Argentina win a World Cup classic on penalty kicks, in semi finals of World Cup


Argentina have won a World Cup classic with a 2-2 (4-3) win on penalty kicks and are in the semi finals of the World Cup.

For a second time in three editions, Argentina will be playing in a semi final. A tight game vs. the Netherlands in the quarter finals but it was Lionel Messi with a goal and an assist and the drama of penalty kicks.

Lionel Messi provided the assist of the tournament, a no look pass which split the Dutch back line and found Nahuel Molina. It was a great control by Molina and a toe poke to score and give Argentina the 1-0 lead. now has the most World Cup assists in the knockout stages, since Opta started recording them in 1966 with five, overtaking Pele who had four.

The second half saw very little chances by both sides until Marcos Acuna was tripped inside the Netherlands penalty area and Argentina were awarded a penalty kick. Lionel Messi would take it and he would score.

Messi has now scored 10 World Cup goals, joint top scorer with Gabriel Batistuta for all time goals in a World Cup by an Argentine. He now has four goals in this World Cup.

But the match was not over. The Netherlands would score off a cross and a header by Weghorst to pull one back. And the drama was on.

Referee Lahoz added 10 minutes of injury time and in the ninth minute, the Dutch were awarded a penalty after a foul by Pezzella. A free kick played short and Weghorst again would score and the Dutch were level.

It would go to extra time and Enzo Fernandez would come close as he hit the post in the 120 minute. For the first time in this World Cup, Argentina would go to penalty kicks.

Emiliano Martinez, just like at the Copa America, would be the hero. Martinez saved the first two penalty kicks by the Dutch, the first by Virgil van Dijk and the second by Steven Berghuis. Argentina took a 3-1 lead and Enzo Fernandez would miss his. Weghorst and Luuk de Jong would score theirs but Lautaro Martinez would score his and Argentina are through to the semi finals!


  1. I am really happy that we made it to the last 4. But, I am not liking the unwanted aggression shown by Parades. I felt that kick to the Dutch bench was uncalled for. That was the moment which galvanised the entire ducth team and they came back stronger and clinical.

    First half was a master class by Scaloni and team. Second half we were good. But the moments that takes away your concentration from your objective to be clearly avoided.

    The way 90 minutes ended, i was having not much hope during the extra time, mainly due to the way match was boiling into and with Arg players loosing their head to Dutch provocation.

    Fortunately, Some common sense prevailed and we were calmer and played good football in the extra time. We play better when we are calm and in control and iam pissed at Parades that he still doesnt get it. He is a yellow or red waiting to happen.

    There has been a lot of talks post match between Arg squad and the dutch. Most are retaliatory, but what gets projected by the media will always be that Argetine reactions and that paints a poor picture.

    Hope they can move forward and let go this match fro. their head and concentrate on the next hurdle.

  2. Let’s talk about Croatia. What do you guys think of this opponent? My observation is that they don’t play long balls like Netherland, but they are better in possession game. They also make quality crossings so we have to be very careful.

    • First goal was all Netherlands. Second goal was a abit of everyone in Argentina backline breaking down including Emi. I think they didn’t expect a low free kick.

    • Both goals were unstoppable beauties that were not our fault. Our mistakes were giving away so many balls and set pieces. We should have kept possession and avoid silly fouls.

      • We lost control after RDP left. Before that they had a lot of possession but didn’t move the ball to our final third. When RDP left, they skipped right to the edge of our box easily and we started making stupid diving tackles.

      • yeah, if there’s one thing that we need to improve on, it’s game management… especially when we are leading and trying to close off the match. don’t know why we have to be so generous and give teams chance to equalise and make all of us so anxious and nervous and nailbiting. sigh…

  3. The line up for the next game should be:
    ….de Paul…Fernandez…Mac Allister
    ….di Maria….Messi….Alvarez

    di Maria has to start but you can’t sacrifice Lisandro, so I would play him at LB.

  4. I am thrilled like all of you to be in the semi final, but did they make us sweat by giving away the ball again and again.

    When Enzo hit the post in the last, we were reminded of 1978 when the Dutch hit the post in the last minute.

