Messi And Di Maria See Argentina Past Holland

Argentina 2-1 Netherlands

Reigning Olympic champions Argentina donminated the clash of the day and ran out deserved winners. However, they needed extra time to make their way past Holland.

Argentina qualified for the quarterfinals without a problem, defeating the likes of Ivory Coast, Australia and Serbia. Netherlands on the other hand struggled through the group phase and needed two late Gerald Sibon goals to qualify.

Argentina had no injury problems or suspensions and started with all their star players, while Netherlands manager Foppe de Haan was plagued by the injury of Roy Makaay and the suspension of Kew Jaliens. Despite being the hero for Oranje in their last two matches, veteran forward Sibon surprisingly didn’t make it to the starting eleven.

First Half

Argentina started the much stronger of the two sides, and dominated proceedings in the midfield, while the Dutch defended in numbers. Lionel Messi was a constant menace in the Argentina attack, and created havoc for the Dutch defense time and time again.

But it was the Netherlands who came closest to going ahead when a powerful Urby Emanuelson drive flashed wide of Oscar Ustari's post.

However, Sergio Batista's side were still on top and they piled heavy pressure on the Dutch goal before they finally went ahead in the 14th minute through Messi. After a brilliant collective move Messi skipped past Dutch goalkeeper Kenneth Vermeer and blasted the ball into the back of the net.

Argentina were clearly the better team, but they paid the penalty for not making the most of their goalscoring opportunities when in the 36th minute a fortunate rebound from a free-kick found Otman Bakkal in front of goal with Ustari just to beat. The midfielder made no mistake, making the score 1-1.

Second Half

Minutes after the break Sergio Aguero had a fabulous opportunity to put Argentina ahead when he beat the offside trap and roared through on goal. However, the Atletico Madrid striker shot well wide of the Dutch goal.

In the 53rd minute, Aguero was at it again - this time with a terrific header that flashed inches wide of Vermeer's right post.

Argentina looked very dangerous when moving forward, particularly down the left flank through Angel Di Maria. In the 77th minute, Di Maria was clearly impeded in the area but the match referee waved play on.

Although Argentina dominated most of the half, The Netherlands almost won the match with four minutes remaining on the clock. Emanuelson was clear on goal with just the goalkeeper to beat but he curled his effort over the crossbar.

In the final minute of the match, Messi went on a sensational solo run when he dashed past a number of opponents but he had his final effort saved by Vermeer.

Seconds later, Ryan Babel saw his deflected drive flash inches wide of the left post as ninety minutes of intense action came to an end.


As was the case at the beginning of the second half Aguero was put through on goal after latching onto a precise ball, but once again the speedy striker failed to capitalize.

In the 105th minute of injury time, Messi assisted Di Maria with a brilliant through ball and the Benfica striker beat the Dutch goalkeeper with a cool finish with the outside of his boot.

Despite heavy pressure from the Dutch late on, Argentina held on and set up an enticing semi-final showdown with South American rivals Brazil, who defeated Cameroon 2-0 in the earlier match.


Argentina: Ustari (gk) (Romero/75), Zabaleta, Monzon, Garay, Pareja, Gago, Mascherano, Riquelme, Di Maria (Banega/106), Messi, Aguero (Lavezzi/99)

Holland: Vermeer (gk), Zuiverloon, Marcellis, Pieters, Jong-a-Pin (Sibon/108), De Guzman, Sno (Maduro/46), Bakkal, Drenthe (Beerens/96), Emanuelson, Babel

Referee: Marrufo (USA)

Yellow Cards: Pareja, Messi (Argentina), Sno, Zuiverloon (Holland)

Red Cards: none

Goals: 1-0 Messi,14
1.1Bakkal, 36
2-1 Di Maria, 105

Argentina needed an extra time effort from Di Maria to see them into the Semi Finals of Olympic Men’s tournament.

14′ Lionel Messi

36′ Bakkal

Extra Time

105′ Di Maria

14′ Lionel Messi

36′ Bakkal

105′ Di Maria

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Messi And Di Maria See Argentina Past Holland Reviewed by admin Ucop on 6:39 PM Rating: 5

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