6/28/2010

Netherlands beats Slovakia 2-1 in World Cup

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Martin Jakubko (L) of Slovakia is defended during the 2010 World Cup round of 16 soccer match against the Netherlands at Moses Mabhida stadium in Durban, South Africa, on June 28, 2010. Netherlands won 2-1 and is qualified for the quarterfinals.

DURBAN, South Africa, June 28 -- Goals from Arjen Robben and Wesley Sneijder gifted the Netherlands a 2-1 win over Slovakia here on Monday and a berth in 2010 FIFA World Cup quarterfinals.

Robben, a dribbling master for Bayern Munich, cut inside from the right in the 18th minute, dancing past two defenders outside the box and firing a shot in the near post.

Dutch midfielder Rafael van der Vaart dropped to the bench to give Robben a chance to start for the first time in this World Cup and the latter made it.

Robben said after the game that he had been out for quite a long time and he knew he "must be explosive" in the match.

"I played confidently in the game, but I know it was not my top form," he noted. "The most important thing is that we win the first match of the knockout stage. We will relax tonight and sit and watch the game between Brazil and Chile."

Before Robben's goal, both sides played cautiously in a balanced game.

After the goal, the game returned to slow track and both made few scoring chances in the first half.

Dutch coach Bert Van Marwijk said:"I don't think we played that bad. We have created many scoring chances. Anyway, we came here for the biggest prize and we need wins first."

"We deserved the win today," he added. "Slovakia are very tough and they had chances to tie the score or even win the game."

"I must thanked Robben and our keeper today," he added.

Before the game, the Netherlands topped Group E with nine points, beating Denmark 2-0, Japan 1-0 and Cameroon 2-1. Slovakia, the World Cup debutants, finished second in Group F, drawing 1-1 with New Zealand, losing 2-0 to Paraguay, but stunning defending champions Italy 3-2 to advance.

After the interval, Slovakia sped up their attacking pace first and brought the whole game into quick tempo.

Around 51st minute, the Dutch men played superb football. Arsenal striker Van Persie worried defender Jan Durica, who cleared to Robben. Robben dribbled in the same way of his first half scoring and blasted a shot at almost the same point. But it was brilliantly turned round the post by Slovakia keeper Jan Mucha this time.

After seconds, Robben got into the area and found Van Persie, but Mucha made a wonderful save again, stopping it from point blank range with his face.

Around 66th minute, Slovakia shocked the Netherlands once and again. Midfielder Miroslav Stoch came inside and smashed a shot towards goal. Dutch keeper Maarten Stekelenburg had to tip it over the bar.

After seconds, Robert Vittek, who had scored triple in this World Cup, was clean through. The ball fell to him and he had only the keeper to beat from 16 yards but he hit it right at Stekelenburg.

On 73 minutes, Liverpool forward Dirk Kuyt had a crack from 25 yards and Mucha slipped on his way across before turning it behind for a corner.

The second goal came in the 84th minute when Mucha had a nightmare as he rushed out for a long ball and Kuyt stole it, squared and Sneijder tapped in.

However, in injury time, Stekelenburg brought down Vittek in the box to help the Slovakia top scorer grab his fourth goal in the World Cup from the spot.

The Netherlands will face the winners of Brazil vs Chile in the quarterfinals.


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Dirk Kuyt (L) of the Netherlands and his teammate gesture to spectators after the 2010 World Cup round of 16 soccer match against Slovakia at Moses Mabhida stadium in Durban, South Africa, on June 28, 2010. Netherlands won 2-1 and is qualified for the quarterfinals.

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Martin Jakubko (R) of Slovakia gets past the Netherlands' goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg (L) during the 2010 World Cup round of 16 soccer match at Moses Mabhida stadium in Durban, South Africa, on June 28, 2010. Netherlands won 2-1 and is qualified for the quarterfinals.

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Slovakia's Marek Hamsik vies with a player of the Netherlands during the 2010 World Cup round of 16 soccer match at Moses Mabhida stadium in Durban, South Africa, on June 28, 2010. Netherlands won 2-1 and is qualified for the quarterfinals.

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The Netherlands' goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg (1st L) is shown a yellow card by Spanish referee Alberto Undiano (1st R) during the 2010 World Cup round of 16 soccer match at Moses Mabhida stadium in Durban, South Africa, on June 28, 2010. Netherlands won 2-1 and is qualified for the quarterfinals.

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Nigel De Jong (L) of the Netherlands vies the ball during the 2010 World Cup round of 16 soccer match against Slovakia at Moses Mabhida stadium in Durban, South Africa, on June 28, 2010. Netherlands won 2-1 and is qualified for the quarterfinals.

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Nigel De Jong (L) of the Netherlands vies with Robert Vittek during their 2010 World Cup round of 16 soccer match at Moses Mabhida stadium in Durban, South Africa, on June 28, 2010. Netherlands won 2-1 and is qualified for the quarterfinals

1 comments:

http://www.ehow.com/members/stevemar2-articles.html said...

I can’t wait for the World Cup quarterfinals to start! The Netherlands-Brazil match will be entertaining. I want to see Brazil and Spain advance all the way to the finals, with Brazil winning.

June 30, 2010 at 12:29 PM