    • Richard, this is the beauty of the World Cup. Spain kept 75% possession of the ball and still got knocked out from the World Cup..Holland scored 2 great goals,Kudos to them, but for me Argentina never felt like they were going to lose this game even though it got tense after 75 minutes. I always like the Dutch team compared to other teams from Europe.

    • Yes they made us sweet a lot by defending too deeply as this only lead’s to giving the ball back to opponent as against Australia too, so i think this is more a tactical thing than due to players performance

  5. We need to have DePaul and DiMaria going forward. These two are extremely important to us. The game changed to more panic with Paredes and when DiMaria came we got our attack back. I am not sure what is going on with them but they are clearly injured and Lautaro has no legs or speed at all due to injury

    • Di Maria was making a positive impact but we were gambling in extra time as we had one less defender (Licha was out) and our midfielders were all tired. I was worried about their counter attack.

    • Agreed, but i won’t blame the players that much as only clearly Pezzella, but i’m wondering what on earth Scaloni was thinking of as twice in a row 2 goal lead was allmost lost allraedy against Australia as simply defending too deeply and against Dutch the very same thing, but thanx to Arg’s amazing players and their character and warrior spirit Arg won, but why was ADM only given the last 10 minutes of extra time ?

    • yeah somehow or rather, the trio of RDP, Enzo, MacA are unspectacular in an attacking sense but they had just been mightly effective against the opponent’s midfield thus far.

  6. Despite Emis heroic penalty shootouts, I felt like he really let us down on those goals that Argentina conceded

    • No Dibu could not do anything about those 2 goals as the first one was way too easily let in as perfect cross to Arg’s own box as even Licha could not really do much to stop that and the second only came because of Pezzella’s dumbass fault as he should had never even touched that guy with so little time left and the Dutch player did not havectaht ball yet in his full controll as his back was facing Dibu too, as for the free kick kudos to the Dutch player whompassed it inside as he saw that it was only Enzo vs that tall player who scored as Dibu could not do anything really

    • The goals were not Martinez’s fault.
      The second goal was unexpected. They were great goals. One cannot stop everything.
      Martinez saved two penalties and that was the difference. The Dutch GK didn’t make a single save.
      I think Martinez is world class but is never counted among the greats.

        • Second goal was a very unnecceasary and more than stupid foul from Pezzella who should know his stuff much better as that is the reason why he is on board, but he just went for the most stupid foul of his life that nearly väistellä Arg as the Dutch player he pushed from behind was with his back against Arg’s goal ! So totally unneccasary drama from Pezzella as such little time left on the game and Acuna allready picked an yellow to miss the next game, this was very silly subs from Scaloni as with both of his subs he just created more CONFUSION for Arg’s defence who were never teally troubled until that header, which was a good goal done by the Dutch and there was not much for either Licha or Dibu to do as trying to save that goal as the only way would had been not to let the Dutch keep on sending their crosses as this was purely Scaloni’s decission and it nearly costed Arg and i truly hope after Australia and Netherlands game’s that he will finalky learn that even u are leading with 2 goals as i think he would done the exact same decission’s even with 1-0 lead with referee as crazy as he was which everyone knew well before and that there would be a lot’s booking’s as 15 or 16 in over all as Arg i think got 8 yellow’s etc..,Still with all this knowledge available Scaloni decided to sub of Acuna who will miss the Semi for yellow’s as also he decided to TaKe out of Cuti as he wasaffraid that Cuti will got an another yellow, but in this game with this crazy referee it was just a matter of time when who ever will be awarded yellow as Messi was lucky to escape an another yellow which would had been turn to red and oh boy what a drama that would had been as all this just because of subbing defenssive players to one’s like Pezzella who should not even be on this team as i’m sorry to say this, but i knew a long time ago allraedy since last Copa that one day he might coat Arg very badly and him and clueless Scaloni who only may have over come his panic mood at the 2nd extra time alkready played on as there were basicly 10 minutes for ADM to try to play with Messi Enzo Paredes Mc Allister and Lautaro so Scaloni and his sub of tournament so far as Pezzella should be ever greatfull for Dibu, Messi, Molina, Paredes, Montiel and Lautaro !

