LIVE FIFA World Cup Semi finals Argentina v/s Netherlands: Argentina win 4-2 on penalties, enter first final in 24 years

Argentina – 5: Maxi Rodriguez, the penalty specialist, SCORES for Argentina and they are through to the finals! Argentina 4, Netherlands 2

Netherlands – 4: Netherlands SCORE! Through Kyut! Argentina 3, Netherlands 2

Argentina – 3: Sergio Aguero, SCORES! Match point! Argentina 3, Netherlands 1

Netherlands – 3: Wesley Sneijder, SAVED! Argentina just need to score one more to reach the finals! Arg 2, Ned 1

Argentina – 2: Garay is next to strike, blasts it into the goal, and SCORES! Arg 2, Ned 1

Netherlands – 2: Arjen Robben, SCORES for Netherlands! Arg 1, Ned 1

Argentina – 1: Messi takes the penalty, and SCORES! Argentina 1, Netherlands 0

Netherlands -1: Ron Vlaar takes the first penalty for Holland; SAVED!

Netherlands to shoot first.

According to the team sheet, it seems Messi will take the first penalty kick for Argentina!

End of extra time: We go into penalty shootouts as neither team has been able to score in 120 minutes of play. Holland and Argentina were just too organised for each other, and neither could break through.

120′ Netherlands are now desperately making attempts at getting forward and into the Argentine penalty area, but Argentina keep pushing them back

119′ Robben makes a run through the Argentine left, but just before he can make his final ball, he is superbly blocked by Macherano, yet AGAIN!

117′ Messi makes a beautiful pass to Maxi Rodriguez, whose final ball is very weak and straight into the hands of the keeper.

116′ Palacio! He had a brilliant chance, he couldn’t get any force on his header from the penalty area, and the ball tamely goes to the Netherlands keeper.

115′ A game of attrition begins as both teams vie to prevent that Goal of Death from the other, to take the game into penalty shootouts

112′ Arjen Robben concedes a free kick after a challenge on Marcus Rojo of Argentina, but it comes to nought.

109′ Stefan Di Vrij’s curling cross from the midfield is wide of the goal, but it would have been an amazing goal if it had happened.

106′ Pablo Zabaleta, who has covered almost 12 kilometers in the game so far, has been taking down unintentionally after a tackle. He landed hard on his back and head and is being attended to. Argentina have no substitutions left. Zabaleta has a swollen and bleeding lip, but he has no choice but to continue.

We are back for the second half of extra time, and Netherlands kick off. Both coaches had words with their teams, but they are powerless now, with all substitutions done for both teams.

End of first half of extra time: The score still stands at 0-0, though Arjen Robben is looking really dangerous, finding his way almost at will through the Argentine defence. Argentina have perhaps defended better than what is expected of them.

105 + 1′ Brilliant cross in from Palacio, but there was no Argentine striker to take that certain chance!

105′ One minute of added time has been given in the first half of extra time

103′ Huntelaar makes a bad challenge on Mascherano and is shown the yellow card

102′ Messi is being dispossessed an abnormally high number of times in this game, at least his passes aren’t clear.

101′ Maxi Rodriguez comes in for Lavezzi for Argentina, this is their final change.

100′ Arjen Robben again! His cross from the right flank beats the Argentine defence fair and square, but is collected by the Argentine keeper Romero

98′ Sneijder’s cross is too long, even as the Dutch continue to make Argentina play inside their half.

97′ Sneijder wins a free kick for the Dutch, but his cross is cleared by the Argentine defence

97′ Robin Van Persie has been substituted by Huntelaar! That is Netherlands’ final change and it also means Tim Krul won’t be keeping for the Dutch if there is a penalty shootout.

95′ Argentina clear yet another Arjen Robben attack, who is looking increasingly dangerous as the game goes on.

93′ Stat: Netherlands won their quarterfinal against Costa Rica on penalties. It was the first time they had won a World Cup game outside normal time.

