A chance to watch the second semi-final from the World Cup. Argentina and the Netherlands meet in Arena Corinthians, Sao Paulo.
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Cup replay. It is the second semifinal from S?o Paulo. Argentina
against the Netherlands, watched by Mark Lawrenson and Guy Mowbray.
COMMENTATOR: Robben plays in a Dutch side showing one change from the
dramatic quarterfinal win over Costa Rica. Robben and Ron Vlaar off it.
-- are fit. The former Manchester City man comes back in at Memphis
Depay's expense. Four of them got to the final, four years ago. No
coincidence they were the first four in line to take an score penalties
in the last game. Tettey pause back -- Turkey's C?neyt Cakir is the
referee, having taken charge of two group games. He also had a semifinal
at Euro 2012. Nine yellow cards out of his pocket that day in the fiery
derby between Spain and Portugal, that went all the way to penalties.
Argentina have Marcos Rojo back in the side after suspension, having
missed the quarterfinal win over Belgium. He replaces Jose Basanta
with Enzo Perez coming into midfield to replace Angel Di Maria. It is
only the second time the Benfica play has started in competitive
internationals. Sergio Aguero is fit and he is on the substitutes bench.
And as usual, it is all eyes online messy, -- online or messy, as he
goes one cup better than Diego Maradona. -- all eyes on messy macro
-- Messi. The frustrated Angel Di Maria can
only watch and hope that his team get to the final and that he can
prove his fitness. The Argentina players are wearing black armbands
in memory of Alfredo Di Stefano who passed away on Monday, aged 88. Now
a moment for all to mark the life of surely the greatest player never to
have played at the World Cup finals. Whatever the outcome, we are going
to see a final that we have had before. Be it memories of 86 and 90,
stirred, then it was West Germany against Argentina, or you have to go
back to 1974, for Germany against the Dutch. We should get a final to
savour, and hopefully, a second semifinal which will not disappoint
either, Mark. No, we have contrasting formations as well,
3-4-1-2, against 4-2-3-1. We have too assumed that Nigel de Jong, who
had a fitness test yesterday, a kin to match conditions. You cannot do
what he has supposedly done to his groin and be able to play in ten
days, can you? Huge trust placed in him and the medical staff by Louis
Van Gaal. We will watch an idol to don carefully, certainly in the
opening stages. -- we will watch Nigel de Jong. De Jong, getting his
chance in the semifinal, having missed the semifinal four years ago
through suspension. He should have been sent off in the final, by
rights, for his karate kicked on Xabi Alonso. -- karate kick.
Ezequiel Lavezzi ran straight into Stefan de Vrij.
Zabaleta is on the move down the right. Peres could not get it to him
straightaway. Martin Demichelis played against
Belgium. This is his second game of the World Cup. The Manchester City
man was recalled prior to the tournament, after over two and a
half years away from the international scene, reward for his
second half of the season form in Manchester. It's nearly bounced back
to Messi who was being policed by Nigel de Jong. That would be the
main reason for his inclusion. Interesting to see in the Argentina
rucksacks, are far and how quickly Zabaleta got forward. -- Argentina
attack. Zabaleta has not got forward much in the tournament.
Alejandro Sabella, we used to call them Alex when he was at Sheffield
United and Leeds, with Enzo Perez rather than Sergio Aguero, which
suggest that Argentina are very wary of the Dutch counterattacking
ability. The other macro the Dutch front three, Sneijder, Robben and
Van Persie three matchwinners, ultimately.
A great noise, as there has been for every single Argentina game. The
most fervent bunch of supporters that there has been at this World
Cup. Of course, they have not had far to travel, but my, have they
travelled. I think it is two and a half hours from one of their race,
here, biplane? Most of them have come by camper van. Two and a half
weeks, then. Filling the roads and filling the air with noise.
Biglia, the Latvia midfielder, has kept his place ahead of Fernando
Gago, as the midfield shield alongside Mascherano. We have seen
Messi touched the ball once so far, if that? Yes.
It bounced back to Demichelis a little strongly from Mascherano. He
looks quicker with his haircut, doesn't he? Seriously, you does.
Very strange, that. A little less wind resistance for Martin
Demichelis, now. In fairness to him, from December onwards, he came
back and was brilliant for city. Yes, he was but he was a figure of
fun for a while. Collected nicely by Sneijder, poked
through to Robben. He is up against Zabaleta, who is forcing him away,
and timed his tackle well. Few full-backs
and timed his tackle well. Few better. And if you notice, he did
not dare tackle Robben until he went out of the box and then he really
did go to tackle him. The way he has played over the last couple of
seasons, he must be a candidate for best full-back in the world. He
would certainly be up there but Philipp Lahm would have a shout as
well, wouldn't he? It depends where he wants to play, that day.
Be flag has gone up and Argentina will have free kick. Robben did not
hear the whistle, but then turns and sees the flag and wags his finger. A
bit of a shaky start for both players on the near side, Dirk Kuyt
in Orange and Marcos Rojo in blue and white. They cannot find their
own men, can they? Good movement, well taken but then
crowded out. It needed the parents, Demichelis and Garay. -- the pair of
them. The Netherlands, content to pass it
around, move and try to find spaces. They completed a remarkable 692
passes against Costa Rica. The position is slightly different
today. But three at the back is a wheelie good system as well for
them. The two wingbacks, Daley Blind and Dirk Kuyt, give them the wits,
and then Sneijder can drop in Robben and Van Persie. -- give them the
width. It is a very wide back three as well. They are very good, because
when they need to be, they are also very tight.
Messi, getting involved. And he is off on one. Only so far, this time.
The two players that have completed more dribbles than anyone else on
the field today, Messi and Robben. A useful run from Higuain. Now Messi
takes over. Messi is down on the floor. Wasn't that a free kick? He
is not getting one. Into Messi's feet, and Dirk Kuyt
with a good challenge. Ron Vlaar has measured that nicely for Arjen
Robben. It came off Garay, and is a Dutch throw. We nearly had one of
those classic counters. Lucky Garay got a touch otherwise they were in
trouble, because he was on his backside and out of the game.
Lavezzi, forced out by Stefan de Vrij. He claims and gets the free
kick. That is a free kick. He nudges him off the ball.
coming across to have a word. I wonder whether he wants a short free
kick so he can run and Robben and Sneijder, I think, isn't it? Only
two orange shirted players out, here so Messi could get on a run and
build up some steam. It looks like they have dismissed that option for
now, though. Jasper Cillessen, back in the Dutch goal. He has recovered
from the disappointment of being left out of the penalty shoot out
against Costa Rica. That is way over the top from Enzo Perez. I thought
you were going to say it was a clearance. Why didn't they give it
-- why didn't they give it to Messi, running against two forwards? That
does not make sense. Both sides still testing each other out, after
11 minutes, getting a feel for things in the very cool S?o Paulo
air. The contrasting climactic conditions of this tournament in
sharp focus. It is a grey day but a great day for playing in terms of
the conditions. The city of drizzle, not disappointing. And traffic. Lots
and lots of traffic. And fireworks. All shapes, sizes and sounds. At all
hours. Although at one stage last night, with the Brazil fiasco, it
sounded like more than fireworks. Distress flares. The Bellas has
still got it! -- Alex Sabella. The fans in Yorkshire will remember
those touches. Robben, seen off by Mascherano. But
a little bit hasty with the clearance and Sneijder had a go. A
bit hasty with the shot, too. Yes, he set -- it set up nicely for him
and he thought he was under more pressure than he was. Dirk Kuyt
heading it is Sneijder, one touch, hit early, but he hit it even
earlier than that. Argentina have not been behind at any game in this
World Cup finals, yet. The only team to have won every game so far, and
all by a single goal. Nobody has had a steam-rollering from them. Lovely
ball, that, and they could be in. Stefan de Vrij coming across and
that is a tumble and a free kick. What a place for it, especially with
the players Argentina have. That was good stuff from Enzo Perez. He was
played in originally by Higuain, a great ball. It took the two Dutch
defenders out of the game. It is a bit of a daft tackle on the edge of
the area. It is always a risk, any contact. Ron Vlaar, in from the
back, not a lot of contact but when you get any from him, you're going
to fall. Absolutely, and anywhere around the box, and you are going to
fall over. What a chance, for Leonel messy. Nobody else near this. --
Lionel Messi. We'll Jasper Cillessen?