          I’m happy that Arg got through, but this time only, because it was the only thing stopping my son from crying as he had alkready decided that if Arg would loose for Scaloni)s subs mainly Pezzella he would never ever play football again as i understand the very heavy emotions he was struggling through as it once reminded of myself at 1982 when Diego walked out with red card and Arg was beaten by Brazil, luckily he bounched back after 4 year’s and brought me back to 1978 memories as 1990 was painfully, but as i been more older i could dealt with the pain somehow more betterly, but today i was so Angry for Scaloni and his aub as Pezzella as my son allmost killed himself to death literally, so offcourse i’m happy for Arg to win the penalties because of Dibu, Messi, Paredes, Montiel and Lautaro as i can easily forgive ENZO as it was his first penalty shootout with Arg Nt ever, but i was bit surprised that Scaloni picked him to shoot over Mac Allister, though obviously Enzo has a great shot as he allmost scored just before the penalties, but Still i was sure that Mac Allister would had been one of the penalty takers for Arg so another misstake from Scaloni from my point of view, which is not to bash him or neither Pezzella, but the fact is that Scaloni used this his shuffle at the back also against Australia and that allmost costed him too as today nobody could had stopped the second Dutch goal as it took everyone fully with more than aurrprise as it was passed inside as normally with an pass freekick they passed more ir less outside, but that Dutch guy who took that very last free kick was literally so bold and more than clever as he saw Arg lasting one man in the ground and only Enzo defending alone against that talk Dutch player who ever it was, but what a brilliant freekick as i think i never seen such a one passed and played inside and on the very last second of the game, wow, kudos for the Dutch players who were involded in that as the first goal should had been stopped by not letting that Dutch player sending so freely a great cross to Arg’s box as Licha and Dibu could not do anything about it after that cross was launched and the real question is now why again as we saw alkready against Australia Scaloni wil, shuffle his defense at the very end of the game as knowing alkready that Acuna is out semi and why Pezzella who was supposed to bring that very needed experience did sorry to say foul of his life as real misstake even more so than Foyth is perhaps known for and why did he backed down in the game and let the Dutch to level the game by only his choices as when RDP was taken out A.Correa should had been brought in to maintain pressure and not just backing down, though in the end i’m happy for Paredes to score that penalty, but what on earth was Scaloni thinking as leadind by 2-0 and completly surrenderded the game for the Dutch as he did this very same against Australia too, OMG how could he not allready learnt from this as Netherlands were not team of this WC to win the whole WC, no not at all as they did not convince me in any game, more or less they were lucky in every game they played in this WC and that is real truth about Netherlands team which with all due respect for them were not the team to beat as Croatia will be much more difficult opponent and also a better team that has lost maybe only once in 21 games, but all the fuss was made of LVG’s poor Dutch team which had not lost once in 19 games, well they could not pass more further as Arg knocked them out by Dibu and by those who i allready named that either scored before penalties or in the penalties, but i’m more than worried about Scaloni as i’m not so worried about Arg players who came obviously through more than difficult moment so far in most their career, SPECIALKY those who never been at WC before as obviously those who had been did more than great once again for the shirt of Arg Nt, but Scaloni and his too precautious Mind is the one i’m really worried about as obviously now many players having yellow’s as i don’t even know yet if there are others too than Acuna who will miss the semi against very strong Croatian team who came back from 1-0 against Brazil to level the game and won with penalties again as the only thing i can see as, though a tiny small advantage is that Croatia had played through 2 penalty shootouts as Arg has now also played through one penalty shootout, but as i said this won’t matter as we are talking about the SEMI in WC so any team does not matter who ever it will be will give it’a all to win it and proceed to the FINAL OF THE WC aa i truly hope Scaloni will start learning more than quickly about his strategies when leading comfortably 2-0 until the very end of the game as his tactics and Late subs at least Pezzella nearly costed the whole Arg Nt and the country too+ all the supporters around the world knowing that every game could be MESSI’s and ADM’s last one and that is why my son was so sad but Angry and not emotionally well at all as he was suffering more than badly, because this is his first WC and he watched the Copa and Finallissima with me as every Arg WCQ game too+the friendliess etc…and allready at Copa he was telling me why Pezzella is playing as Arg has Licha on the bench and offcourse he could not understand why Pezzella was chosen to final 26 man list as Armani obviously there too with ota and Messi+ADM and even Tagliafigo etc…with more than enough of experience for those who never played in WC before as also i would had taken other player instead of Pezzella as i’m more than hapoy that Mc Allister has prooved me wrong, but not Pezzella as he is the biggest risk even more than Foyth for sure and has been since glorioua Copa days from Maracana, so i truly hope Scaloni won’t use him any more in this WC as i don’t know who he can use actually in the semi against Croatia as many yellow’s could had been avoided if and only Scaloni would had been smarter since the blody Australia game as sorry for my language and nothing against anyone from Australia or from all over the planet, but Scaloni is giving me a real headache at the moment and Yes i know this referee would give so many yellow’s as both teams were lucky to escape red’s given by him and that he made the new guiness record by whistling like in some Techno party, lol ! But, this nothing new from this referee as he will continue his career by the very exact same way as he have done so far and what has made him so famous as he is kind of Penaldo of the referee’s around the world as pure diva, lol

