Holland vs Argentina – World Cup: Live score, team news and updates

Holland 2-2 Argentina LIVE: Extra-time begins after sub Wout Weghorst’s second goal in the TENTH minute of added time sealed a dramatic comeback by the Dutch after Lionel Messi’s masterclass

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Follow Sportsmail’s live blog for the World Cup quarter-final clash between Holland and Argentina. 

Host commentator

115min: The fans down the other end thought that was in… Enzo Fernandez lets fly and it’s Weghorst of all people who gets the vital block that sends it over – just about.

From that latest corner, Pezzella heads the ball over the bar at the near post. Argentina have found a second wind but time is running out.

114min: Vital block there by Van Dijk! He got hit in the chest as Lautaro Martinez tries to turn him a low cross by Angel Di Maria.

The corner is cleared by the Dutch.

113min: The free-kick is played to the back post, where Luuk de Jong tried to volley it home with his left foot and it’s well blocked.

Holland change – Cody Gakpo goes off, on comes Noa Lang of Club Brugge.

111min: Lisandro Martinez is taken off, Angel Di Maria comes on. Looks like they are finally moving to four at the back.

Gakpo drives forward through the middle and is taken out by Pezzella. Won the ball but scissored the legs as well – another yellow card.

109min: Daft tackle by Gakpo on Messi and Argentina win another set-piece where they can cross into the box. Now, Montiel has been booked for dissent and he’ll miss the semi-final. That was silly.

They play it sort and Messi edges his way to the corner of the box and tries the curled shot that finds only the stand.

107min: Montiel’s first act is to win his side a corner which Messi whips in to a dangerous area. Keeper Noppert manages to grab it.

Argentina make a change at right-back – Gonzalo Montiel has replaced Nahuel Molina, who scored their first goal what seems an age ago now.

The contest has calmed down a little bit. Not too many opportunities in that first 15 minutes of extra time. It’s so hard to call!

103min: Ok, Timber is definitely on the last warning now as he commits another foul. One more and he’ll be off.

Messi with the dinked free-kick to the back post where Otamendi was trying to stretch his legs long enough to reach it. Can’t quite do it.

101min: Timber in trouble following a collision with Messi, who was about to set off on a dart of him. Just a last warning from the ref which is lucky as he’s on a yellow.

99min: Nicolas Otamendi with the clumsy and tired foul, giving Holland another chance to load the box with their giant players.

Berghuis not with the best delivery, however, and Argentina clear comfortably.

96min: Holland have abandoned their direct approach now and are going back to passing football. Strange, because Argentina really did not like the route one.

94min: Argentina have stuck to their five at the back formation. Messi tries to spark something with a dinked pass to Tagliafico, who tries to get it back to the No 10 on the volley. Doesn’t quite come off.

Oh, Bergwijn was cautioned during the last ruckus. That’s a dozen players now I think.

91min: A bit more housekeeping in that Otamendi received a booking amid the madness that followed the equaliser. I’ve no idea why. 

I make that 11 bookings now, including Weghorst who was booked well before he was subbed on. Also Walter Samuel, one of the Argentine coaches, also got one earlier.

Yeah, think I can take a bit more of this. It’s been a World Cup classic.

Who on earth saw that comeback from Holland with 10 minutes left. Argentina chucked it away, they were cowed by the direct Dutch approach and Weghorst scored twice.

Whatever next?

What a phenomenal finish!

It’s all kicking off again as the players race off the bench to argue with each other.

But what a brilliant training ground free-kick move that was for Weghorst to score his second goal of a dramatic closing few minutes.

Argentina were so on top and they’ve blown it. Now they have to re-focus for another 30 minutes. That won’t be very easy.

It’s all boiling over as well. This will be a great period of extra time and I’d be amazed if we end 11 vs 11.


Wout Weghorst's second goal sends it to extra-time! 😱#BBCFootball #BBCWorldCup pic.twitter.com/2pVsJhuKQf

That is the best-worked free-kick under pressure you’ll ever see!

Teun Koopmeiners ran up, declined to shoot, then just passed it forward as the wall jumped up. Into Weghorst, who spins around and rolls the ball home.

It’s cheeky, it’s inspired. It looks like extra time.

90+9min: More head tennis and then Argentina concede a free-kick again right on the edge of their box. Gakpo will surely have this one?

