Australia's Tim Cahill picked up a second yellow card of the 2014 Brazil World Cup in the first half of the Socceroos' encounter with the Netherlands on Wednesday.
The caution—for a foul on Bruno Martins Indi—means he will now be suspended for what could be a crucial encounter with Spain in the Aussies' last Group B game, per ESPN FC:
Uh oh. Tim Cahill receives a yellow card and is out of Australia's final group stage match against Spain. #AUSvsNED— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) June 18, 2014
The 34-year-old is Australia's most important player and had proven as much earlier in the half when he scored a stunning goal to tie things up at 1-1 in Porto Alegre, per the BBC's Farayi Mungazi:
Tim Cahill has scored the goal of this World Cup. You won't see a better strike in the remaining matches. #Brazil2014— Farayi Mungazi (@BBCFarayi) June 18, 2014
Unsurprisingly, the news of his impending suspension is seen by many as a huge loss for Australia in their pursuit to advance to the last 16, per news.com.au:
Furthermore, beIN Sports' Matteo Bonetti points out it could signal the end of Cahill's World Cup career, as the Aussies are now unlikely to reach the knockout rounds and his age makes his imminent retirement likely:
Damnit. Tim Cahill booked and he'll miss final group stage game. Barring a miracle, this is his last World Cup game for #AUS— Matteo Bonetti (@TheCalcioGuy) June 18, 2014
However, The Telegraph's Jonathan Liew reckons that—after the goal he scored—now is as good a time as any to call it a day on the international front:
Cahill booked, he'll miss the next match. To be honest, if I were him I'd just retire after this anyway.— Jonathan Liew (@jonathanliew) June 18, 2014
Spanish newspaper AS was quick to point out that Spain will likely be very happy about the suspension, as it gives them a better opportunity of making it out of the group following their 5-1 mauling to the Netherlands in their opener:
Good news for #ESP. Tim Cahill is suspended for the final group game.— AS English (@English_AS) June 18, 2014
The paper also noted that the foul that drew the caution spelt the end of Martins Indi's game as the Dutchman had to leave the field injured:
The tackle that earnt Cahill a yellow has left Martins Indi in a bad way and he's being stretchered off— AS English (@English_AS) June 18, 2014
Australia will now do very well to get even a point out of Spain without the talismanic presence of Cahill.
Though a great goalscorer and Socceroos legend, he showed a lack of discipline in drawing the card, which could damage his country's prospects in this World Cup.