Brazil improved in the second period, but Netherlands made it 3-0 late on courtesy of a close-range finish from Georginio Wijnaldum.
Here, Sports Mole dissects the 90 minutes of action between the two rivals.
On target: 5
On target: 5
Was the result fair?
Even the most ardent of Brazilian supporters would struggle to make a case for their side this evening. A response had been expected following the 7-1 defeat to Germany in the semi-finals, but it simply did not arrive. Netherlands were 2-0 up inside 16 minutes and, from that moment, played much of the game in second gear.
Brazil improved in terms of workrate in the second 45 minutes, but there was a distinct lack of quality in the final third. Netherlands did not create chance after chance, but the European outfit always looked in control, even during periods where they did not have much of the ball. Netherlands did not have to be particularly impressive to beat Brazil 3-0 this evening, which is perhaps the most worrying aspect of the defeat for the five-time champions, whose summer has ended in disappointment.
Inside the first minute, Brazil were full of running and energy and forced Netherlands back to their own goal from kickoff. However, all their plans were thrown into disarray after two minutes when the Dutch were given a penalty. The award of the spot kick was perhaps slightly harsh, with Thiago Silva making contact with Arjen Robben outside the box, but the Brazil skipper was lucky to stay on the field and collect just a yellow card.
David Luiz had another horror moment just 13 minutes later when his backwards header fell straight to Blind, who send Netherlands into a 2-0 lead. From that moment, it was always going to be difficult for the host nation to respond. In fairness, they improved in the second period, but it was a Brazilian side completely lacking in quality.
Oscar looked the most likely for long spells, but the likes of Jo and Willian really struggled to influence matters in the final third. There was not too much in the match for long periods, but more poor defending cost the Selecao the chance to restore some pride. On this form, it is difficult to remember how they managed to overcome South American sides Chile and Colombia, both of whom were impressive this summer.
Aside from their 5-1 win over Spain, Netherlands have not particularly played the best football this summer. However, under the stewardship of Louis van Gaal, the Dutch have become an extremely difficult team to beat once more. Van Persie had been criticised for his performances in the knockout stages, but the Manchester United forward returned to form this evening.
Robben was also back to his best, with Brazil simply unable to deal with the attacker's pace and movement. Special mentions must also be made for Blind and Stefan de Vrij - two players that have increased their growing reputations in this World Cup. In truth, Netherlands did not need to be at their best for long spells this evening, with their two early goals taking the fight out of their opponents.
Their third goal did not arrive until the latter stages, but they were never really in danger of throwing the match away, despite some strong pressure from the hosts. Defensively, Netherlands have been very good this summer and that was again the case this evening, with Ron Vlaar, De Vrij and Bruno Martins Indi a solid trio.
Sports Mole's man of the match
Stefan de Vrij: It is understood that Van Gaal wants Feyenoord defender De Vrij to join him at Manchester United this summer and, based on his performances over the last month, it is not too difficult to see why that is the case. The centre-back is just 22 years old, but has such intelligence and a terrific reading of the game. Both of those attributes were on display this evening, with Brazil struggling time and time again to get the best of the youngster.
Unfortunately, Luiz has to be recognised in this section once more. It has been a torrid last few days for the Paris Saint-Germain centre-back and that continued this evening. When Jonathan de Guzman lifted a deep cross into the Brazilian box, Luiz had the decision to either head over his own crossbar or attempt to clear into play. He chose the latter and his header dropped straight to Blind, who fired his effort into the top corner under little pressure. Luiz's ability on the ball is not in question, but his decision-making has once more proved extremely poor this summer.
In truth, Djamel Haimoudi really struggled this evening. The Algerian made not one, but two incorrect calls in the first major incident of the match. Firstly, Silva's contact on Robben was outside the box, while the Brazilian defender was the last man and should have been sent from the field. Instead of awarding a free kick and a red card, Haimoudi pointed to the penalty spot and showed Silva just a yellow.
The official also took the surprising decision to book Brazil's Oscar for simulation in the second period, when replays indicated that the midfielder had been felled by Blind inside the box. Throughout the 90 minutes, the referee did not really allow the match to flow, which harmed the tempo, especially in the second period. Overall, it was a poor night for Haimoudi.
Brazil: Brazil must now address the long-term future of head coach Luiz Felipe Scolari ahead of their friendly against Colombia in September.
Netherlands: The Dutch return to action with a friendly against Italy in September.