Noppert on his knees crossing himself. Messi booked for arguing.

90+7min: Martinez is no rush whatsoever to take his goal kick. The cameras focus in on a Dutch fan raising his middle finger and shouting ‘f**k you’. Lovely stuff.

Last chance saloon for the Dutch.

90+5min: Brilliant headed clearance by Otamendi under pressure from De Jong. He wins a foul in the process. Argentina having to dig deep now.

90+3min: A colossal waste as Steven Berghuis slams it into the wall. Gakpo regrets allowing him to pull rank.

Now we have a clash of heads between two Argentine players. No delay.

Van Dijk was actually the man booked and now Ake a minute or two ago.

It’s chaos now this.

90+1min: Cody Gakpo is fouled on the edge of the Argentina box, a wild tackle by Otamendi who had his boot raised. This is a great chance…

90min: The free-kick is deep and can’t be turned back across by Dumfries. Ake is booked for some reason.

We enter 10 minutes of injury time. Wow.

That hasn’t gone down well.

88min: it’s all kicking off now! Paredes with a dreadful tackle on Ake that could be a red and then he reacted by booting the ball into the Netherlands box.

All the subs get up and charge onto the pitch – the referee almost lost control for a second there.

Paredes will be booked and rightly so.

85min: Most of Holland would have been off their sofas there… Berghuis rifles a shot into the side-netting and it looks like it had gone in.

Some kind of phantom deflection on it and it’s a corner, which is cleared.

Holland’s direct approach paying some dividends now. Van Dijk in service as an auxiliary striker right now.

Now then…

Holland are back in this, out of absolutely nothing. It’s Wout Weghorst, scoring with what is their first shot on target of the game.

Whipped cross from the right-hand side by Steven Berghuis and there was the tall figure of Weghorst, getting into a pocket of space, and just helping the cross on its way with a glance.

81min: Enzo Fernandez has clattered Cody Gakpo there but just a free-kick when it might easily have been a yellow.

Another Argentina change incoming as Julian Alvarez is taken off and Lautaro Martinez is on.

78min: Time for some more subs. Acuna going off for Nicolas Tagliafico, which is a sensible move as he’s on a booking. Acuna has been excellent tonight. Also, Cristian Romero is off for German Pezzella.

Louis van Gaal also tosses on another strike – it’s Wout Weghorst on for Memphis Depay. Long ball, anyone?

75min: Another argument with Luuk de Jong unhappy at keeper Emiliano Martinez for the way he collected the ball there. Referee Munoz thoroughly testing that his whistle works.

Martinez collected the cross well and did barge a little into the Dutch striker, but he will always be protected in that situation.

Now we have a pitch invader, which the TV footage is not showing. He is quickly dealt with by security. Depay angrily tells them to clear off, or words to that effect.

Is it going to be Lionel Messi’s World Cup?

His influence is as strong as ever on this Argentina team. What a composed penalty against the 6ft 8in Noppert, who didn’t even move as the ball flashed past him.

And that, you’d think on the balance of play, will do it for Argentina.

71min: Acuna has enjoyed a brilliant game and he’s enjoyed another moment of influence there, winning a penalty. He got to the byline, cut back and drew the contract from Denzel Dumfries.

No hesitation in pointing to the spot and Messi can seal it here.

70min: Into the final 20 minutes of this quarter-final then and, to be honest, it’s been pretty comfortable for Argentina to keep Holland at arm’s length.

Still just the one shot on goal for Holland in the entire game and those changes at half-time have proved ineffective as the time has just melted away.

But it isn’t over yet. Still only 1-0.

66min: Argentina respond with a change of their own and it’s De Paul, who overcame a fitness issue to make the game, going off for Leandro Paredes.

64min: A change here for the Dutch – Daley Blind goes off and Luuk de Jong comes on. Appears Blind has got some kind of knock but it’s an attacking move and they need to take risks now.

The Dutch are going 4-3-3. Ake will move to left-back. De Jong joins Depay and Gakpo up top.

63min: It really wasn’t too far away either and quite a few thought it had gone in as the back of the net rippled. Just inches over the bar from Messi.

61min: Classic Messi there, weaves his way into a gap and wins a free-kick right on the edge of the Holland box after Van Dijk rather ungraciously shoved him over.


