July 05, 2014

The Netherlands Faces Underdog Costa Rica in World Cup: The Netherlands and Costa Rica meet in the World Cup for the first time Saturday to decide the final spot in the quarterfinals. The Netherlands has won 10 of its last 11 World Cup matches, losing only to Spain in the 2010 finals. Costa Rica, the biggest surprise of the tournament, is the first CONCACAF team to reach a quarterfinal in 12 years.

posted by rcade to soccer at 02:01 PM - 7 comments

That was a Krul way for Costa Rica to go out.

And as much as I HATE Robben's diving, the man is a god damn Energizer Bunny out there. He's 30, looks 40, but he put more effort out there than anyone else in the tournament. He just runs and runs and runs (and flops, and dives, and embellishes...)

posted by grum@work at 09:56 PM on July 05, 2014

The embellishment bugs me too, but Robben is incredible. You can't help but focus on him. He's a human gyroscope. The talent levels aren't the same, but it reminds me of Edgar Davids in Tottenham. Some players are incredibly watchable in a game.

Krul's gamesmanship was awesome. I think the main purpose of walking up to each Costa Rica penalty taker was to emphasis his 6-foot-3 height. According to this page, only one player on Costa Rica is that tall and most of the players are under 6 feet.

posted by rcade at 10:15 PM on July 05, 2014

Holland should have been smarter than that. How to beat an offside trap is pretty basic coaching.

Robben was the most effective because he was playing in the inverted role, so he was looking to come back inside onto his left foot inside from the right flank. Depay and Van Persie couldn't figure it out on the left or in the middle.

But we'll be seeing a lot of "Dennis Bergkamp! Dennis Bergkamp!" in the next few days leading up to the semi with Argentina.

posted by owlhouse at 09:32 PM on July 06, 2014

In regards to Robben, my two older sons (ages 6 and 8) kept asking how that "really old guy" could be competing (and so well) at the highest level. I told them that he has looked like that since he was 20.

Another burning question has been how a guy named Fred (who they have branded as a cheat since game 1) could be allowed to play, when he clearly has the name and face of a guy "that works at Target" (their words, not mine).

posted by holden at 10:57 PM on July 06, 2014

He also plays like a guy who works at Target.

posted by owlhouse at 01:36 AM on July 07, 2014

+1 owlie. Most enjoyable moment from Brazil this tournament may have been replacing Fred with Jo. A country apparently full of Kakas, Ronaldinhos, Socrateses, Hulks, Peles, they swap Fred for Jo.

posted by yerfatma at 11:31 AM on July 07, 2014

Classic Peg was not available.

Enjoy the simple Brazilian names while you can.

Not just limited to Brazil. Yeltsin is fast becoming the new Joe.

posted by beaverboard at 12:10 PM on July 07, 2014

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