91′ Stat: Argentina have never conceded a goal in extra time in a World Cup match.

FULL-TIME Three minutes of added time was provided, and Netherlands really made Argentina sweat. Arjen Robben nearly scored a goal, but this has been a really strong game from both sides so far. Argentina 0-0 Netherlands at full time.

90′ WHAT A TACKLE! Amazing Macherano! Arjen Robben made a superb run through the Argentine defence, he got into the penalty area, and nearly took his final ball, but Macherano got the finest of touches on it and it went to the left of the goal!

88′ With two minutes left to play, both teams are more aggressive, trying to dispossess the other and make a run through the defence.

86′ A resulting Sneijder corner is kept out by the Argentine defence

85′ Netherlands get a free kick with five minutes to go in normal time!

83′ Palacio! What a ball, from the Argentine half, it cut right through the Dutch defence, but it was spot on target, the Dutch keeper took it with ease.

82′ Gonzalo Higuain comes off for Sergio Aguero, who will play for the first time since he hobbled off in Argentina’s 3-2 win over Nigeria in the Group Stage.

81′ Palacio comes in for Peres for Argentina, who has done well 80′ Rojo prevents another attack from the Dutch from coming to fruition

79′ The Dutch take down Messi again, but their ball is not within reach of Van Persie.

74′ Higuain! What a beautiful ball from Peres, cutting through the right and across the Netherlands’ defence. Higuain sent in a beautiful sliding kick into the side netting! But Higuain was offside and the goal is disallowed!

73′ Van Persie was offside again! He got a great pass and then passed to Janmaat, and Janmaat’s header flew way above the goal

72′ Messi’s free kick is too long though, and it goes behind for a goal kick.

72′ Messi gets a free kick, after a major challenge on Higuain by Vlaar, he basically obstructed Higuain’s play.

71′ Messi makes some good inroads into the Dutch defence, twice, but twice he is blocked by the last defender.

69′ Clasie has been good ever since he’s come on, he’s been classy. It’s his first World Cup game ever.

68′ Garay clears a great Dutch attack with a header, but perhaps the header was not necessary. Janmaat will get some treatment, post which Netherlands get a throw. Jammat had a head- collision.

64′ Indeed, Netherlands have regained control of this snoozefest, with possession at 52% and more successful passes now than Argentina.

62′ Biglia is wincing in pain. He gets an arm bandage, but is coming back. The rain is bucketing down in Sao Paulo

61′ Nigel de Jong is coming off for Clasie for Netherlands

61′ The referee does not book Janmaat after a challenge on Argentine No 6 Biglia

59′ The Dutch have been arguably the better team in the second half, just as Argentina were in the first half. This is a very close game. That one goal could break it.

58′ Lavezzi delivers an excellent cross towards the penalty spot for Higuain to attack, but Janmaat gets across well to cover his central defenders and make a vital interception!

55′ Arjen Robben was making a fantastic run through the middle, but he is dispossessed superbly by Biglia, who sends it out for a goal kick

54′ Both teams have been essentially conservative for 55 minutes. There is too much at stake

54′ The crowd is into singing now as the ball passes around in the midfield a few times

51′ Mascherano played a good ball after dispossessing the Dutch, but Messi was offside

50′ Sneijder whips in the free kick off the yellow card, but it is way over the goal

49′ Demichelis of Argentina goes into the yellow book for a challenge on Arjen Robben

48′ Garay of Argentina has lost his boot, and managed to stop the game!

47′ Before the second half began, Janmaat came off the bench to replace Martins Indi for Netherlands, who earned a yellow card

47′ Depray with a very untidy and deliberate challenge on Peres of Argentina, but he doesn’t get booked.

46′ Argentina keep the Dutch waiting for a while, just as they did in the 1978 final!