    • I don’t think Licha really messed up the first goal as there was nothing realky he could do as that cross should have not been let to send in to Arg’s box so easily as with the second goal i agree that it was completly brilliant play from the Dutch

  7. As far as I know.
    Yellows are erased after the Quarterfinals.
    in 2002 Michael Ballack got his 2nd yellow in the quarterfinals and missed the final.
    Fifa changed the rule so player can’t miss the final because of 2 yellow’s.

  8. LVG was arrogant. and HOL got what it deserved. it should never have gone to extra time. pezzella shouldn’t have to make that push. pezzella should have scored that header in extra time. lautaro should also have scored in extra time. (i’m not going to even blame martinez that he should have saved it or Enzo for hitting the post in extra time coz they are blameless). damn it. but once it went to penalty shootout, i was slightly more confident that we would win it – martinez is a beast and monster and he saved us.

    and we must really commend the team on how the match was played. the whole ARG team really stepped up to the plate… Messi played well but the rest of the team really stepped up too. think he was pressing slightly more than usual. wingbacks, defenders, midfielders, strikers. and they really played to win it. but for 2 freaking seconds. darn it. but win is win.

    i kept shaking my head during extra time because I still couldn’t believe it. and i was worried because they still had their big offensive players on but we have pezzella, taglifico and montiel on… wtf… i was wondering how were we going to even create chances and try to win it in extra time. but the team proved that they wanted it. and they were still running, pressing, recovering the ball, first the second balls, working their goalkeeper in extra time. Enzo’s hit the post, another deflected over the bar. Amazing. who’s depay? who’s gakpo? who’s frenkie? we controlled the game and thank god the right team won it.

    looking ahead now, revenge time for us against croatia. well done guys! Come on ARGENTINA! Vamos Argentina! Vamos! Vamos! Vamos!

    • Yes luckily Arg won, but u are more than right about that dumbass push which was not necessary at all as Dutch player’s back facing Dibu and such a little time leftbas that experienced player as Pezzella should know this more than anyone in this team as that is why he been brought for, but he completly failed and showed again that he should had retired after the glorioua Copa victory from Maracana as with class like Zabaleta once did forexample as all theese so many yellow’s and extra time and the penalties could had been easily avoided, though Arg may also gain from this as now they really showed a character as players, but not as coach as he could have used his extra time maybe a bit better as he should had defended his players hard fought 2 victorys in a row which both were quite close in the end, but thanx to Arg’s amazing players and their spritits as warriors they saved their coach and their own country alkready twice on a row, so wake, wake Mr. Scaloni as u just can’t throw away the lead of 2 goals and done by of your players who have hard fought for it allready now as twice a row as to start defending so deeply will automatically end up with either crosses coming to Arg’s box and to corners and freekicks that are not necessary as if not choosing a tactic for your amazing players to defend so deeply as just keep compact and stop them on the half line like how they earned you the 2 goal lead or at least don’t let them play with ball so easily and have free crosses to Arg’s box as with a bit of pressure towards the ball will be enough not to let the opponent use their maximum quality with the ball as with LVG’s Dutch was surprisingly like English club football from 80’s , lol ! With every respect, but totally overhyped by LVG himself and super lucky team, which was nowhere near the 2014 or 2010 or 1998 Dutch teams as those teams were so called classics as Dutch teams like 1988 euro team or 1974 and 1978 teams as it was more than obvious since the beginning of the tournament that this LVG team did not have same quality, not even close to those Classic teams as only Scaloni and Pezzella made Arg to suffer today, but luckily the reat of the players saved both their assess as they more importantly saved Arg as LA SELECCION OUR BELOVED ALBICELESTE !