59min: We’ve not seen that extra turbo thrust the Dutch need so far in the opening 15 minutes or so of the second-half.

Argentina settle so effortlessly into a low block whenever the Dutch get the ball and it’s incredibly hard to overcome their tenacity.

The South Americans then break through the middle, with a wide open space left. The ball from Mac Allister to De Paul wasn’t good enough though and the chance passes.

55min: How has Messi got away with that one? A deliberate handball in the centre circle as the ball bounced up but no yellow card.

Virgil van Dijk asking if Messi is actually wearing some kind of halo.

52min: Twice now in then early minutes of the second-half, Memphis Depay has tried a little too hard to influence the game.

The first was an unnecessary step-over near the touchline when he’d already created space for the pass. Then there he gave the ball away having tried to beat one player too many.

Van Gaal will be telling him to screw his head back on.

50min: Acuna absolutely incredulous he didn’t get a free-kick after battling his way down the left touchline while it appeared he was being held back. Nothing doing.

Mac Allister tries the cute one-two with Messi but Ake manages to cut the ball out.

47min: Argentina waste little time going on the attack and Acuna wins a corner off Dumfries.

It’s flicked on at the near post but comes to nothing.

The Dutch team sent out some time before their opponents.

They’re going to make a couple of changes with Teun Koopmeiners and Steven Berghuis introduced for Marten De Roon and Steven Bergwijn.

Looks as though Cody Gakpo will be pushed forward alongside Memphis Depay in attack.

Louis van Gaal may have joked in his press conference the other day he still looked like a ‘God’ but this could well be the last 45 minutes coming up of his storied career.

His Dutch team need to come out and attack more. They’ve threatened seldom so far, with long balls their favoured method of trying to get in behind Argentina. It hasn’t worked.

Argentina are bound to try and slow down the game and break up Holland’s play as much as they possibly can but somehow the Oranje have to find a moment.

5 – Lionel Messi has assisted five goals in the World Cup knockout stages – since Opta have World Cup assists (from 1966), this is the most on record in the knockout rounds of the finals, surpassing Pelé's four. Goat. pic.twitter.com/ScHbh5oj1b

The whistle blows and it’s advantage Argentina… they grew into the game and it was a real moment of magic from that man Lionel Messi who created the breakthrough goal for Nahuel Molina with a quite delicious reverse, no-look pass. Only he could spot a pass like that!

Holland have had the odd moment but haven’t really threatened and they’ve been second best on the balance of play.

As it stands, Argentina will be heading through to play Croatia in the semis.

45+2min: Another player in the book and another sub – this time it’s Wout Weghorst on the Dutch bench. Just getting a bit fractious.

45min: Another yellow for the Argentines as Cristian Romero very deliberately punches the ball as Depay threatens to flick the ball over him.

The free-kick was well delivered but Martinez collects it. Holland’s players claiming that Nathan Ake was pushed over by Acuna as the delivery was made. Doesn’t seem to be being checked.

Into five minutes of stoppage time.

43min: The first players booked – and it’s Jurrien Timber, who shoved Marcos Acuna to the floor.

Acuna went down like Timber, it has to be said and he’s been booked too, which would mean he is suspended for the semi-final if they make it.

Acuna had raked his studs down the back of Dumfries’ leg and the theatrical reaction capped it off.

40min: Argentina in the ascendant and Messi twisting and wriggling about in the Dutch box with his back to goal. He manages to shake free and fires off a low shot that lacked power and is saved.

Lionel Messi ➡️ Nahuel Molina!

Argentina are in front 👏

Watch on @BBCiPlayer or @BBCOne, or listen on @BBCSounds 📺💻🎧#BBCFootball #BBCWorldCup

38min: What a tremendous atmosphere here now Argentina have broken the deadlock.

Rodrigo de Paul is down, got a knock on the back of the head which looked painful. He’s fine.

He hasn’t scored it but that goal was a moment of Lionel Messi magic!

He’s 35 yards from goal, switches up the pace with the ball at his feet as he does so well and then plays the most ridiculous no-look reverse through ball into Molina, who’d made the burst.

Switched feet superbly and then just poked the ball past the advancing Noppert and the tens of thousands of Argentina fans go wild!