I think the war is big enough. The question for the keeper is whether
he can see what is coming behind it? -- I think the war is big
enough. It is a big wall, as well, because the centre-backs are in it.
Messi, straight through and well held by Cillessen. That is a great
save. Yes, his position was excellent. Because you put the
centre-backs in, Messi has decided he cannot go over them because there
is not enough room to get the ball over and down so he has got to go to
the side. I say great rather than good because how refreshing is it to
see the goalkeeper hold? Considering he missed the last human it is of
the last game as well. -- the last few minutes.
Martins Indi and Daley Blind bothering Messi. But nothing much
does. I think that is the first time we
have mentioned Wijnaldum. And you would remember his name. I can't
even say it. He had a quiet game against Costa Rica, too, the PSV
Eindhoven midfielder. Enzo Perez starts to wander forward
in front of Zabaleta. Lavezzi is seen off it by Nigel de Jong. A nice
trip ball to Sneijder. He is looking for Dirk Kuyt but it won't get
there. A good idea but the wrong execution. He holds his hands up.
Let's have another look at the Messi free kick. You notice how big the
wall is, look at it, in height, I mean. I think we will go back from
great save to good save. A throw your cap on its save. A say.
Zabaleta saves the ball from going out of play and it is up to Higuain,
but Cillessen is there again. They handled the substitution, Tim Krul
coming on for Jasper Cillessen, brilliantly. They put both
goalkeepers up at the press Conference the next day and both
spoke brilliantly. Leasing about it is, why wouldn't Cillessen, he has
just got into the World Cup semifinal? You would not be sulking.
I suppose, but initially it was a shock.
Disquiet intriguing, this game. No real chances so far, but Argentina
look a little bit better going forward. They look like they have
one or two more ideas than the Dutch. And without Batman, Angel Di
Maria. It was touch and go whether he would make it for the final if
Argentina win. Then again, we thought Nigel de Jong was ruled out
for the rest of the tournament. So who do we believe? It is amazing how
muscles can heal quickly when there is a World Cup semifinal or final
place at stake. The other thing is, because they are way, you can work
on these guys almost 24-hour the day. You have got three or four
physios, and it is round-the-clock treatment.
The Argentina supporters just cranking it up a little bit in the
stands. Higuain and Lavezzi waiting, Higuain
trying to get across in front of Stefan de Vrij and it is a corner.
Good play by Argentina, Stefan de Vrij and it is a corner.
Holland no exact what they wanted to do, getting down there left and they
still got there through Zabaleta. -- know exactly. Stefan de Vrij knew
where the ball was going and he knew where Higuain was. Who is he
watching now? I think he is on Demichelis. The ball is going to
come in from Messi, and it is flat. Lavezzi's ball in an Cillessen
gathers comfortably. -- and Cillessen. Starting his 10th
International in a row, the Ajax goalkeeper. But all he did then was
put Dirk Kuyt under pressure. Bruno Martins Indi cannot keep up
with Lavezzi, here. He just about got back to stop any kind of cross.
And he stopped the next effort. I wonder whether Lavezzi might have
been better off going for the byline? Just inviting Martins Indi
into the tackle. Messi is not on this corner. A
different play from Argentina. The likes of Marcos Rojo in the box for
Lavezzi's delivery. But cleared by Van Persie.
It always looked likely to bounce over Lavezzi's head from Mascherano.
I like the line from Louis van Gaal, after his penalties excess --
penalty success come his decision to put on Tim Krul. He does not smile
very often but in the post-match press Conference he said, " it
worked, it was beautiful", and with a knowing smile said, "I am proud of
that". It could have gone very wrong. Yes. Huntelaar came on and
scored in one of the earlier games as well, another masterstroke. He
has changed it around quite a lot. Before games, during games. In fact,
until that change of goalkeeper against Costa Rica, it was probably
the game in which he had done the least tinkering. Nothing to change
so far in this one, and no change in the score.
A couple of saves from Cillessen but nothing for Romero to do, yet. It
might change with Van Persie, here, trying to pull it back for Dirk
Kuyt. Lavezzi just got a yard away from
Daley Blind. He is much quicker than Blind and he is off-balance as well.
Dirk Kuyt helping it away. I wonder if that is one of the reasons why
they have made the change, putting Lavezzi on that side and Enzo Perez
on the left, where he is on the ball. Returned to him by Messi. Enzo
Perez wanted to play it back once again to be skipper but it is a
corner. I'm not sure he could feed it through. It was almost a dummy
run from Messi. A good touch from Ron Vlaar, as well.
Lavezzi will take this. Argentina putting a level of pressure on.
Nothing too testing, just yet, for the Dutch defence. Higuain has just
put Dirk Kuyt away, right under the referee's knows. -- has just pushed.
In from Lavezzi and over the top. It was a chance and it looked like an
Argentina head got to it first. Wasn't it Demichelis? He was the one
claiming at first that it should have been another corner, but it was
Garay, round the back of Demichelis. Has he got a kick in the head for
his troubles as well? Yes. It did not look as though the ball came off
Ron Vlaar. Note. He will be OK. -- know. He has broken his nose a view
times as a centre-back. He completed a 6 million euros move to Zenit St
Petersburg in Russia from Benfica, a couple of weeks ago. She looks like
she has got your microphone, Mark. She would be better, that is for
certain. Cillessen, coolly done. That was a
slight smile, a wry grin. De Jong looking for Van Persie. It was a
little bit different but just for a second... It went through my mind as
well. He just had Gary a little closer to him. He did not quite have
the room he needed but Cillessen made room beautifully, there. The
flag is up anyway. Oh, well, the thought was good. Jeering from the
Dutch fans when they realised that. That is what they can do, in a spit
second, the front three, Sneijder, Robben, Van Persie. When you think
you are comfortable, bang. -- split second.
Plenty of time for Gary and Demichelis.
There has been a collision on halfway and there is real concern,
here. I think it was Wijnaldum, he
realised straight away there was a problem with Mascherano.
realised straight away there was a problem with This was it.
When you had the back of somebody else's head... Not a lot you can do
about it. Apart from field your own head. We have seen more of Di Maria
on the bench than we did in some games. He had an absolute nightmare
but scored that fantastic goal late on. To beat Switzerland. How he
wishes he was out there now. Angel Di Maria sidelined I a thigh strain.
Mascherano not sidelined yet but laid out with a sore head. That is
the aftermath. Wijnaldum tries to hold him up. It is a boxer blow.
Hopefully he is OK. Dirk Kuyt said, I told you we would get you! They
will just have to make sure there are no effects of concussion. We
have seen one game in this stadium, Alvaro Pereira, the Uruguayan
left-back, the doctor told him to come off and he was having none of
it. I suspect Mascherano might be similar. He is the same make,
chiselled. Possibly unhinged slightly! He might go and boot
somebody and say to the referee, there is still a bit of concussion
there! Which way will he kicked it. He is all right. A pity for Holland,
they could have been on the break. So many Argentinian players on the
wrong side of the ball there. It was a good job but did not come off the
head of De Vrij with any sort of major balloon effect. The goalkeeper
cannot have shouted to him, he had loads of time and it was a nice,
cushioned header. Van Persie handled it. Did he? I don't know what with!
Not his hand! It was with his chest. He was a doubt with a stomach
problem, Van Persie. Daryl Janmaat the same, he is fit to be on the
bench for the Netherlands. The belated tried to play it through
Daley Blind. -- Zabaleta. We have not seen Daley Blind as an attacking
force yet. He has a good left foot. Dirk Kuyt had pulled out wide but
the option was closed down and taken away by Perez. Former Dutch players
had doubts about Cillessen to this World Cup, they thought he was
mentally fragile but he looks cool on the ball tonight. He looks very
cool. One of his idols is Van der Sar. Isn't he the marketing manager?
