Thursday, February 22, 2024

Netherlands vs Argentina: Total Football against Messi

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Market Desk (sports): Lionel Messi’s bid for a first World Cup continues on Friday when Argentina takes on the Netherlands in quarter-final at Qatar which is also a replay of some classic matches.

1974: Argentina could do nothing to stop a wave of Total Football by Netherland from the first whistle and didn’t let up until the very end, a 4-0 scoreline. Johan Cruyff was at the peak of his powers and both opened and closed the scoring in a magical team display which highlighted the cutting-edge tactics that would go on to influence football for decades to come.

1978: Missing Cruyff, who was subjected to a kidnapping attempt before the tournament, the Netherlands lost their second straight final against host nation.

Argentina claimed their first WC in extra-time thanks to their star man Mario Kempes and sending his team to a 3-1 win.

1998: Dennis Bergkamp scored plenty of spectacular goals in his career but few match the importance of his last-minute winner in their 2-1 quarter-final victory over Argentina in Marseille in 1998.

2014: Louis van Gaal was coach 8 years ago when the Netherlands missed out penalty shoot-out. Van Gaal had Arjen Robben and Robin van Persie at his disposal while peak Messi was on the field for Argentina but the both teams cancelled each other out in a match of few opportunities.

The Netherlands gave birth to a heartwarming philosophy called ‘Total Football’ by Johan Cruyff and Renash Michel. The Dutch played in the 1974, 1978 and 2010 WC final. However, the title is still elusive.

Netherlands-Argentina have met 5 times in the WC. In 1974 the Netherlands won 4-0, in the 1978 WC Argentina won 3-1, in 1998 the Dutch again won 2-1. After a goalless draw in 2006, Argentina had the last laugh in a tiebreaker at the 2014 WC. Who will laugh in 2022?

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