33min: I believe that is the first shot on target of the contest…

Nice work by Argentina and De Paul is teed up on the edge of the Holland box. Under pressure, he can’t get enough power on the low shot and it’s comfortable for Noppert.

31min: Another flashpoint between the referee and the Argentine bench, with one of Scaloni’s backroom staff receiving a yellow card there. Not sure what the fuss was about.

30min: Not masses in it but I’d say Holland have maybe shaded the opening half-hour and I’d argue that’s because of familiarity with the wing-back system. Argentina, having matched them for shape, aren’t getting Messi on the ball enough.

Having said that, Messi is getting space from time to time but just the one effort so far and that was poor.

Will Lionel Scaloni maybe switch back to Argentina’s more familiar 4-3-3 at the break?

28min: Cody Gakpo trying to get on the end of an ambitious long ball by Nathan Ake but barges into the back of Nicolas Otamendi in the process. Not getting away with that, however good you are.

24min: Does that count as a chance for the Dutch? Bergwijn, under pressure and having to snatch at the shot, drags the ball wide from the edge of the area. Took the ball off Depay’s toes as well.

22min: Liverpool vs Man City as Van Dijk reads the play really well to intercept a ball played down the right touchline into Alvarez.

But the Holland defender can’t get out in time to close down Lionel Messi, whose effort from the edge of the area is uncharacteristically very high and wide.

19min: Angel Di Maria, who is on the Argentina bench, just getting a ticking off from our Spanish referee Antonio Mateu Lahoz for protesting a little too vociferously. Di Maria seems to take it in good humour.

18min: Jurrien Timber attempts the through ball down the right channel looking for the run in behind of Steven Bergwijn. Just a fraction too strong and claimed by Emi Martinez. Better intent from the Dutch.

15min: Argentina enjoying a lot of the ball but their last two attacks have ended up rather comfortably in the gloves of Dutch keeper Noppert.

11min: A promising position for Argentina after Messi was allowed space for a little dribble. It goes wide to Marcos Acuna on the left but the Sevilla man simply blasts it back across the Holland box and it flies out on the far side. A waste.

Virgil van Dijk just urging a measure of calm.

8min: Almost an almighty mistake by Noppert whose pass out from the back is very nearly intercepted by Alvarez right in front of the goal. Gets away with it, just.

5min: Argentina suddenly break with speed and the ball is deflected to the edge of the box where Rodrigo de Paul is arriving. His shot is blocked by one of his team-mates and Holland clear.

4min: An off-the-ball collision there between Molina and Gakpo. Looked deliberate from the Argentine defender, just making a little mark. Nothing comes of it.

3min: Well, you can certainly tell from the crowd whenever Messi is on the ball…

Brighton’s Alexis Mac Allister trying to drive his team forward but the cross by Acuna was easily intercepted.

Formalities done and dusted, it’s time for some action.

Louis van Gaal not showing too much emotion on then sidelines despite the possibility this could be his final game in a long and distinguished coaching career.

Argentina will feel Brazil’s exit means the stars are aligning for them. Mind you, so will the Dutch, who are never short of confidence.

Pleasingly, both teams in familiar colours. Blue and white stripes for Argentina, all-orange for Holland.

The players emerge into the Lusail Stadium and we’re almost ready to go in this second World Cup quarter-final for 2022.

Some 40,000 Argentines inside the stadium apparently and a mere 1,400 Dutch fans. Still, at least they’re visible in bright orange.

Time for the two anthems.

That Croatia win over Brazil earlier on will take an awful lot of beating today but Holland vs Argentina is the kind of game that could well match up to it!

A place in the World Cup semi-finals, where they will meet Croatia, at stake.

A superb atmosphere within the golden Lusail Iconic Stadium, notably from the many thousands of Argentine fans who are in Qatar genuinely believing – and even more so since Brazil went out – that this is their year.

The lights are dimmed and the fans encouraged to light up their phones for the little pre-game show.

Holland: Noppert, Timber, van Dijk, Ake, Dumfries, de Roon, Frenkie de Jong, Blind, Gakpo, Depay, Bergwijn.
Substitutes: Pasveer, de Ligt, de Vrij, Luuk de Jong, Berghuis, Lang, Bijlow, Klaassen, Malacia, Janssen, Weghorst, Koopmeiners, Taylor, Simons, Frimpong.