46′ Netherlands kick off at Sao Paulo in what has been a goalless but entertaining match so far

We are back for the second half

45+2′ None of the teams allowing each other to score in what appears to be a goalless half

45′ GARAY (Argentina) concedes a free-kick following a challenge on VLAAR (Netherlands).

YELLOW CARD: awarded to Martins Indi for a challenge on Messi; concedes a free kick.

45′ ZABALETA (Argentina) commits a foul. 40′ Around five minutes until half time and it appears that neither team are willing to break the deadlock if it means leaving any gaps for the opposition to exploit. Martins Indi and De Vrij have occasionally looked a little bit nervous and willing to commit a cynical foul, but the referee is yet to dip into his book.

38′ MARTINS INDI (Netherlands) commits a foul on a swift Messi; Indi warned by the referee. Sneijder now needs some treatment, as the Dutch midfielder is caught by a poor challenge from Demichelis. Meanwhile, Messi is down for Argentina, as he was physically blocked off by Martins Indi, who has been slightly reckless in his last two games.

37′ DEMICHELIS (Argentina) is penalised after committing a late foul on Sneijder.

35′ HIGUAIN (Argentina) is adjudged to be in an offside position. Argentina haven’t been able to get the ball into Higuain and Messi too often, but Lavezzi has looked fairly bright.

34′ Messi adjudged in an offside position

33′ Van Persie is nearly found in a pocket of space deep in the Albiceleste penalty area, but the Dutchman is incorrectly flagged offside as he looked to challenge for the ball. Plenty of nearly moments in this game thus far, but no goals or golden opportunities.

32′ Sneijder puts in a dangerous bal only to be punched away by GK Sergio Romero. Sneijder whips in a near post corner, but Romero punches well clear and the rebound falls to Blind. The left wing-back pokes the ball back into the set piece taker, with the former Inter man aiming for De Vrij with his second delivery. Romero is quickly out to punch clear once again, commanding his 18-yard box authoritatively.

31′ A wondeful through ball is intercepted by Robben on the wing

30′ V. PERSIE (Netherlands) illegally handles the ball.

27′ Mascherano goes down in pain as he clashes he head with a Dutch defender. Mascherano goes down heavily after challenging for a header with Wijnaldum, receiving a blow to the head in the process.

25′ Van Persie is nearly picked out by an excellent lofted through ball by De Jong, but Garay does just enough to put off the Dutch striker! The Manchester United man gets contact on the delivery with his head, but can’t re-create his wonder goal from the previous group match against Spain.

24′ LAVEZZI (Argentina) takes a corner kick. BIG CHANCE FOR GARAY! Lavezzi whips in a near post corner delivery, inviting the Zenit defender to attack the ball! He gets across Vlaar, but diverts the cross over the crossbar with his head, earning himself a kick to the face in the process.

21′ LAVEZZI (Argentina) swings in the corner. Plenty of midfield runners are causing a few problems for the Netherlands, though their three central defenders mean that there is usually a spare man present to press the ball. Lavezzi tries to deliver from the flank once again, but Martins Indi makes the block, before the resulting Argentine corner is cleared away by Van Persie.

19′ No big chances thus far, with only Cillessen called into action out of the two goalkeepers. Argentina are holding their shape well and forcing the Dutch to try riskier passes than they are used to. Zabaleta breaks down the right and delivers a near post cross for Higuain, but De Vrij gets across his man well to clear behind for a corner.

18′ WIJNALDUM (Netherlands) commits a foul.

16′ Dutch midfielder Wesley Sneijder puts in a great ball but that one has got too much pace on it and Dirk Kuyt can’t reach it.

14′ FREEKICK awarded to ARG. Perez has been fouled very close to the penalty box. Messi takes this one and that one almost went in but Dutch keeper Jasper Cillessen collects it well

12′ Mascherano makes a terrific tackle to hault an attacking Robben.

11′ Argentina win a freekick and Messi set to take it but eventually delievered by Lavezzi to keep the dutch guessing.