With Ajax? Yes. Similar styles. He says he has modelled himself
mentally on Van der Sar. You are not putting him above Manuel Neuer,
though? No. The German goalkeeper has won many fans, as if he did
though? No. The German goalkeeper have enough. That is that ball
forward for Holland. It came off Demichelis, the corner is the
correct call. Vlaar has made a decent run but it
is over him. Lovely ball again and Romero had to take it away from
DeVry. This is a good spell for the Dutch. De Vrij is still up there.
Van Persie was offside. The Dutch supporters get to their feet but
realised it would not have mattered. As the referee blew his whistle, the
Dutch contingent went up. That is why. It doesn't look right, punching
it, but the first punch was excellent. You do is to never in
control, are you? -- you are just never in control. The mero is an
experienced Hull keeper but perhaps a little rusty after only playing
three times in the French top division for Monaco -- Romero is an
experienced goalkeeper. But it has not kept him his World Cup place and
he has kept a clean sheet in their last two games. Not tested
extensively by Switzerland or Belgium, certainly not by Belgium.
That would have been a free kick but advantage Argentina. Just as well
for Mascherano because he gave it away in the first place. Messi was
sublime against Belgium at the weekend but has not had a chance to
make his mark on this game yet. Lavezzi gets lucky with the bounce
back, he was trying to find Perez. Messi is offside. If Argentina are
going to get in any area of the pitch at the moment, it is down
there right. My glasses just steamed up a little
bit then. Nigel de Jong. He is looking for Van Persie.
This second World Cup semifinal is going through a bit of a scrappy
stage. A stage where nobody is really in charge of the game. While
it is intriguing, nothing really great has happened so far, we are
all waiting for this game to take off. We have not seen Arjen Robben
at all. No, and you could argue Van Persie similar, Messi to a certain
degree. That was well done by Lavezzi in the
first instance. The flag is up here. That was just a little bit careless
and it is a free kick for the Dutch. It is when you can see across the
line. Higuain was the culprit. He was in a great position, as in being
able to see, but was just in the wrong position.
We can hear "Holland" ringing around the arena.
Higuain is in the centre and Ron Vlaar got across to him at just the
right time. Great tackle by Ron Vlaar. Kept in play. And then
Sneijder was dumped to the floor unceremoniously. It was Martin
Demichelis who kicked right at him. It has to be a booking, surely. It
isn't, no sign of it, just a word from the Turkish referee. This was
the interception from Ron Vlaar, he is great at that. The thought was,
after what happened to Neymar in particular, that referees would lose
their lenient take as has been the case for most of the competition,
for the rest of it, but no great change in style. That has to be a
yellow. I would love to see the heat map of
how many touches Biglia in midfield for Argentina has actually had. Not
a lot of heat anywhere in this stadium tonight.
Messi blocked by Martins Indi and the referee already had his whistle
to his lips. A free kick to Argentina and Martins Indi might be
the first recipient of a yellow card. He might be. He was checking
in his pocket to see if he still had it. He might not be. Again, I think
it is just a word of calm. He did set the tone with the Demichelis
incident a moment ago. Therein lies the problem. It is a yellow, he has
blocked him off. Sneijder was caught at the start of the Argentinian move
when he basically got clattered. Listen, we want them to keep players
on the pitch, absolutely all day long but a booking is a booking. The
other thing, whether it is in the second second or the 95th minute, it
is still a yellow. Much criticism of the Spanish referee who basically
let the situation billed until Neymar got his back broken. That was
ridiculous. -- let the situation build-up. The same situation from
the insurance agent from Istanbul who is in charge of this one. Messi
skips away from Robben. Just asked a little bit too much of Perez and
Couchman was there to meet him. I am not sure that Perez was ready for
it. -- Dirk Kuyt was there to meet him. Sneijder is still off the
field, the Dutch are down to ten men to Pirelli. -- temporarily. One shot
on target? The free kick from Messi? That was well held by Cillessen. I
am calling it a hold now, not a save.
Ron Vlaar just got it away from Messi but the young was closed down
by Mascherano and that has sparked a chance to attack for Argentina.
40 pretty low-key minutes played so far. The Dutch have done most of
their good work in the second halves of the games so far in this World
Cup. 10/12 goals scored have come after the break. We have barely had
a chance worthy of the name in this first half. Argentina just shading
it as far as attacking intent goes. Higuain keeps his feet under
pressure from Ron Vlaar who at least he has dragged out of defence. That
is the good thing if you play three, the other two just inch towards the
centre. And Dirk Kuyt and Daley Blind immediately retreat. Yes. De
Jong stuck with Messi. Perez lost the chance. It looks like a trip or
a push from Messi on Sneijder and Sneijder is getting a little wound
up. He has been whacked three times the last time he has touched the
ball, that is why. It was a poor touch from Perez. He took a knock
himself from De Vrij for his trouble. Zabaleta has been penalised
and now a Netherlands free kick. We need something to happen, in all
honesty. Blind wanted to take that quickly down the left but Schneider
did not see it, he ignored it. -- Sneijder. I seem to remember the
general with the trophy from four years ago. He did not get to take it
home then. Wijnaldum has to go back to Martins
Indi. He has Higuain running at him and now at Cillessen who has pulled
into a safe, wide position. Dirk Kuyt, got a bit lucky and bundled
through Perez. That free kick probably summed up the first half.
Wijnaldum is pestered by Mascherano, one of the better players on show.
It has been that sort of game, where those who have destroyed and snuff
out have been on top. Demichelis is an example. Biglia went in and won
it, got it a fraction of a second in front of Sneijder. Ron Vlaar did
well, not just to get there in the first instance but keep it in and
now it is Messi, through the gap. Stopped and they yellow card is out
now for Martins Indi. Sneijder is into him as well about the yonks.
Both of them will have a go. He got away with one. -- about Nigel de
Jong. You cannot say it is justice because he should have been booked
for the first one. He's certainly stopped Messi there,
put his arm across to prevent him getting up to top speed. That man
Messi will now try to tease the right ball into the Dutch penalty
area. The whistle has gone. Yes.
Presumably for the challenge on the goalkeeper. It is that arm from
Rojo. First half stoppage time, there will be two minutes on. It
would be nice if we got two chances in those minutes.
Lots of room for Blind, Lavezzi comes across to meet him. Alejandro
Sabella made that change very quickly, Lavezzi went from
left-to-right, Perez came to the near side as we watched it and they
have not switched back. Know, and they will stay there until
half-time. De Jong looks all right, he, after tearing his groin. Pulling
it a touch might be a better reassessment.
Higuain is having to work up there. Slightly more mobile number nine
than the man we have seen in yellow throughout this tournament. Yes. We
should leave him alone now, really. He had a bad day yesterday. Messi
should leave him alone now, really. fires a wonderful ball to Rojo,
first time... Next time. Martins Indi is not going to be beaten by
Lavezzi that easily. Throwing. Orange one. Rojo should have done
better. There is no time for the throw, that will do it for the first
in S?o Paulo and it has been a case of a lot of good players out there
not being able to show their full range of talents because our lot of
other players out there are snuffing them out successfully. No real
chances, not a great deal of excitement yet, no nearer to knowing
who will play Germany on Sunday. 0-0.
After what seemed like a delay, the Argentinian team have taken the
field for the second half. The Dutch have been there for some time having
made a half-time change. Daryl Janmaat has come on wearing seven
and taken the place of Bruno Martins Indi. The team in Orange, the
Netherlands get as started and Mark Lawrenson can tell us what that
means. Daley Blind will play as the third centre-back on the left,
Janmaat will be on the right, Dirk out on the left and the rest remains
the same. -- Dirk Kuyt. Just a slight tinkering from Louis Van Gaal
in personnel rather than shape. Perhaps worried about the booking
form teams in the. Especially as he was on a booking plus, if you like.
