Argentina took it to penalties before Serge Romero led Argentina to a fantastic victory. They go on to play Germany in the finals.
Netherlands vs Argentina:
Argentina had a free kick in the 11th. The cross was cleared by Van Persie.
Sneijder drove from outside the box in the 12th, but it was way wide. That tactical battle I talked about in my 23 man squad article came to fruition, as Mascherano made a beautiful tackle on Sneijder.
Messi had a free kick in the 14th from the perfect position. WHAT A SAVE BY CILLESSEN! Messi’s free kick wasn’t really high enough to beat the keeper.
Argentina won a corner in the 18th. Messi’s low corner was cleared by De Jong.
Argentina had another corner in the 21st. Messi took it this time, but Van Persie cleared it.
Vlaar gave Argentina a corner after Perez’s cross was going in to Messi in the 23rd. Van Gaal wants his teams to move on the counter. WHAT A CORNER! GARAY GOT TO IT, but he headed way over thanks to some good defence from Vlaar.
Javier Mascherano was on the floor injured in the 27th minute after an aerial duel with De Jong. De Jong certainly didn’t mean to injure him, but he returned to the field anyway.
Netherlands had a corner in the 31st. Could De Vrij double his tally? Romero fisted Sneijder’s corner.
Higuain got a warning from the ref for a challenge on Sneijder in the 36th that had the midfielder limping.
Messi won a free kick on the right touchline in the 38th. Martins Indi also got a ref warning.
Sneijder was injured in the 36th minute challenge. He now went on the ground. He may have to come off, probably for Memphis Depay, Jonathan De Guzman, Jordy Clasie or Klaas-Jan Huntelaar.
Bruno Martins Indi was shown yellow in the 44th for stepping on Messi’s foot. Messi had a free kick from a good spot again. His cross in the 45th was caught by Cillessen before an offensive foul was given.
Half Time: Netherlands 0-0 Argentina
Half Time Report:
This match is so cagey! Both sides were trying to play with a tough midfield and breaking on the counter. Argentina got closer by setpieces, and Netherlands had far too many offisdes.
The 2nd half started, as Janmaat came on for Bruno Martins Indi. Kuyt shifted to LWB and Blind to LCB.
Robben won a free kick after Demichelis challenged him, and Demichelis was shown yellow. The card was a bit harsh, but still a foul. Netherlands had an opening in the 49th. Sneijder’s free kick was just over.
Messi broke through, but he was offside in the 50th.
HIGUAIN! He got a header in the box but he headed it down and way off in the 58th!
Nigel De Jong came out for the only Dutch outfielder who hasn’t come on yet, Jordy Clasie. Classic Van Gaal.
Janmaat lunged at Biglia in the 62nd, but he avoided his studs so he wasn’t carded. Biglia had to be stretchered off first. He didn’t use the stretcher, but he strapped his arm.
Janmaat was down injured in the 69th.
Argentina had a free kick in the 72nd, on the right touchline around the box. His kick curled out.
VAN PERSIE! HE WAS OFFSIDE AGAIN FROM JANMAAT’S CROSS!
HIGUAIN HITS THE SIDE NETTING AFTER A GREAT CROSS! I think it was probably offside anyway, but the ref called for Cillessen ball.
Blind won a free kick half way into the Argentinian half in the 77th.
Higuain and Enzo Perez made way in the 82nd for Sergio Aguero and Rodrigo Palacio. The former returned from an injury.
Rojo drove from very far in the 83rd, but Cillessen saved it. Aguero got in the way of Cillessen’s clearance.
Neherlands had a corner in the 86th minute, but Sneijder’s cross was cleared.
ROBBEN! HE GOT THROUGH BUT MASCHERANO GOT HIS SHOT AND SLID IN! Corner to Netherlands!
Full Time: Netherlands 0-0 Argentina
Van Persie came off for Klaas-Jan Huntelaar in the 96th. This meant Krul couldn’t come on for a hypothetical shootout, as this was the third substitution.
Sneijder had a corner, but it was cleared.
Robben drove from far in the 99th, but Romero stopped it.
Lavezzi came off for Maxi Rodriguez in the 100th. Both sides had finished their substitutions.
Mascherano won a free kick half way into the Dutch half in the 104th minute. Klaas-Jan Huntelaar was shown yellow. Cillessen punched the cross out, but just barely.
PALACIO! His cross went to Aguero, but the Manchester City striker couldn’t get to it and Janmaat cleared for a corner in the 106th.
ET Half Time: Netherlands 0-0 Argentina
Kuyt made a strong challenge on Zabaleta that injured the right back in the 107th. Any injuries would reduce the respective side to 10 men, as both sides are out of substitutions. Zabaleta’s lip was swollen. He came back on, but it may be tough for him to stay on.
De Vrij took a drive from far, but it was wide in the 110th minute.
PALACIO! He was open and 1 on 1 in the box, but he headed straight into Cillessen’s hands in the 115th!
MAXI RODRIGUEZ! He got a volley from a Messi cross but it was straight into Cillessen!
KUYT! Janmaat got a ball into Kuyt, but his shot deflected off an Argentinian defender and went to Rojo, who cleared in the 119th.
ET Full Time: Netherlands 0-0 Argentina
The match went to shootout, which was unfortunate for Van Persie, who came off. That was a real blow for Netherlands; no Van Persie, no Krul.
Ron Vlaar shot first. ROMERO SAVED IT! Penalties Netherlands 0-0 Argentina
Messi was next up… he was never going to miss. Netherlands 0-1 Argentina Penalties
Arjen Robben went up next… bottom corner! Penalties Netherlands 1-1 Argentina
Ezequiel Garay came up to kick… GOAL! Netherlands 1-2 Argentina
Sneijder was next… MISS! WHAT A SAVE! Penalties Netherlands 1-2 Argentina
Aguero was next… Cillessen touched it in! Netherlands 1-3 Argentina Penalties
Dirk Kuyt went to kick… GOAL! Penalties Netherlands 2-3 Argentina
GAME! Maxi Rodriguez! IT IS OVER! Netherlands 2-4 Argentina Penalties
FINAL SCORE: ARGENTINA 1-0 NETHERLANDS; Goals, SO; MOTM ROMERO
Serge Romero- He could win the golden glove, as he has the most clean sheets and now the performances to back it. 9
Marcos Rojo- He was threatening from the right. 7
Javier Mascherano- He was a better centre back than the 2 centre backs, and a better attacker than Ezequiel Lavezzi, Sergio Aguero, and Gonzalo Higuain. 9.5
Lucas Biglia- He played well as the box-to-box midfielder. 7
Lionel Messi- This was archetypal, although we are still waiting for a Messi goal in the knockouts. 8
Dirk Kuyt- How does he cover all of the pitch? 7.5
Nigel De Jong and Jordy Clasie- Van Gaal charged Nigel De Jong to mark Messi, and Clasie when De Jong came off, and both did fantastic jobs. 7.5
Wesley Sneijder- He was poor from the setpiece, but his runs from midfield were simply brilliant. 7
Arjen Robben- He should’ve ended the game in the 90th minute, but Mascherano was brilliant. 8
This sets up a 3rd place match with Netherlands and Brazil, but more importantly an Argentina-Germany final. Who will bring it home?