Argentina: Emiliano Martinez, Molina, Romero, Otamendi, Lisandro Martinez, Acuna, De Paul, Fernandez, Mac Allister, Alvarez, Messi.
Substitutes: Armani, Foyth, Tagliafico, Montiel, Paredes, Pezzella, Di Maria, Rulli, Palacios, Correa, Almada, Gomez, Rodriguez, Dybala, Lautaro Martinez.

3 – @OnsOranje progressed from each of their last three World Cup quarter finals (v Argentina in 1998, v Brazil in 2010, v Costa Rica in 2014). Belief. pic.twitter.com/ZNP04j2QGa

Louis van Gaal has just appeared on the Dutch broadcaster NOS pre-match.

He said: ‘It’s fantastic that Brazil, a top favourite, are defeated by Croatia.’

Adds fuel to his argument that Holland are about to go and win it all, no doubt!

Van Gaal was also asked about Argentina changing their shape to take on his side. ‘It shows that Argentina are afraid of us,’ he replied.

MATT BARLOW: Lesson No 1 at Education City never write off Croatia. Never ever. Not even when you are Brazil, five times world champions and you are one up deep in extra time and they have yet to muster a shot on target.

Because Croatia possess incredible reserves of spirit and an incredible mental strengths, and having spent most of the second half on the back foot, defending their penalty area, they hit back.

Bruno Petkovic levelled in the 117th minute, and Zlatko Dalic’s team won yet again on penalties, for the second time in this World Cup, with goalkeeper Dominik Livakovic making another fine save in the shootout and Brazil’s Marquinhos hitting a post with the vital kick.


It’s interesting to note that Argentina have changed their formation to pretty much match up to the Netherlands for this game.

Having played 4-3-3 for the most part, they’ve gone 5-3-2 here with Marcos Acuna and Nahuel Molina playing as the wing-backs on the left and right respectively.

Lisandro Martinez returns to the back line and Rodrigo de Paul has overcome fitness worries to take his place in then midfield.

Up front, it’s the deadly combination of Lionel Messi and Julian Alvarez.

Louis van Gaal has made just the one change from the side that beat the United States, with Steven Bergwijn starting in attack in place of Davy Klaassen.

He will partner Memphis Depay with Cody Gakpo supporting them in what is likely to be a 3-4-1-2.

At the back, Van Gaal has kept with the trio of Jurrien Timber, Virgil van Dijk and Nathan Ake, rather than feeling tempted to bring in Matthijs de Ligt.

Angel Di Maria was absolutely scathing of Louis van Gaal – his former manager at Manchester United – this week, calling him the worst coach he ever had.

Naturally, Van Gaal was asked about it in yesterday’s press conference and, to the surprise of many, he responded in diplomatic fashion.

It helped Van Gaal that he was sat next to Memphis Depay at the time. Their time working together at Old Trafford wasn’t at all successful but hatchets have long been buried.

‘Memphis had to deal with it too in Manchester, and now we kiss each other on the mouth,’ Van Gaal quipped.


Think Argentina’s fans enjoyed Brazil’s penalty loss. pic.twitter.com/mUDrXTz0AR

Unbelievable scenes in the first quarter-final because Croatia have dumped Brazil out of the World Cup on penalties.

That late equaliser from Bruno Petkovic cancelled out Neymar’s opener. Then in the shoot-out, Rodrygo saw his penalty saved before Marquinhos hit the post. Croatia scored all four of those.

They are through to another semi-final and it will not be a sixth World Cup triumph for Brazil.

Of course a reminder that the winners of our game between Holland and Argentina will play Croatia in the semi-final.

Holland: Noppert, Timber, van Dijk, Ake, Dumfries, de Roon, Frenkie de Jong, Blind, Gakpo, Depay, Bergwijn.
Substitutes: Pasveer, de Ligt, de Vrij, Luuk de Jong, Berghuis, Lang, Bijlow, Klaassen, Malacia, Janssen, Weghorst, Koopmeiners, Taylor, Simons, Frimpong.

Argentina: Damian Martinez, Molina, Romero, Otamendi, Lisandro Martinez, Acuna, De Paul, Fernandez, Mac Allister, Alvarez, Messi.
Substitutes: Armani, Foyth, Tagliafico, Montiel, Paredes, Pezzella, Di Maria, Rulli, Palacios, Correa, Almada, Gomez, Rodriguez, Dybala, Lautaro Martinez.