Janmaat has his first touch and gives it away. That is cynical. That
should be a booking. That was absolutely cynical from Stefan de
Vrij, and took the man out completely and it has to be a yellow
card but it is not going to believe. You cannot just warn him
for that, he was away. That is ridiculous, E. I hope he is not
thinking it was the first tackle of the second half. -- that is
ridiculous, referee. That was the most premeditated foul we have seen
in the game yet. Louis Van Gaal will agree with the referee all day of
course. Sneijder looking for Robben, we have
all been looking for Robben in the games so far. The throwing goes to
his team, not his team. -- the throw in.
That is a Miss Jude punt. It is because he has got his boot off --
miscued punt. Ezequiel Garay buying himself some time. The boot is on
the other foot now! The centre-back debts himself re-shod and Janmaat
will take the throw in. This would be a peculiar way to bring about a
goal if it happens. He will not find Van Persie with that.
A neat little touch and one from Robben as well. Dirk
Kuyt will come onto this. Robben was pulled back and it will
be a free kick. Demichelis is holding his nose but it was a foul
by the Manchester City man on the Bayern Munich flyer. And he might
get booked here, would you believe? He is. Yellow for Demichelis,
another player who got away with one in the first half. Former Bayern
Munich team-mates for a season and a half. Demichelis actually quite
vocal in the Argentinian before the match saying that Robben is not a
fighter but the great player and he would have a go at him early. It has
taken him a while. I think as well, saying to the referee, what about
the foul at the start of the second half? He booked Demichelis, that is
fine, but consistency is the key. Schneider or Robben -- Sneijder. He
just sensed there was a chance to catch out Romero had not his best
effort. No. The referee put the paints down and the two players just
moved to the side. That is the technical expression, laying the
paint down. We might be seeing that in a few European leagues next
season, it seems to have gone an well. The Premier League? I thought
I read that somewhere. May be. That is a great ball but the flag is
up against Messi, Cillessen was out to meet him but it will not count,
don't worry, it is wide anyway. The flag went up very sharply. Yes. But,
but, Holland went two against two. Mascherano saw it straight away with
a wonderful ball through. Just at the moment as well, Argentina have
got Higuain on the right, Lavezzi on the left and Messi is playing
through the middle at the moment so they have also changed. Maybe he
fancies a run at Ron Vlaar. He would with those little scampering legs
around you. Time for the Argentinian supporters to raise it a little.
They do say that playing against a back three that you either play one
up or three up, never two. Wijnaldum lost it, Messi will have a run at
Ron Vlaar, he got some help. That is De Vrij down to Janmaat.
De Vrij again just shouldered Lavezzi out of his way.
Yes, Argentina have definitely gone three up front.
Dirk Kuyt gets it away before Zabaleta appeared to bother him and
returned by Daley Blind. He is playing as one of three central
defenders now, a very versatile player, the son of assistant coach
Danny. I think you might have called him Danny earlier! Sorry! I have
done, three or four times in the tournament!
Nothing to choose between the teams. We knew it would not be anywhere
near as open as the first semifinal. It could not possibly be. Then
again, I don't think any game you will see for the next four years
will be. But this is really cagey. Sneijder has taken some stick. He
was followed by Biglia that time. A free kick against Argentina. A howl
of anguish from Higuain. It is a foul, isn't it? Maybe a chance for
Robben through the middle but cannot go any further. There is your man,
Biglia getting back. Can you see Van Persie on the right? It is the old
hands on hips. He did not look, did he? He only had eyes for Demichelis
and he did not see Van Persie or Biglia coming in from the side to
win it. Zabaleta will not be able to keep that in. Just a little more
animated now, Alex keep that in. Just a little more
used to know him. Did you play against him? I think he probably
did, I don't know if it was Sheffield United or Leeds but I
would have thought so. He was all left foot, if I remember.
He had two nicknames, the magician or the sloths. You could take your
pick, depending on what kind of day he was having. He was fiery as
well, I think. Find me an Argentine player who isn't. Messi called Ron
Vlaar off-balance but a good recovery from the Aston Villa man.
-- court Ron Vlaar. We are getting a bit of pace to the game, now. We
are, the telescopic legs coming out from Ron Vlaar.
You just get the feeling that the chances. To come. Demichelis. On
Sneijder. -- that the chances will start to come.
You would play three at the back all day if you are Aston Villa, wouldn't
you? With the competition Ron Vlaar has had. I am sure Roy Keane will be
watching with interest. Although they have signed Senderos. A World
Cup player. Speaks five averages. Another look at the wonderful tackle
from Ron Vlaar. Again, it is one he had to get right. We have reached
the point of no return a bit in this game.
had to get right. We have reached the point of no return a bit in The
players are suddenly thinking, " come on, let's have a go". One goal
might take you to the Maracana and the World Cup final. But to get a
goal, you have to gamble. And the Netherlands have to get Arjen Robben
into the game more. All he has to get himself into the game. Which is
it? A bit of both, I think. Higuain was a bit quicker than
Stefan de Vrij. With Holland, it might be a case of
getting Sneijder on the ball more, than robbing an Van Persie. You have
mentioned the key front three but none of them have really seen as
much of the ball as they would like. And neither has Messi.
Mascherano has dropped off to the left.
I think they are waiting for the one moment of magic. There are three or
four players on the field, some more prominent than others, likely to
provide it. The flag stays down as Lavezzi gets
onto the ball. Ron Vlaar is beaten. But we header goes away from goal,
from Higuain. Or was it good defending from Daryl Janmaat to win
it? It was the latter, most definitely, Janmaat did great.
Acer in for the Dutch. Someone just cluttered Robben as well. Marcos
Rojo, sliding through. Seeing red. Messi thought that should have been
his throw. Not his game, so far, so far. No, well, the four big stars
you have mentioned, none of them... Ron Vlaar with a good ball for
Sneijder but not such a good ball from him to Van Persie. Could he
have had an extra touch and maybe taken a shot? Sneijder wins it back.
Enzo Perez cannot do any more than tackle.
Sneijder has ghosted forward as an extra striker, here. Wijnaldum is on
the run. Dirk Kuyt spotted him but could not find him. Romero, all over
it. That is the other thing, when you look at it, neither team from
wide areas has put particularly good service into the front players,
neither team. The highlights have been the singing and the nonstop
encouragement of the Argentina supporters, really, and they are
going again. They have been taunted by some of their Brazilian
counterparts here, watching. They have been singing, " five times
champions". But they will not be this year.
The chance is still there, of course, for Argentina to close the
gap, win a third World Cup. Marcos Rojo was careless, there.
Janmaat just let it run too far in front of him. He was late in. It was
a lunge. Lucas Biglia, in the wars. It is one of those, you know it is
coming, but once you are committed, you cannot get out of the way. A bit
of his knee and a bit of his boot and quite a lot of starred. Nigel de
Jong has lasted past the hour, which is longer than we thought he would
last. It was really doubtful. In fact, we thought he was out for the
tournament with a groin problem but now he goes off, to be replaced by
22-year-old Jordy Clasie of Feyenoord, baying for his country
for only the ninth time, his first appearance at this or any World Cup.
-- playing for his country. The squad Louis Van Gaal picked before
setting off for Brazil showed that he is not bothered. Never mind your
age. If you are good enough, you are old enough. And it is also his way
or the highway. He is very much that kind of manager. The Dutch have made
a midfield change, but Argentina might have two after this. They do
have the right man in Fernando Gago, should Biglia have to go off. It
would be like for like. Look at his face. He did something similar.
It looks like they are trying to patch him up.
Argentina are preparing to make a change of they have do. There is
Gago, number five. -- if they have do. He has played in every game and
started three of them. You may have to wait a bit longer for his chance.
It caught his arm as well, look. Alejandro Sabella making his point
keenly. The rain has started to fall a lot more heavily in S?o Paulo now.