  9. Win is win.. Whatever is coming… Scaloni should be smart in semi final…today he sub all best players.. Last 20 minutes, he could brought Guido Rodriguez..

    Against Croatia our team can be…..

    +++++++Emi Martinez +++++++
    -Romero++Otamendi ++Lisandro
    Monila ++-++Enzo +++Allister
    –Depaul –Messi —–Maria—–
    ++++++Alvarez +++++++++

    • My only fear now is will there be any repercussions on our players talking against Refree ? Especially Messi and Dibu. May be I’m over fearing 😨

    • That is what worries me, sorry to say, but i understand your point as i was wishing for Croatia to win over Brazil, but i’m Still yet fully convinced by Scaloni as so far the players have saved him and much more the have saved Arg Nt LA SELECCION as i trust in every player exept Pezzella allready since last glorioua Copa he should had retire with class like Zabaleta did for example etc..,, as i would rather have half injured Foyth on the field, sorry to say, but i allways had the feeling that he could be the one coating Arg badly as allmost hapoened today, but thanx god again the other players saved Arg as Scaloni should not stand down and just throwh away his team hard fought 2 goal lead’s in such a ways that allmost hapoened against Australia and against LVG’s overhyped Dutch team as most luckiest team ever from the Dutch with obviously very little quality to the past Dutch teams lime 2014 or in 2010 or the 1998 team etc.,,

      I want Arg to play like Alvarez and Messi and Molina were running today as Messi’s running was obviously amazing, so fingers crossed that ADM and RDP will be okay against Croatia as Arg will need their legs also A.Correa’s legs could be usefull, but i think once Scaloni has figured out more or less his best players, then he will stick to them maybe a bit too much with blunder eyes as bringing on Dybala or A.Correa at extra time could have been enough as only 10 minutes of ADM introduction Arg allmost scored or nearly scored more than once, but why start so Late as allmost the extra time was finished and even more so why tonthrow away hard fought lead’s that his players have deservedly allready won for him and for Arg too as i understand this is his first WC as for many players too, but i don’t see the real problem from the players as they are more than willing, but i’m not fully sure about Scaloni’s tactics, when his team is leading comfortably and being completly superior to the opponent with all respect

    • My brother is an avid Brazil supporter (We are Kenyans).
      Yesterday, (the day before the Netherlands Quarter Final), i told him that tomorrow (game day) ‘you will not dance’.
      That was in reference to their dance after beating South Korea.
      He said they were going to dance.
      I actually thought they’d win but I also knew Croatia was playing very well.

      Today is a wonderful day.
      I have a bet with a friend who picked Brazil. The bet is worth $100.00.

      I will not have to part with anything. I am over the moon man.

    • precisely… don’t even let BRA and ENG get a whiff of a chance. plus we get our revenge against CRO and FRA. this is going to be damn damn sweet. but let’s not care about the others. just focus on ourselves and one syep at a step. Come on Argentina!

  10. Man destiny called for Argentina, we getting close and close , we will beat Croatia but we need di maria in that match , this Argentina are psychological strong, team throughout 2-0 lead in world Cup quarterfinals would have been done, credit to Argentina, I swear I had feeling emi martinez would save at least two penalties

    • When I checked the penalty record of Roopert, I was glad to find out that he only managed to stop ONE PK in his career. He is just like Der Sar, tall but dumb at PK.

      Emi on the other hand is very strong mentally. Usually when the team equalized in last minutes like the Dutch, they got the psychological advantage (such as Argentina vs England in WC 1998) therefore would likely win the PK shootout, but Emi was so strong mentally that he was just as good as his Copa America days.