Noppert; Timber, Van Dijk, Ake; Dumfries, Blind, De Roon, De Jong; Gakpo, Bergwijn, Memphis

We should have confirmation of their starting line-up in the next few minutes.

What a view! 🤩🧡#WorldCup #NEDARG pic.twitter.com/ivpD3Unr9w

What incredible spirit from Croatia, who really know how to go the distance!

Petkovic with the strike from the edge of the Brazil box, deflected off the leg of Marquinhos and that deceived Alisson just enough to find the net.

We are three minutes plus stoppages from penalties.

E Martínez; Molina, Romero, Otamendi, L Martínez, Acuña; De Paul, Fernández, Mac Allister; Messi, Álvarez

So many of the Argentine banners being hung tonight at the Lusail Stadium bear the likenesses of two legends – Diego Maradona and Lionel Messi.

The former won the World Cup, of course, the latter is in the last chance saloon when it comes to winning his.

Those Argentine fans will tell you it’s somehow written in the stars that this is Messi’s time.

And having come into the tournament off the back of some excellent from with Paris Saint-Germain, the 35-year-old has proven he can still produce game-changing moments with his two goals so far.

He is the ultimate man for the big occasion but we know he cannot drag Argentina to glory alone.

There’s finally been a breakthrough in the first quarter-final and it’s the magic feet of Neymar responsible!

He has endured a very quiet game until now but he played a superb one-two with Lucas Paqueta, danced around the Croatian keeper Livakovic and fired into the roof of the net.

Croatia have just 15 minutes to respond.

Incidentally, Neymar has now drawn level with Pele on 77 goals as Brazil’s record goalscorer.

Budweiser is in the process of making ‘alternative, culturally appropriate’ arrangements for player of the match awards to accommodate stars such as Kylian Mbappe who do not want to promote alcohol.

The French forward has picked up the player of the match award in three out of four games, but has repeatedly snubbed the beverage giant by holding the trophy backwards in order to hide the logo.

It was noted after he picked up the gong against Australia and Denmark and he again snubbed any promotion of the Budweiser branding after claiming the award against Poland.


Pablo Zabaleta feels like a little bit of Buenos Aires has come to Qatar given the way Argentina fans have flocked to the Middle East to support Lionel Messi in his quest for glory at his last World Cup.

From flags along Al Wakrah beach to drumming on metros running through Doha, la Albiceleste’s fervent support outweighs any other nation at the winter tournament.

Argentina also feel like one of the neutral’s favourites in Qatar thanks to the pull of star turn Messi, with the 35-year-old admitting last month that this is likely to be his fifth and final World Cup.

“It’s like being in Buenos Aires,” former Argentina full-back Zabaleta, who played alongside Messi in the 2014 World Cup final loss to Germany, told the PA news agency.

“It’s something that, to be honest, I’m very surprised about because Qatar is far from Argentina. It’s not easy to get here you know and it costs a lot money in flights, accommodation.

“But I think it’s because of the moment of the team before the World Cup – winning the Copa America, 36 games unbeaten – expectation was really high and probably Messi’s last World Cup as well.

“People just want to come on and enjoy probably the last few games of Messi in a World Cup.

“I think I can see that Messi is enjoying every single minute of it.

“The fans and everyone back in Argentina are showing so much love for Messi and it would be brilliant to see Messi going into the World Cup final again.

“We’ve been very close in 2014. We know how much it means for Messi playing and representing his country. It won’t be easy. That’s the reality.”

It has been a goalless first 90 minutes in our first World Cup quarter-final. Croatia vs Brazil is heading to extra time. It’s tense.

DOMINIC KING: The room fell silent as Louis van Gaal listened to the question. He’d been asked by an Argentine reporter about the coruscating view Angel Di Maria held of him, his former Manchester United player having labelled him the worst coach in his career.

There was a nod of the head, a hint of a reaction on his face as he pressed a finger to his right ear and listened to the translation. He doesn’t always take kindly to criticism, so there was a collective intake of breath as to what might follow.

Initially, there was a surprise. Van Gaal looked as if he was choosing diplomacy ahead of the Netherlands quarter-final date with Argentina, a contest that drips with history, skill and tickertape and encapsulates everything magnificent about World Cup football.