It may just speed the pitch up a little bit, and therefore the game,
we hope. Those backpasses might take an a bit
of a high level of risk, now, with a slick surface. The rain is really
coming down. It is heavy and steady. And if you look, tactically, it is
always intriguing, but both teams have never really been pulled out of
position at any stage. Daley Blind, getting it away before
Higuain's challenge came in. Dirk Kuyt versus Zabaleta. Room for
Jordy Clasie. Not exactly flowing, but it is still moving for the
Dutch. Robben did well to control it. It was a poor ball from
Wijnaldum. Clasie, spraying it about a bit, having only just joined
Wijnaldum. Clasie, spraying it about action. Not a bad cross from Dirk
Kuyt Boswell defended. -- but well defended.
Getting towards the three quarters mark of the game and it is still
goalless. You could argue as well that certainly, Holland have the
more attacking midfielders on the pitch. Ron Vlaar just got there and
got something on the ball. Robben, looking a bit more busy and
more interested and more involved. They are moving it around quicker,
the Netherlands. Oh, dear me, Daley Blind has its head in his hands.
the Netherlands. Oh, dear me, Daley should have gone right foot, but he
went outside left. His dad has his arms folded. Denying all knowledge
of him. I think, just the fact that the Dutch have sent Clasie on, it is
like they are trying to say, " come on, let's get hold of the ball and
start to play". Clasie was all over Lionel Messi. Of course, he has to
do that job as well, taking over from Nigel de Jong. A bit too eager,
that time. He did not quite get that right, and
well won by Janmaat. Mascherano, back to stop Robben. Janmaat is
still down in his own half of the field. The Dutch are getting on with
it. Dirk Kuyt has swung it in and Wijnaldum is blocked off. It is a
corner, if it goes. It will now be a Netherlands throw and finally,
Janmaat can receive treatment. He won the header and just got caught,
I think, here. Ouch! That must have been his cheekbone. Dear, oh dear.
It is always when you least it, you get it. It was right on the
cheekbone, as he went in with Marcos Rojo. He is sitting up, Daryl
Janmaat. He has done well to coming on at half-time, done really well
defensively. There are, almost attacking, trying to spark an
attacking move for the Netherlands. -- there, almost attacking.
Interesting, that was one of those occasions that makes a mockery of
teams that have not got possession and Dara man down, asking the
opposition to put it out. They were not going to do it themselves, not
while they were moving forward. Janmaat might well being the Premier
League next season. He has been linked heavily with Newcastle and
Manchester United, as I supposed asked about everyone in the Dutch
team has been, given the new manager. -- as I suppose just about
everyone. Janmaat has come, feel. -- has come
back on the field. His cheeks have survived.
Jordy Clasie has come on with a point to prove. No World Cup action
at all before his introduction here, for Nigel de Jong. No fear as well,
I would suggest. Enzo Perez was chased all the way by
Sneijder. Room on the far side for Marcos Rojo. He now has it under
control and attacks Janmaat and Stefan de Vrij. Helped by Lavezzi. A
bit of room for Lavezzi. His shot goes straight into the solid body of
Ron Vlaar. Stefan de Vrij comes across to challenge. Better from
Argentina, they little bit of urgency. We have hardly seen them
attack in the second half. Sneijder running into trouble, in the
un-movable former Zabaleta. Messi. -- an movable form of Zabaleta.
Something is going to happen soon. It may be a mistake that leads to a
goal, but we need something, as neutrals.
Messi, bouncing back to his feet to keep Argentina in possession. Enzo
Perez, nudging it forward to Higuain. Ron Vlaar is all over him
and into him. The ball is out. I think he just dived on the bull with
his head at the end, it seemed. See what he does, here. Get in there,
Ron. Brilliant. You are not getting past.
It will be a free kick, perhaps not surprisingly, rather than a throw.
18 minutes of the 90 remaining. Argentina have not shown much as an
attacking force at all since half-time. Rojo is up for the Messi
free kick. The movement is more intense, now, in the middle. It is
over the goalkeeper and everyone. intense, now, in the middle. It is
is human! Not like him. You can't overstate the pressure
that is on Lionel Messi. He overtakes Diego Maradona's number of
caps in this game and is on 92 now. All the time, he will be aware of
the reports that he cannot be considered a world great until he
does what Maradona and Pele and company did before him. He did it to
some extent. With a not very good team, by the way, as well. Dirk Kuyt
apologising to the world. Louis van Gaal is not having it.
Conditions to match the game, pretty grim. The aero slipping as he
cleared. -- Romero slipping. Robben is onto it, brilliantly taken.
Janmaat outside him. Van Persie is in the box but offside anyway. And
he was the wrong side of the goal. It would have been a wonderful
finish, from there. But well played by Robin, great first touch, and
great play by Janmaat as well. Robin van Persie has not had a sniff. No,
no. We could say the same about Messi, couldn't we?
Ron Vlaar has had an excellent game at the heart of the Dutch defence.
He might be the game's best player at the moment. I kind of thing that
tells you about the game. Yes. Kept in play by Enzo Perez. Sneijder is
after it, lovely, teasing ball! It is into the side netting. What a
ball from Enzo Perez. But it could not find the finish from Higuain.
Brilliant. Supporters at the other end of the ground thought it was in,
seeing the net billowing from the foreign. Did the flight go up
anyway? Play has gone on, as it should, with Jordy Clasie, looking
for Van Persie. Demichelis away. It is looking a lot more open, now.
Enzo Perez with one of the parties of the match. -- passes of the
match. Robben shimmying past Zabaleta. Look
how deep Dirk Kuyt is. Zabaleta shuts the door on Daley
Blind. Good work again from Ron Vlaar, on
his way, at the moment to maybe being Man of the Match in the World
Cup semifinal. Years going to job forward and stay up there. Free kick
to Holland for the foul on Daley Blind. I would have thought
Argentina are thinking about making a change. They must be. Surely they
need to try and affect the game? We keep on hearing Sergio Aguero is
fit. Sneijder with the free kick. Nobody is that deep all that tall.
Argentina goalkick. Very similar to Messi's wasted free kick a few
moments ago. He has only got one change left, Louis Van Gaal. Will he
save it for the penalties? Indeed. That was Higuain's opportunity. He
immediately looked at the referee's assistant.
12 and a half minutes of regulation time to go. The big winners at the
moment are Germany. The big winners yesterday and this evening, they
will be sitting back, relaxing with a gluhwein or two, and an extra
day's rest because they will want this to go all the way if it can.
Mind you, they had an extra half rest. What do you mean, half? It was
like an under nines game in the first half. One team kept chasing,
and the other one gets scoring. Very, very different semifinals.
Zabaleta. Enzo Perez is having a much better
second half. Yes. The thing about Argentina is, look out the
Mascherano goes for the ball. He almost plays at centre-back at
times. Biglia is in front of him and he is basically an up and down
midfield player, who will just close people down. He is not exactly a
passer. They are lacking in that department, aren't they? You are not
telling me that one of the centre-backs cannot do what
Mascherano is doing. He is doing it pretty well. There is no argument
about that, but you are a player like in the forward areas. Messi
running straight into Janmaat. It runs away from Robben.
Looking down at the bench, to see if there is any sign of a change, there
is movement for Argentina. It looks as though Rodrigo Palacio is going
to come on. If they are going to put a forward on, I would have thought
it would have been a wearer. He is starting to jog a little bit down
there as well. It might be both of them. There we go, talk about
affecting the game, changing the game. This is a signal. Two forwards
about to take the field for Argentina.
Misjudgement by Mascherano but tidied up by Demichelis.
Daley Blind, looking for Wijnaldum again. Ezequiel Garay got the call
from Rojo to leave it. They worked it out between them. Good play by
Rojo because he is facing the balls he does not need to make a decision.
Here we go. Argentina are taking off Enzo Perez, and the first player on
will be Inter Milan's Rodrigo Palacio. 19 goals last season. He a
live wire as well. He is a forward, isn't he? Oh, yes, plays as the lone
striker for Inter Milan, more often than not. Is he the boy with the
right's tale, for want of a better description? I am not sure that is a
hairdresser's term. It is off centre as well, jaunty. And the other
change will see the return of Sergio Aguero, who has had a groin problem.
