Jul 9, 2014 at 9pm UK at ​Arena Corinthians, Sao Paulo
Netherlands
0-0
Argentina

Martins Indi (44'), Huntelaar (105')
FT

Demichelis (48')
Argentina win 4-2 on penalties

Player Ratings: Netherlands 0-0 Argentina (Arg win 4-2 on pens)

Sports Mole takes a look at who impressed in Argentina's penalty shootout triumph over Netherlands in the semi-finals of the World Cup.

Argentina will face Germany in the 2014 World Cup final on Sunday after beating Netherlands on penalties in Sao Paulo.

The two teams could not be separated during what proved to be an incredibly tight 120 minutes of football.

However, it was Argentina that came through the shootout after Netherlands missed two of their first four penalties.

Here, Sports Mole takes a look at who impressed during the semi-final clash.


The Netherlands players pose for a team photo prior to the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil Semi Final match between the Netherlands and Argentina at Arena de Sao Paulo on July 9, 2014© Getty Images

NETHERLANDS

Goal

Jasper Cillessen: Made a couple of smart saves during normal time and indeed extra time, but too easily allowed Maxi Rodriguez's winning penalty through his grasp. Has had a decent tournament. (6/10)

Defence

Bruno Martins Indi: Was given the run-around in the first period and eventually picked up a booking late in the first half after fouling Lionel Messi. Replaced by Daryl Janmaat at the interval. (6/10)

Ron Vlaar: Missed in the shootout, but was sensational for his side this evening. Calm in possession and a rock in defensive positions. His side's best player by some distance. (8/10)

Stefan de Vrij: Alongside Vlaar, proved a strong performer at the heart of the defence. Lacks pace, but reading of the game and ability on the ball are impressive. (7/10)

Midfield

Daley Blind: Played left wing-back in the first half before switching to centre-back for the second period. Was never caught out of position in another impressive showing from the versatile player. (7/10)

Nigel de Jong: Lasted just 62 minutes on his return to the XI, but certainly justified Louis van Gaal's faith with a strong performance in the middle of the park. (7/10)

Georginio Wijnaldum: Again deployed in a deep midfield area, but did not have too much of an influence on the match. Passing was also wayward at times. (6/10)

Wesley Sneijder: Has been an inspiration in the knockout stages for his country, but did not have a similar impact this evening. Set-piece delivery was also poor. (6/10)

Dirk Kuyt: Another seriously hard-working performance from the former Liverpool striker, but he lacked quality in the final third. Crossing was wayward on a number of occasions. (6/10)

Attack

Arjen Robben: Was his side's most dangerous player for long spells, but really struggled to influence the match. Was marked out of the fixture by a solid Argentina defence. (6/10)

Robin van Persie: Was declared fit following a stomach issue, but did not look at his best. Touch was surprisingly poor and struggled to worry the Argentine backline. (6/10)

Substitutes

Daryl Janmaat: Replaced Martins Indi at the break and provided a threat down the right of the pitch. That said, his passing and control were poor at times. (6/10)

Jordy Clasie: As the name suggests, was a classy performance from the midfielder upon his introduction. Composed in possession of the ball and willing to put his foot in when required. (7/10)

Klaas-Jan Huntelaar: Replaced Van Persie in extra time and although he showed some nice touches, failed to make his mark inside the box. (6/10)


Argentina players pose for a team photo prior to the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil Semi Final match between the Netherlands and Argentina at Arena de Sao Paulo on July 9, 2014© Getty Images

ARGENTINA

Goal

Sergio Romero: Made two bright saves in the shootout, but hardly seen during the 120 minutes of action as Netherlands struggled to fashion clear chances. (7/10)

Defence

Pablo Zabaleta: Did not have much chance to get forward, but was brilliant in defensive areas. Also showed his character to resume play in extra time following a heavy clash with Kuyt. (7/10)

Martin Demichelis: Caught out for pace on a couple of occasions, but was largely solid. Centre-back's calmness in possession was also a major attribute for his side. (6/10)

Ezequiel Garay: Shackled Van Persie and Robben for long spells and also dispatched a brilliant penalty in the shootout. A key part of what was a strong Argentine defence. (7/10)

Marcos Rojo: Further increased his growing reputation with another all-action display. A threat in forward areas and unnerved defensively. Has had a very impressive summer. (7/10)

Midfield

Enzo Perez: Brought into the XI following an injury to Angel di Maria and settled effortlessly into the flow. Easy to see why the midfielder is coveted around Europe. (7/10)

Javier Mascherano: Man-of-the-match performance from Mascherano, who saved his side late on with a brilliant challenge on Robben. Just about the perfect midfield display from the 30-year-old. (9/10)

Lucas Biglia: Unsung hero in the middle of the park went about his business well. Calm on the ball and strong in the tackle. (6/10)

Attack

Ezequiel Lavezzi: Worried Netherlands with his pace and trickery in the final third. However, did tire as the match progressed. (6/10)

Lionel Messi: Showed glimpses of his talent, but struggled to influence proceedings for long spells against a well-drilled Dutch defence. (6/10)

Gonzalo Higuain: Scored last time out against Belgium, but could not take that form into this match. Showed some nice touches, but was not seen for long spells. Replaced by Sergio Aguero after 82 minutes. (6/10)

Substitutes

Sergio Aguero: Clearly not match-fit, but did worry the Dutch defence after joining the action late on. Also scored a brilliant penalty in the shootout. (6/10)

Rodrigo Palacio: Should have scored late in extra time when he found space inside the Dutch box, but could only lift his header into the arms of Cillessen. (5/10)

Maxi Rodriguez: Might have scored in extra-time following a cross from Messi, but struck his effort straight at Cillessen. However, he did score the decisive penalty in the shootout. (6/10)


Lionel Messi, Pablo Zabaleta, Martin Demichelis, Marcos Rojo, Lucas Biglia, Javier Mascherano, Rodrigo Palacio and Ezequiel Garay of Argentina celebrate defeating the Netherlands in a shootout during the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil Semi Final match between
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