The 2014 World Cup semi-final is the most recent meeting between the two nations. Argentina triumphed 4-2 in a penalty shootout after a goalless 120 minutes. Ron Vlaar and Wesley Sneijder had penalties saved by Sergio Romero. Argentina converted all four penalties, including their first one by Lionel Messi.

The Netherlands can qualify for the World Cup semi-finals for the fourth time, after 1998, 2010 and 2014. There was no semi-final stage in 1974 and 1978 when they reached the final.

Argentina can reach the semis of the World Cup for the fifth time, after 1930, 1986, 1990 and 2014. They won the competition for the first time in 1978 when there were no semi-finals.

Messi has scored 789 goals in 1,000 official games for club and country in all competitions. He netted in his 1,000th match in the 2-1 win over Australia in the last 16.

Wonder what happens to all these match pennants?

Turns out there’s another quite important World Cup quarter-final tomorrow night (which I’ll also be live blogging…)

England vs France – it has all the making of a blockbuster.

Anyway, Three Lions boss Gareth Southgate and captain Harry Kane are about to address the media and you can follow what they say by clicking below.

This will actually be the sixth meeting between the two nations at World Cup finals alone.

The first came in the group stages of the 1974 tournament in West Germany, when the ‘Total Football’ of the Dutch proved far too strong for Argentina in a 4-0 trouncing.

Johan Cruyff scored twice that day in Gelsenkirchen for Rinus Michels’ legendary side, with Ruud Krol and Johnny Rep also on target.

Their next encounter would be far more significant – the 1978 World Cup final, which Argentina won 3-1 at the Estadio Monumental in Buenos Aires.

Mario Kempes and Daniel Bertoni won the game for Argentina in extra time after Dick Nanninga had cancelled out Kempes’ first goal in the first 90.

It would confirm the status of that great Dutch side as only the bridesmaids in major competition.

They met again at precisely this stage at France ’98, with Dennis Bergkamp scoring one of the most memorable modern World Cup goals to seal a last-gasp 2-1 win for the Dutch in Marseille.

Their 2006 group stage game was a goalless draw and their 2014 semi-final was also a blank, with Argentina defeating the Dutch, then also coached by Van Gaal, 4-2 on penalties to set up a final with Germany.

Given his rather strained relationship with journalists over the years, Louis van Gaal wasn’t best pleased to discover the mobile phone he’d accidentally left in the toilet had fallen into the hands of a reporter.

But that’s what happened this week and the journalist in question noted two missed calls from ‘Manchester United’ on the locked phone screen.

It’s led to feverish speculation that United are going to make a move for Holland striker Cody Gakpo.

Either that, or Van Gaal is being lined up for the Old Trafford job again…


We’re now past the hour mark in the first of our quarter-finals and it remains goalless between Croatia and Brazil.

The Brazilian fans are creating a superb atmosphere but so far their team has failed to gain the ascendancy and carve out too many clear chances against battle-hardened opponents.

Not much in the game.

Louis van Gaal is unbeaten in all 19 games since beginning his third stint as Netherlands head coach in September 2021 (won 14, drawn 5)

Any team getting this far at a World Cup would desire a straightforward and hassle-free build-up to the big game.

But that hasn’t happened in the Argentina camp with coach Lionel Scaloni angered by the leak of news about Rodrigo de Paul’s muscle injury, which was picked up in training.

It led to a tetchy exchange with a reporter in his pre-match briefing yesterday.


We should be in a position to confirm the two starting line-ups in another 90 minutes or so but it’s possible we won’t see too many team changes from the last-16 games.

Louis van Gaal has a fully-fit squad to choose his Holland team from and he named an unchanged side in the last-16 win over the United States.

That meant Memphis Depay, whose has endured fitness issues this year, played back-to-back matches for the first time since September. However, he came through and scored a goal, so isn’t likely to be dropped now.

Argentina have a few more doubts over their team. Rodrigo de Paul will have to be assessed before his place is confirmed.

Angel Di Maria is now back in training having missed the win over Australia because of a quadriceps problem. But it remains to be seen whether this game comes too soon.

These two nations have met at various World Cups but one meeting that sticks in the memory is from France 1998, when the Dutch triumphed right at the end thanks to a magnificent piece of improvisation by Dennis Bergkamp.