10′ DE VRIJ (Netherlands) is penalised after committing a foul.

9′ Messi’s attack is halted by a strong Dutch backline.

8′ As they showed against Costa Rica, the Dutch are prepared to be extremely patient with possession. Both teams are being patient as neither teams wants to give up an early mistake and risk a Brazil- esque capitulation in the first half.

6′ Sneijder pokes a ball through for Robben, but Zabaleta recovers well to rob the Bayern winger of possession.

5′ PEREZ (Argentina) is ruled offside.

3′ Argentina on the prowl through Perez but Orange Army alert and not letting Albiceleste (ARG) near the goal.

2′ Lavezzi is halted by an excellently timed tackle by De Vrij, as Oranje look to press and harry the opposition from the very start. Van Gaal’s men seem organised and well-drilled as expected, with Argentine only able to hold onto possession in deep areas.


Argentina will kick-off.

Argentina playing 4-3-3 and Netherlands 5-2-1-2 formations.

Turkish Cüneyt Çakir will be the chief referee.

Both the teams walk on to the field and recite their national anthems. Wilhelmus (meaning: the William), is the national anthem of the Netherlands and is the oldest national anthem in the world and Argentina sings the ‘Canción Patriótica’.

Team Argentina line up in the tunnel greeting fellow Dutch players. Argentina playing their first semi-final in 24 years. Argentina are now the oly South American team in the tournament.

More on injury news: Sergio Aguero (ARG) is fit but unsure of fitting in the playing 11 and dutchman Nigel De Jong is fit to play in tonight’s clash against Argentina.

The Netherlands have declared their team lineup. Van Persie, who had a stomach bug, is in the starting XI, which sound good for the Dutch:

Welcome to the live coverage of the Argentina v/s Netherlands semifinal at Sao Paulo, beginning at 1:30 am IST.

After Germany destroyed Brazil 7-1 on Tuesday, both Argentina and Netherlands have been put on notice. There is no denying that Germany are now the firm favourites to lift the Cup, however Argentina and Netherlands must focus on winning a semifinal that may be a very tough game.

Wednesday’s semifinal brings together two of the world’s most enthralling footballing nations in a repeat of the final from the last South American World Cup in Argentina in 1978, as they battle it out to face Germany in the final.

Argentina, who play their first World Cup semi-final since 1990, will be looking forward to secure their third World Cup trophy. 28-years ago, Argentina won their last World Cup trophy, with Diego Maradona playing a key role in the success. This World Cup, it’s Lionel Messi who has been the key to Argentina’s success. Messi has four goals to his name, helping his side progress to the semi-final round.

With Lionel Messi in good form, Argentina will be looking forward to their third World Cup trophy.

However, many accuse Argentina of being overly reliant on Messi, and this could well cost them a spot in the finals against Germany. It does not help that Angel Di Maria is out injured, and so is Sergio Aguero. Gonzalo Higuain finally looked good in the game against Belgium, but can he maintain his form?

The Dutch have a point to prove against Argentina. Netherlands is the only team to reach three World Cup finals and won none of them. In the 2010 World Cup, they reached the finals, but lost to Spain.

Here’s highlights of Argentina’s 3-1 victory over the Dutch in the 1978 World Cup Final:

Holland’s Arjen Robben has surprised the world with his incredible performances for the Dutch this World Cup. Having scored three goals so far, Robben has played a key role in helping Netherlands reach the semi-final round.

Robin van Persie will captain Netherlands against Argentina in their semi-final match. Van Persie has scored three goals this tournament, helping his side progress to the semi final round. His partnership with Arjen Robben has been deadly in the attack, which has caused problems to the opponents defense.

Between the match, key on-field battles will be fought in Wednesday’s World Cup semifinal between the Netherlands and Argentina in Sao Paulo.

Though the match has been tipped as a battle between Lionel Messi and the Dutch defence, Dutch coach Louis Van Gaal thinks Argentina are much more than Messi.


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