Liga MX in the World Cup: Argentina, Semifinals

argentina flagAfter a substitute appearance in the round of sixteen and a start in the quarterfinals, Monterrey’s José María Basanta was back on the bench for Argentina’s semifinal match vs the Netherlands.

He had made his first appearance of the tournament when he replaced an injured Marcos Rojo, but Rojo was back in the starting lineup tonight, reclaiming his spot in defense from Basanta.

Neither the Argentinian nor the Dutch defense were overworked in this one. Chances were few for both teams, with ESPN statistics revealing just 4 shots on goal for the Dutch and 5 for the Argentinians. The game remained goalless throughout the ninety minutes of regulation and the half-hour of overtime, which sent the game to penalties.

Goalkeeper Sergio “Chiquito” Romero then became the hero for Argentina, as he saved the first Dutch penalty, which allowed the South Americans to take the early lead when Leo Messi made his kick. The two teams exchanged makes, from Arjen Robben and Ezequiel Garay, before Romero saved Wesley Sneijder’s kick. Although Dirk Kuyt scored for the Netherlands on their fourth kick, penalties from Sergio Agüero and Maxi Rodríguez gave Argentina the win and a date with Germany in the final.

Next game: vs Germany – Sunday, July 13th – 3:00 PM – Univision/Univision Deportes/ESPN

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