Of course, he has been beset by injuries since the turn of the year
for Majesty city. injuries since the turn of the year
board is like a borrowed so, now. -- Manchester City. And the
substitute's board is like a bar of soap. Gonzalo Higuain is going off,
rather forlornly. As you would in a World Cup semifinal. Yes, he scored
a good goal in the last round to get them through but he has probably
been average at best, Higuain. On comes a player who rarely years but
has never scored at the World Cup. Three games, here, and three in
South Africa, two from the bench and he has gone five games without an
international goal, Aguero. So, it will be Rodrigo Palacio down
the right, and it looks at the moment as though Aguero is going to
go through the middle. Yes. Lavezzi on the left and Messi to tuck in
behind and play where he wants. Basically an extra forward on,
great. Sabella has played his cards with
seven minutes to go. Messi has got it out to Rojo and he
has gone from distance. Cillessen runs into a wearer. I think Aguero
tried to flick it out. The Dutch players are saying it should be a
booking. He knows where he is, very deliberate. Not a bad shot from Rojo
considering it is getting slippery now and quite wet. He did not catch
it cleanly. Patty cake patter cake. We have seen glimpses in the last 20
minutes or so of Robben and still only glimpses of Messi. Biglia was
pounced upon by Dirk Kuyt. That is a daft prowl. -- daft free kick.
Mascherano, formerly of the club that will be moving into this
ground, Corinthians, briefly, for moving to West Ham and then
Liverpool. Great interception it yet again for the umpteenth time from
Ron Vlaar. Ron Vlaar really does some up the
improvement of this Netherlands national side since the European
Championship two years ago. They were knocked out at the group stage
and were quite miserable. Brilliant work by De Vrij. Wijnaldum is rather
needlessly fouled by Rojo. Since the European Championship, the Dutch
have lost two out of 26 games played and those were friendlies. That was
a good tackle. I think he was waiting to see the reaction of
Robben. This might tell us. He gets the ball. Look at Robben. There was
a point at first from Demichelis and then a hand slap before the
team-mates. -- from the former team-mates. Job done by Rojo and
that is drilled well wide by Jordy Clasie. It was a poor touch from
Lavezzi. I think we are going into extra time, it looks that way
barring something that has not been in keeping with the game, something
magnificent. You mean football? Has it been that bad? It has not been
great. Higuain will not make the difference as he did in the last
round against Belgium for Argentina. That has gone straight to Messi and
he somehow comes away with it and that is Aguero. It is some wonderful
defending. Guess who? Big Ron! Big Ron again.
Messi just wriggled away from Dirk Kuyt. Mascherano with a driving
run. He cannot get it through to Sergio Aguero. Guess why? Ron Vlaar
is in the way of everything! Concrete Ron!
Biglia was pointing the way. Out it goes for a Dutch throw. Robben
cannot get through it tonight. So far.
They are so narrow down the right at the moment, Argentina. Palacio is
pushed in all the time. Just for a moment when Mascherano ran at the
heart of the Netherlands defence, it looked like a shot was on. He does
not score very often as we know. That is twice someone has big Aguero
to the ball, Sabella is going nuts. He is saying, just come to the
ball, he is strong as well but he was
Even when we get into injury time, we will have half an hour to go
unless there is an injury time goal so we will not see Tim Krul warming
up yet. Good ball from Dirk Kuyt, Robben, he
is in! Brilliance defending! Behind it goes for a corner. Was it
Mascherano? It was, he read the danger. Absolutely top-class. That
was the chance to win it. Yes, it is Mascherano. Great block. Look at his
eyes widened, he realised, that was the moment he realised, we are going
out, we are not making the final but for that last bit of lunging, and he
has gone a bit far, something has stretched. They knew it was a chance
will stop look at Danny Blind. He is all right, he is a warrior. He has
just kept his team on course for the Maracana, or in with a shout of it.
Robben had Romero to beat Gambian macro but he was well set.
Romero started to come for that but went back. Sneijder has a nice
angle. He can punch, can't he? It is the Dutch who are pressing in the
last seconds in S?o Paulo. Robben lets it run. The cross from
Janmaat and it is cleared by Garay. The Netherlands will keep going
until the final whistle-blowers, keep going at that Argentinian
penalty area. -- until the final whistle blows. Only Van Persie in
the box. Janmaat for the return but he went too soon and the flag is up
and it will be a free kick and we are into the last few seconds. Yes,
again, he could have looked across the line because nobody went with
him. Just. He is off. Just. Off. Off but just! A free kick for Sergio
Romero to take but he will not take it because that will do it for the
90 minutes. We have extra time in Sao Paulo in the second World Cup
semifinal. No eight goals here but we have got drama till the last and
we have 30 minutes extra to come first of all. Netherlands 0-0
Argentina. The two captains, two of the greats
of the game, Robin van Persie and Lionel Messi, neither of whom have
been able to make any sort of mark on this World Cup semifinal at all
but there is time yet. We have just been talking about the dilemma that
Louis Van Gaal has, with 30 minutes to go, with cramp and fatigue taking
its toll yet he made that subsidiaries and, Krul for Cillessen
just ahead of penalties against Costa Rica. Does he have a problem
now? Yes, and the problem will be different conditions completely
tonight, really wet, sapping in terms of energy. If one or two of
his players go down with cramp in the next 29 minutes... He has
stepped out his stall, the wings that Krul is the better at
penalties. -- he has set his stall out, he thinks that Krul is the
better at penalties. I really do hope it is not a mistake by Ron
Vlaar that settles this game because he does not deserve it. Yes. Van
Gaal said to him as well after normal time, keep going, he has been
fantastic. He was ruled as a doubt for the game with a knee problem but
defending has been no problem to him at all.
Dirk Kuyt does well to find Daley Blind who had taken up a useful
position on the left-hand touchline. De Vrij and Daley Blind have
defended very well. Yes, they have been very compact, as have
Argentina. Demichelis got enough on that but he needs the help of the
other letter now. Van Persie has lent into him, a Manchester derby
duel between the three of them. The decision goes to the light Blues.
Yes, and rightly so. Klaas-Jan Huntelaar has been
stretching and it looks like he is getting ready. It looks as though
the Dutch will be take sting -- putting on a penalty taker rather
than a saver. And the other thing is that Argentina will have watched
what Tim Krul did the other night and he went the same way for every
penalty. Argentina have watched him trying to save the penalties. They
don't know where Cillessen is going and we don't know which way the game
is going. We might not get there yet. We are kind of hoping we do! I
am wishing, not hoping! Clasie almost lost it to Aguero.
Cillessen only just cleared Sergio Aguero with that. Messi loses it to
Wesley Sneijder. FIFA Aguero with that. Messi loses it to
to go to encourage attacking play in extra time rather than the nervy
play we saw when it was next goal wins. Is this going to conform? It
looks like it at the moment. Janmaat tried to squeeze it through
to Robin van Persie. There is nobody there.
It is his 102nd cap tonight, it puts him ahead of Phillip Cocu, into the
top six in Dutch football history. And he has played in 17 different
positions are those caps! He was even in goal in training sessions
last week. If I remember rightly, didn't he
once go in goal for Liverpool? I don't know. I might have dreamt it!
Blind made the attentions of Palacio seem as if they did not bother him
one bit. The play is going the same way as it did for much of the
closing stages of the game with the Netherlands attacking. Dealt with by
Demichelis. I was going to say, he looks better without the ponytail,
and not just aesthetically. I said it earlier, he looked different,
better, quicker. Smarter. Van Persie off, Huntelaar on. That has answered
your question. A few whistles, shakes of the head and
your question. A few whistles, looking Dutch supporters at that
change. Van Persie has been under the weather and has had a stomach
problem. Huntelaar is immediately involved. Robben has got through.
And he nearly found Huntelaar but Mascherano and Zabaleta ganged up on
him. Mascherano yet again made the block. Now we know the answer if it
goes to penalties, Jasper Cillessen will be in goal for the
Netherlands. No heroics from Tim Krul this time. Louis Van Gaal will
be wanting his team to win it before it gets to that stage. Just at the
moment it is the team in orange looking the most likely. Yes, it is,
Argentina have hardly got out of their own half in this first period
of extra time. Janmaat is ambling to the ball.
