or something. In the annals of great pop concert audience participation moments, this is not exactly Beyonce doing Irreplaceable at Glastonbury. It's not even Kelly Rowland wheeling out Can't Nobody at Wiltshire Crimestoppers.”
Annie Murath — 'Canción Nacional'
“Another crowd-singalong here, but this time the singer a) appears to be from Chile and b) actually knows the words. This is very nice — the crowd seem into it, the singer is on a balcony throwing her arms around like Eva Peron and there's even a sign-language interpreter for maximum inclusivity. It's a very polite-sounding National Anthem too. If you stood on a street corner singing this, you'd probably make a few quid and offend nobody (unless you were in Bolivia or something). For all that — and the complete lack of Gary Barlow, this is a home run. That's a football metaphor, right?"
John's full time score:
Netherlands 0 — Chile 5
Now you can vote for your own favourite.[poll id="47"]
Next up: Cameroon vs Brazil and Croatia vs Mexico