      • Yes u are very right about what u said about penalties, but don’t u think or wonder why Arg had to suffer so much and in such a hard way, though they won by penalties as Dibu saved the first 2 and only Enzo was unlucky not to score from the spot, but my point is that even we all know Dibu is the best or one the the best goalies to stop penalties as he has at least saved half of all penalties taken against him, but Arg can not count on this as u never know what will hapoen with penalties as every penalty shootout is an totally game of it’a own and i find it quite weird that it allmost feels like after everytime Arg is leading towards the end Scaloni allmost like thinking of penalties as he should rather focus on how to win without extra time or penalties specially if leading with 2 goals as there is no point to shuffle his back line or his defence specially when he knows that Acuna allready missing the Semi against Croatia or to bring on a player like Pezella who nearly costed everything with his realky more than dumbass foul which was not even necessary as the Dutch player had his back facing Dibu, so why to create such a chaos as taking Cuti and Acuna out so close to the end of the game ? Also the first extra time he did not react as he only brought in Montiel at some point obviously just to TaKe that PK and brought ADM on only for the last 10 minutes where Arg allmost scored multiple times, but why on earth he goes so low with his tactics everytime towards end of the game, when Arg is leading with 2 goals as this was the second time and nearly costed everything for Arg ? Why not bring A.Correa who can pressure and run with fresh legs and can be a danger to score too, though i’m happy for Paredes taking that PK, but it just feels like Scaloni not really knowing what he is doing as with all respect towards Netherlands, but they were the luckiest team in this WC by far and totally overhyped by their manager/Coach LVG as Croatia even with so old midfield trio as Modric, Brozovich and Kovasevich are Still way better than this whole Dutch team+ Croatia has depth too even they have gone through PK’s allready it won’t matter in the semi at all as semi in WC is alkways an semi of WC and i’m pretty sure Japan would had, maybe not win the Brazilians or maybe they would, but forsure they would had beaten this LVG’s overhyped Dutch team as i’m not taking anything away from Arg as Arg was way more superior than the Dutch, but again Scaloni’s tactics and his shuffle at back for Arg’s defence with this even bringing Pezzella on who nearly costed everything for Arg, so if this is Scaloni’s way of how to kill the game’s, well he could bring also Foyth with Pezzella too and give and just throw away the lead fought by his players every single time etc…Kudos to alll the players exept Pezzella and Scaloni muatvrealkybget his shit together as his players has saved him and Arg allready at least twice on a row now as this is the very WC, where u just can’t stop playing as Messi was running like hell as everytime he enters the pitch he must be thinking at least for a split of a second that this might be his and ADM’s very last game as i think again Alvarez with his running was amazing as was Molina too and offcourse i understand that there is tremendous pressure in every game at WC, but if one being superior to another team, then why stop playing like that as Arg do have the right subs to maintain their running even RDP is taken away etc..,

  11. We r into semifinals. But lot of things to learn from this match. Its not over until its over- Scaloni went into switch off mode too soon. I still can’t understand his substitution ideas.
    Hope he plans well against Croatia.
    oh god, listen to our prayers.

  12. Wow those people who said the referee is crazy you were right!!! The subs were made because they were risking getting a red by this ref.

    We will be a totally different team that played Croatia four years ago. Hopefully we can get chances early as it looked like they defended a lot against Brazil.

  13. It was actually double delight since not only we won, but Brazil lost.
    And while I know Croatia is a very strong team, I will definitely choose them over Brazil as an opponent.
    Brazil is a team I didn’t want to face because of our shaky defence.

    • Actually Arg’s defence is not that Shaky as if i may say so, but Scaloni and his tactics are a bit shaky or at least have come unnescarily more than shaky at least now twice a row until now ! So far the players have saved him and i hope they keep on doing so, but as i do not want bash Scaloni and his tactics specially when leading with 2 goals to kill of the games, it Still leaves a lot of questions at least for me to wonder, but i belive on every player, though i don’t want to see Pezzella again, sorry for that etc.

    • Yes, that is an loss forsure, but why did Scaloni subbed him off and Cuti to blody Pezzella, exuse my language, but it is completly his and Scaloni’s fault that Arg was made to suffer so much with this very average LVG’s Dutch team as that foul from Pezzella is just not acceptable at all !

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