Netherlands (4-0-1) vs. Argentina (5-0)
|Date & Time||Wednesday July 9, 2014, 4:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Argentina +140
Argentina and the Netherlands will square off Wednesday afternoon in the 2014 World Cup semifinals.
Argentina beat Belgium in the quarterfinals to get to this point and displayed remarkable defense in the victory. Belgium was only able to get four shots on goal in the loss and goalie Sergio Romero hasn’t allowed a goal in two straight matches. Argentina has shown in the knockout stages that it is more than capable of playing a passive and defensive game as well as an aggressive offensively style of play. And while it once seemed like Argentina couldn’t win without Lionel Messi finding the net, the star hasn’t scored a goal in two straight matches. Gonzalo Higuaín scored the game winner against Belgium. However, with the matches getting bigger and bigger, you can expect the top player in the world to make his impact felt in this one.
The Netherlands had their 0-0 game against Costa Rica decided on penalty kicks and they advanced due to scoring on four of their attempts. While the score may appear to be even, the Netherlands controlled the ball for 65 percent of the time and got 15 shots on goal. The Netherlands could have easily scored three or four goals, and Costa Rica had no shot of keeping up with just three shots on goal. It was probably the best performance the Netherlands have had all tournament and that’s saying something for a team that’s dominated each opponent with all four wins in regulation. What’s scary for this team is that Robin van Persie and Arjen Robben haven’t scored in a while after scoring a combined six goals in their first two matches. Those two will certainly look to find the net in this one.
This is going to be a highly entertaining match that could truly go either way. Both have been playing lights out on both ends of the field. However, once you get into these stages of the World Cup, the best players begin to takeover, and nobody is capable of doing just that better than Messi.
I think the Argentinean star finds the net once and sets his teammates up for another goal and Argentina leaves victorious.
Give me Argentina in a regulation win.