That was too strong for Wijnaldum. The number of times that right
footed players have crossed from the left for Holland and they have
overhit it, it is too numerous. Of course, Argentina have one
subsidiary left available. They have played there to attacking cards,
Palacio and Aguero. Maybe again for Maxi Rodriguez. -- may be a game.
Ricky Alvarez is another option, that is if Sabella wants to go the
attacking route. Or a penalty taker. They have got a few of those on the
field already. Palacio is stopped by Blind.
Really nicely done by Dirk Kuyt. Huntelaar on the left, Sneijder with
Robben and Janmaat to the right. Robben goes past Biglia and goes for
gold. It was on target, Romero had to be switched on and ready. -- goes
for goal. Did that double their shops tally? It was just as well
that Garay left it, he tried to get in the way but it might have taken
it past Romero. Biglia tries to curl one down the
line and Blind has been beaten by Palacio but back at him now and Ron
Vlaar stops the ball across. Here is the final Argentinian change
and they are going to put Maxi Rodriguez into the game. Lavezzi is
going off, again, for a player of his abilities, not influencing the
game to the level he should be doing. Not at all, not at all. I
would not challenge his work rate but you are supposed to work hard in
professional football. This is somebody whose reputation cannot be
challenged, playing in his third World Cup, scored three goals in
2006 in Germany. The former Liverpool man left Anfield a couple
of years ago and has been back at his spiritual home, Newell 's old
boys in Argentina since. Zabaleta has gone for the old guard, the
tried and trusted. And you would expect Maxi Rodriguez to take a
penalty, wouldn't you? Still another 20 minutes before we get there but
no sign of the deadlock being broken just yet. That ball very nearly came
through to Palacio. Very nearly is not good enough. Sneijder was all at
sea. He is having a go at Huntelaar about the past to him but he was
under unbelievable pressure. -- the pass.
If anything, Mascherano is dropping even deeper now. He does of course
play centre-back for Barcelona these days. Rojo chips it up. Returned in
his direction but Janmaat has gone with him. It has to be poked out by
Garay with Huntelaar there. Lovely return and Wijnaldum has gone to
Robben again. Huntelaar is in the box.
Dirk Kuyt to have another look. He gets it wrong, played it straight
against Biglia and could we have an Argentinian break led by Messi?
Janmaat is back. He has been terrific. He has, full of energy
Janmaat is back. He has been vim and vigour. The closer option
was Robben. He skips away from Zabaleta. That is a foul. I thought
it was as well. Robben was definitely impeded by Zabaleta.
Messi just escapes the leg of Blind. Suddenly the game is stretched, I
don't think it has been at any point today. And it is not any more.
The name of Lionel Messi starts to be sung by Argentinian supporters,
desperate for their icon, their captain, their super start to take
them through to the Maracana on Sunday. He has got to beat Ron Vlaar
to do that. -- their superstar. A lot more urgency about the Dutch
play. Robben does not move, he will not get a free kick or a penalty or
whatever he wants from that. It was a poor pass again from Dirk Kuyt, he
has wasted the ball so often down that left.
Mascherano is chased by Huntelaar and fouled by Huntelaar, free kick
Argentina, yellow card for Klaas-Jan Huntelaar. You are not going to
change the referee's mind. A good job for him that they are wiped
after the quarterfinals. Surely the two centre-backs are going up, I
thought for a moment they were going to stay back but they are going up
now. Garay and Demichelis get up into that penalty area. There will
be one minute added on and we are into it now until the end of the
first half of extra time. Something for Cillessen to do here, maybe.
Lionel Messi free kick. Cillessen watches it onto the end of his
gloves. He actually did well, for a split second I did not think he was
going to get there. Oh! He came right over the top of Sergio Aguero.
He has a look of Stuart Broad. Yes. Palacio gets away from Blind and it
was close to Aguero but not quite close enough and it is turned behind
by Janmaat and Argentina will be in a hurry to take this corner. It was
a great ball in as well, Aguero just cannot get there. Did De Vrij get
the call to lead it? It is headed clear by Wijnaldum and that will do
it for the first period of extra time. Flurries of excitement, mainly
the Netherlands doing the attacking side of it but still neither side is
able to find a way through. 15 minutes to go and if we do not see a
goal, the World Cup finalists to join Germany in Rio will be decided
by a penalty shoot out. Are we set for another semifinal to
be decided by spot kicks? Those on the field will have to do it for the
teams. All three subs to juice and have been used by both coaches. --
substitutions. Cillessen made it look simple enough but his heart
must have been beating a bit more quickly when he saw Aguero coming.
That is twice he has done that. That the letter stays down and you know
there is a problem then. Complete accident, they seemed to both
arrived at the same time for the ball. Dirk Kuyt is not even looking
at Zabaleta, he is looking at the ball. It is another one on the jaw.
Yes. It is wonderful when it works. Oh yes. Real competence there and
you called it early on, there is definitely a touch of Edwin van der
Sar about him. goalkeepers again, with Tim Krul on
the bench and Michel Vorm of Swans A. Kenneth Vermeer was seemingly
first choice at the beginning of last season for club and country but
Cillessen overtook him. Real concern for Zabaleta. They have made the
changes, haven't they? It is a just in case compensation, if he does not
make it. -- conversation. Just checking everything. It is his
teeth, isn't it? Oh, straight into the shoulder. And don't forget how
much that is slowed down. He sees everything, Alex Sabella, kicks
everything, hits every ball, feels every blow. I think he is going to
be fine. By that I mean he will be able to carry on. Of all the players
on the field, he would be the one you would back. Him and Mascherano.
You don't get soft South American players, do you? Not in blue and
white, for Uruguay and Argentina, that is the shore. -- for sure. It
is a long delay, for treatment to Pablo Zabaleta's jawline. Mascherano
is there. I think he could end up playing right back, couldn't he? It
is quite an attacking line-up that they have on the field, now.
Zabaleta will continue. It looks as though he knows exactly what day it
is and what is at stake. Yes, it is Friday, February eight. A clean
shirt and a tissue will sort him out and on we go with Netherlands in
possession. Here goes Palacio. He worked really
hard to get that through to Aguero, whose touch was not what was
required. Aguero has been very poor, for him, since he has been on.
He looks completely out of sorts. Zabaleta is back on the field.
Sneijder finds the on movable Ron Vlaar. -- on movable.
It is almost like we are starting the second period of extra time
again the second period of extra time
Zabaleta. Wijnaldum wants it but Robben gets it instead.
Zabaleta. Wijnaldum wants it but to be quick and was caught by
Aguero. He has not been quick ever since he came on. Yes, he has been
slow off the mark. Messi cannot quite find Palacio but
Daley Blind is winding one up. That was more in hope than anything else.
A little bit. It will Stefan de Vrij, anyway. I am glad I did not
get too excited! And was it Danny Blind, or Daley Blind? It was Stefan
de Vrij. It happens. I am really glad it did not go in!
Still goalless after five and a half minutes of the second period of
extra time. There will be a good couple of minutes added to the end
after Zabaleta's crunching challenge from Dirk Kuyt. It was an accidental
Huntelaar was unlucky. He just looked as though he was going to set
Robben free. He is trying to pinch the ball for the throw, look. He
does smile, at times. He is all smiles, Arjen Robben, playing in a
very relaxed fashion. He falls over in a very relaxed fashion. Not in
the last couple of games. It seems to have worked, a bit of a backlash,
not the refereeing but a bit of a spotlight on it, and he seems to
have suddenly found the ability to stay upright.
No doubt at all that he will be in the queue, he went second in the
penalties, if we get there, against Costa Rica. Someone will have two
step first now Van Persie is no longer out there. -- have to step.
It might well be Huntelaar. There is a fear of losing, now,
isn't there? So close to the finish. They scrapped the Golden Goal rule,
but we have almost got one now. Ron Vlaar once again seeing of Sergio
Aguero. When you think of the likes of Aguero, Messi, Van Persie and
Robben, you would not have expected Ron Vlaar to take Man of the Match
honours in the World Cup semifinal. No, but he has been fantastic, plus
his leadership. Ron Vlaar blocking again and getting a throw.