And as Sportsmail’s CRAIG HOPE reflects on in this piece, it was just an occasion bursting with colour.


Roy Keane was ‘sour by his standards’ with his comments about Brazil’s dancing against South Korea according to Daily Mail football editor Ian Ladyman.

Players showed off a series of pre-planned dance routines to mark their goals during the match, with even boss Tite getting involved after Richarlison scored their third goal in a 4-1 triumph.

Keane called the dancing ‘disrespectful’ and compared it to ‘Strictly Come Dancing’, with the ITV pundit since doubling down on his comments after Brazil manager Tite hit back at his comments.


We have reached the midway point of the opening quarter-final and it’s been something of a cautious and cagey affair so far between Brazil and Croatia.

Goalless at the break with neither side able to fully assert themselves.

Louis van Gaal is rarely dull in his press conference and it was the same yesterday as he previewed this quarter-final.

A journalist asked how he planned to stop Argentina talisman Lionel Messi and got short shrift.

‘We’re not going to reveal any plans to you – it would be pretty stupid of us to do so,’ Van Gaal replied.

‘But it’s not that difficult to come up with an answer as to how to stop him. You might want to block and close the passing lines. I can’t see this creating too much of a hoo-ha.’


The World Cup started with one of its greatest-ever upsets as Saudi Arabia stunned tournament favourites Argentina on the third day.

It was a result for the ages but it also feels like ages ago now because Argentina have responded very strongly to it.

They beat both Mexico and Poland 2-0 to secure top spot in Group C and things slowly started to click.

Not that they were wildly convincing in the last-16 game against Australia on Saturday night, with Lionel Messi and Julian Alvarez goals putting them in control, only for a late own goal to give their opponents hope.

Still, nobody want to peak too early at a World Cup and with Messi proving he is very much still a game-changer, you really can’t rule out a lot more to come from Argentina here.

Louis van Gaal’s side have been efficient at the World Cup so far and remain unbeaten – but you get the impression there should be a bit more to come from them.

Indeed, quite a few pundits back in the Netherlands have been unhappy about what they perceive as a dull and functional manner of playing.

Total Football it ain’t but Holland have been getting the desired results and that’s the priority for Van Gaal who, at 71, is in the final days of his coaching career.

They started their group campaign with a 2-0 win over Senegal, courtesy of two late goals, then drew 0-0 with Ecuador. A comfortable 2-0 success over Qatar ensured top spot.

Their 3-1 win over the United States in the last-16, earned thanks to goals by Memphis Depay, Daley Blind and Denzel Dumfries, was a solid-enough performance.

However, it’s clear they’ll have to be at the very top of their game to defeat Argentina here.

This quarter-final fixture will be played at the Lusail Iconic Stadium, which has a capacity of 88,966 (originally counted as about 80,000) and is comfortably the largest stadium being used at the Qatar World Cup.

It is situated in Lusail, some 23km north of the capital city Doha, where the majority of games are being played.

Construction on the Lusail Iconic began in 2017 and it was completed in November 2021, with the official inauguration coming on September 9 this year when it hosted the Lusail Super Cup.

It will host 10 matches during the World Cup, including the final on December 18.

Argentina already have mixed memories of the stadium because it was the scene of their shock 2-1 loss to Saudi Arabia to open the tournament but also their 2-0 win over Mexico.

Holland have yet to play there.

We are about 15 minutes or so into the first of today’s quarter-final double header with Brazil taking on Croatia.

I’ll keep you updated on any goals during the build-up to the Holland vs Argentina game but if you wish to follow the game in more detail, click the link below.

What a fascinating pair of World Cup quarter-finals we have today.

Brazil vs Croatia – which has just kicked off – isn’t at all bad but Holland vs Argentina is certainly mouth-watering.

The Dutch camp, for a change, seems to be pretty harmonious with coach Louis van Gaal enjoying a successful swansong to date as they’ve reached the last eight while giving the impression they still have a few more gears to go up to.

Argentina, of course, were stunned by that defeat to Saudi Arabia in their opening group game but with Lionel Messi showing he can still produce moments of genius in his farewell World Cup, they have built momentum.

Welcome along to our live coverage of what promises to be a World Cup classic!

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