Argentina seal semi-finals after stunning win in Qatar


Lusail, Qatar — Argentina has secured a place in the semi-finals in the World Cup Netherlands 4-3 on penalties Friday night.

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Lionel Scaloni’s side go 2-0 up thanks to two pieces in the closing stages of the match Lionel Messi Talent. first he decided Nahuel MolinaK’s opener, and then gave home a second-half penalty.

However, the Dutch struggled with the substitute wout weghorst planting past a header Emiliano Martinez equalized in the 83rd minute before finishing off a perfectly planned free-kick routine in the 90+11th minute. extra time was a tense affair but it was Albiceleste who knocked out the Netherlands on a penalty with Martínez Hero.

jump to: player ratings , Best/Worst Performers , Highlights and Notable Moments , postmatch quotes , key figures , upcoming fixtures

Swift response

1. Argentina Qatar 2022 emerges from one of the wildest Games ever

In a World Cup of ups and downs, shock results and penalty shootout heroes, until the craziness of injury time, it seemed one of the more obvious outliers. The first half was fairly monotonous, until Messi opened the scoring with an inelegant reverse pass. He went to the edge of the Netherlands box, and with one flick, took four Dutch defenders out of the game and found the attacking Molina, who had space to cross it. andries knoppert,

When Messi added a second from the penalty spot, it looked as though Argentina were headed home.

But then 15 minutes of Dutch talent closed out the 90 minutes. Weghorst’s header was brilliantly volleyed past Martínez with seven minutes of normal time, and then in the 10th minute of injury time, he added one of Weghorst’s best set pieces for his second World Cup. Scripts were torn up, match reports were rewritten, and it was all in the face of Dutch intensity and pressure.

At this stage, referee Antonio Mateu Lahoj had already lost control of the match, and it was fair that there was a second scramble to end regular time. It was only a matter of time before the contest descended into a brawl leandro paredes After committing the foul, he hit the ball with a hammer into the Dutch dugout.

By the end of the night, Lahoz had handed out 17 yellow cards — baffling how there were no red cards in the match — and his calls didn’t seem to be consistent. The handballs disappeared – including a stunning Messi goal in the 55th minute – and he managed to make himself the center of attention.

Eventually, Argentina emerged from the madness with a win and a place in the semi-finals.

2. Van Gaal strikes again

Netherlands manager Louis van Gaal has faced some significant criticism at home this World Cup. He is aware of the noise of disagreement around his game plan for the Dutch in Qatar – he is asked about it at almost every news conference – but he is clear about his strategy, football philosophy and how he wants his side to play . He cares little about what others think, such is the self-belief that has guided him throughout his 36-year career.

So even when the Netherlands were trailing 2–0, Van Gaal was confident. At half time, a picture of a document titled “Plan B” was circulating on social media. The photo was taken at the stadium and shows a pad of paper left on Van Gaal’s chair during the match. There was an alternate formation on it: 3–2–3–2, with luq de jong And Weghorst is leading the line. However the final replay was shifted slightly – Van Gaal had already drawn up a plan for the final throw of the match if they were chasing.

And the pre-planned tactical shift worked to perfection. They even had that match-drawing set up which gave Weghorst enough room to get a late, late equaliser.

Although they eventually lost on penalties, Van Gaal proved once again why he is one of the great managers of modern football. He may not be to everyone’s liking, but he’s been a box office hit here in Qatar, and you hope we haven’t seen the last of him.

3. Argentina closes in on another win

For so long, it seemed like a perfect day for Argentina. They had managed the game brilliantly but now it is doubly so in games in which they have let loose their grip on the match in the dying moments.

against Australia They almost equalized when they came late, but they only Lisandro Martinez‘ defended with a last gasp. On this night, even with Weghorst’s double overtime and penalty, they could not keep the Dutch out.

There is no way to let the Netherlands go back in this match. Their 3–5–2 formation had served them well up to that point, but focus and discipline went by the wayside, and their opponents swooned. Any analysis of this match must focus on the game management – or lack thereof – of Scaloni’s team in those final moments. He had a warning against Australia, but clearly he didn’t heed it. The substitutes were unfairly judged and hindered rather than helped their team’s momentum.

Player Rating (1 = worst, 10 = best)

Netherlands: Andries Knoppert 7, virgil van dijk 7, jurian timber 7, Nathan AK 7, denzel dumfries 5, daily blind 6, frankie de jong 6, marten de roon 5, kodi gakpo 6, memphis depe 6, steven bergwijn 5

sub: Ten Copeminers 7, steven barguis 7, Luc de Jong 7, Wat Weghorst 9

Argentina: Emiliano Martinez 6, Lisandro Martinez 6, Nicolas Otamendi 6, christian romero 7, marcos acuña 8, Nahuel Molina 7, enzo fernandez 7, Alexis McAllister 6, rodrigo de paul 7, Julian Alvarez 6, Lionel Messi 9

sub: Leandro Paredes 7, German Pezzella 6, Nicolas Tagliafico 6, Lautaro Martinez 6

best and worst performers

Best: Lionel Messi, Argentina. His star man again. Another incredible performance from the Argentina skipper.

Bad: Steven Bergwijn, Netherlands. ajax The forward failed to hold on to the match and was substituted at half-time.

Highlights and Notable Moments

The pass that broke the internet. From Messi, who else?

If any part of the internet still worked up after Messi’s pass, it didn’t after Weghorst’s incredible set-piece goal.

After the match: What the players and managers said

Van Dijk: “We trained for it. Everything went on until tonight. It hurts a lot. The game had everything. It hurts a lot, personally too. I hit the penalty hard, the keeper took it well We had so much confidence that we would continue tonight with this special group of people. I’m sad, disappointed. Everything hurts.”

Van Gaal: “Am I proud? What is pride when you lose? You go into the World Cup with one goal. You try to win everything. It’s not possible, you already know it.”

Key Stats (Provided by ESPN Stats & Info)

Messi’s assist was his 50th for Argentina. This was his fifth assist in a World Cup knockout game, passing Pele For most dating back to 1966. It was his seventh overall in the tournament, tied for second with Grzegorz Leto. poland Eight behind Diego Maradona.

– Messi’s penalty took him to 17 goals in a single World Cup, surpassing Maradona (16) for the most among Argentine men. The goal also sees Messi tied with Gabriel Batistuta for the most goals among Argentine men with 10 goals.

– Weghorst’s 90+11th minute goal is the latest goal scored by the Netherlands in a World Cup match. He became the first Dutch male player to score two goals as a substitute in a World Cup match.

– Weghorst’s last gasp goal is the latest equalizer scored in regulation in World Cup history.


Netherlands: After leaving Qatar, the Dutch will be off for a few months before returning to action in Euro 2024 qualifying. France On 24 March.

Argentina: Albiceleste advance to the semi-finals, where they will meet Croatia Tuesday at 2 p.m. ET.

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