Ezequiel Garay will certainly be in the queue for Argentina. He takes
free kicks and penalties when he is allowed the chance.
Mascherano slipped but still found Aguero. Maxi Rodr?guez was after
Daley Blind. It has bounced off the heel of
Palacio. Dirk Kuyt was about three yards
offside when he realised that the ball was sailing over his head. You
can see what he thought of it. It is difficult to know what Jasper
Cillessen is thinking. "Probably about time, too. It should have been
me last time". We know he does not lack confidence. Also, I think
goalkeepers should take penalties. Tim Krul might have, had we got
there. They are always kicking dead balls, aren't they? Palacio is in
Argentina! The flag stayed down and he made a mess of it. He wanted the
ball to come down and it was tamely into the hands of Cillessen. He
decided to head it without having a look at where Cillessen was. He
headed it straight at him rather than over him. The Dutch keeper made
that looked very routine as well. -- made that look. That just shows you,
we are not there yet. One slip-up and the World Cup semifinal could be
decided. Rojo had to stretch everything to keep it in play. He
did well. You have to say as well that both
teams, defensively, have looked absolutely rock-solid. They really
have, two different systems, as well.
Germany will certainly find it harder to score against either of
these teams in Sunday's final. If you can say certainly about any game
at this World Cup. Ron Vlaar goes shoulder to shoulder
but Messi is strong enough to keep his balance and Argentina on the
attack. He has beaten Ron Vlaar this time. There is the chance! And
Cillessen is in the way. Maxi Rodr?guez at the back. He did not
strike it with any quality whatsoever. Chances suddenly coming
Argentina's way. Robben. Mascherano will deal with him and just wait on
the contact from behind. I just wonder, with Rodriguez's chance, I
think Palacio is in the way as it comes back towards him. A little
bit, but even so. Ron Vlaar, pulling messy's -- Messi's shirt. He just
asked to strike through the ball but it was a complete misfit. -- has
destroyed. Was that the first time Ron Vlaar has been beaten? Yes, and
the header was not great either. Ron Vlaar wastes this. A bad 38 seconds.
He is having a shocker. It goes for an Argentina throw. Two and a half
minutes to go plus another couple of minutes, I should not wonder.
Benzema was similar and the weekend. -- at the weekend, a similar
situation. One shot to win it. There might be another one yet. A little
bit late, there, Janmaat. He called Rojo. -- court Rojo.
The top of his foot. No protection in his boots, is there? Actually,
has anyone got the big boots onto night? I don't think they have. I
have not see them but they might have longer studs in. It is still
raining. Not as heavily as it has been at times throughout this
evening. Huntelaar gets back onside. But
Robin is met by Mascherano. For one flaw in Orange, read Javier
Mascherano in blue and white. Absolutely, the two of them have
been brilliant. I think he is better there, Mascherano, I really do.
Huntelaar had to work to hold it up and keep it away from Ezequiel
Garay. Janmaat ran into Rojo. He is in the
wars again. He hurt himself this time. Huntelaar is on the move in
the penalty area, just getting in front of Ezequiel Garay for the
throw from Janmaat. He was able to turn, too.
Janmaat setting himself on the cross and it goes to Dirk Kuyt! Blocked by
Demichelis. Yes, I don't think he knew much about it. We are about to
move into one final minute. Robben keeps the ball and wanders through.
But Zabaleta lifts it out of harm 's way for Argentina. One minute, that
is what the board said, and that is all that is left of the second World
Cup semifinal. Dirk Kuyt is attacking for the Netherlands and he
nearly got it through to Wijnaldum. He was blocked by Rojo. There is a
bit of afters but it soon calms down and the goalkeeper will clear. Rojo
spotted the danger extremely quickly, coming in from his
left-back position. It looks as though it is going to end in a draw.
That is what it will say in the record books. We will see who will
go through to the World Cup final by a penalty shoot out.
Sergio Romero, the referee has the whistle to his lips and we are going
the full distance. The Netherlands have been here before. They saw off
Costa Rica in the quarterfinals. They got four out of four from the
spot. Can they do it again? They are now playing an Argentina side you
have not been involved in a World Cup in the shoot out since 2006,
when they lost the quarterfinal to Germany. The match has finished 0-0.
The drama continues, though. The cheers after the toss of the
coin between the captains, Lionel Messi and now Arjen Robben, have
only come from those supporters who realised the referee signalled the
penalties would be at their end. We will have a look in a moment to see
who will go first. It looks as though it may well be... Dirk Kuyt
is coming to have a word with Jasper Cillessen.
will have a look in a moment to see who will go first. It looks as
will have a look in a moment to see is coming to have a word with Jasper
Cillessen. There are penalty shoot out and
thereof penalty shoot outs. A place in the World Cup final is at stake.
-- there are penalty shoot outs. The Netherlands will go first. Robin van
Persie is off the field. So responsibility lies with Ron Vlaar.
He did not take one in the last shoot out against Costa Rica. Ron
Vlaar has had a terrific game for the Dutch and he is first up from
the spot and it is saved by Rome Aero! Isn't that just the way? --
Romero. How many times have we seen that at this level? He has an
absolute brilliant game of football, Ron Vlaar, and it is just a poor
penalty. Romero guessed right. He almost did not have to move at all.
The Dutch went four out of four against Costa Rica in the
quarterfinal but none out of one, here. Argentina have their main man
and regular taker going first to them. Lionel Messi. With the extra
story being the fact it is Jasper Cillessen in goal for the Dutch.
They could not make the change of the Tim Krul on in this one. They
used all three substitutes. Cillessen will want to prove he has
got what it takes. We know Messi has but has he now? He has. Never in
doubt. You felt that Messi almost waited for Cillessen to make his
move. And now the Dutch can revert back to
then at four order. Robin van Persie went second against Costa Rica and
put it into the top left. -- their natural order. -- Arjen Robben.
Robben, bottom right, this time. He gets the Dutch in the tick column.
Dirk Kuyt, telling everyone what is happening. Ezequiel Garay, the
centre-back, but a player who takes a mean penalty and want scored seven
in a single season when he was playing for Racing Santander. --
once scored seven. I don't suppose any of those carried as much
pressure as this one. And he put everything he had behind
the ball. You don't save those. He smashed it into the roof of the net.
The advantage is with Argentina, 2-1 after two kicks each.
Romero has saved one. Now he has to try to keep out Wesley Sneijder.
Saved! Brilliantly saved! He went the right way and beat it away.
Sneijder took only four steps to the ball here, I wonder if that has got
anything to do with the fact that it was saved. Again, it is a great
height for the goalkeeper once you dive the right way. Sergio Aguero,
on as a substitute, can put Argentina within touching distance
of the World Cup final. He is taking a long time about seeing the ball up
as he likes it. -- pings. Aguero scores! It crept under
Cillessen. Cillessen dives over this for me.
Yes, he should have saved it, he will feel he should have saved it.
Dirk Kuyt's turn, he has the score. He must beat Romero and put this in
the net. Dirk Kuyt does that. The Dutch are still breathing, just.
Good penalty from Dirk Kuyt. Argentina are one click away from
the World Cup final -- kick. There is a swagger about Maxi Rodriguez as
he makes his way from the halfway line to the penalty spot. The former
Liverpool man could take his country to the Maracana in Rio de Janeiro
with this kick. Cillessen is arguing that it is not on the spot. Here
comes Rodriguez. Here go Argentina! They are going to Rio, they will
face the might of Germany! For the third time in World Cup history, we
are getting a final between the Germans and the Argentinians.
Blasted in by Maxi Rodriguez, Alex Sabella is one game away from the
greatest prize in world football. One step too far for the men in
orange. It is the Albiceleste who will go on to Rio. Argentina win on
penalties. So that's it for the World Cup
replay tonight. Argentina against Germany is the World Cup final and
you can see it from 7pm on Sunday night on BBC One. Goodbye.