logo in purple and white sport preview
Search
Close this search box.
section head logo darkest purple sport preview

Sport Preview: World Cup Quarter-Finals - Fri 09th Dec

World Cup Quarter Finals: Netherlands v Argentina

predictions logo accent sport preview

Selections

Netherlands vs Argentina: Fri 9th Dec, 7:00pm

Argentina are well fancied by the bookies to roll into the World Cup semi-finals at the expense of the Netherlands.

The moneymen have Lionel Messi’s men at a shade odds against, with Louis van Gaal’s team close to 3/1.

That may well be tempting for fervent fans of Oranje, but they have done little to suggest they can overhaul a big gun so far.

The FIFA rankings have the sides just five places apart and from what we have seen in Qatar to date they look very well matched.

The pair have faced each other on nine previous occasions with five of those coming at World Cups. And it is the Dutch who hold the advantage on head-to-head, with four wins to Argentina’s three while two meetings have ended all square.

A look at their form this time around has shown little to separate the sides.

Van Gaal’s men have not really impressed to date, although they were clinical in disposing of the USA in the round of 16.

Many, including us, thought the Americans would have the measure of the Dutch, but Van Gaal’s men were razor-sharp in front of goal.

Memphis Depay finished a 21-pass move for his and Netherlands’ opening goal and that has been as good as it’s got for the Dutch in Qatar.

A look into the xG from that came concludes that Van Gaal’s men were fortunate to progress.

Oranje took a 2-0 lead into half-time despite mustering just five shots equating to 0.38 xG, according to Infogol.

USA did grow into the game and created chances in the second half and the xG ended 1.83-2.15 in favour of the losing side.

The Netherlands, though, will not be concerned by that although another repeat xG showing will surely see the end of their World Cup dream.

Argentina have also underwhelmed so far, but they have been strong defensively. Just seven goals scored in four games has meant their rearguard has had to be solid and it has, keeping clean sheets against Poland and Mexico.

Through four games, though, they have allowed an average of just 0.32 xGA per game or in other words they have been very sound at the back.

Saudi Arabia did find their way through twice, though, and minnows Australia also netted in their round of 16 defeat.

That victory was far from convincing against the Socceroos, who almost caused mayhem late on with an equaliser.

Their failure to put away an opponent ranked 35 places below them does not inspire confidence going into battle against a team who were runners up in 2010, third in 2014, but did not qualify for Russia 2018.

The draw looks the way to go and it could well be a long evening on Friday. It’s hardly likely to produce too many goals either, although both teams to score has registered in two of the Netherlands’ four World Cup games and Argentina have the same record.



Share this post

Related articles

Want to read more ?

Featured Posts

Sport Previews

If you’re a sports fanatic, we’ve got the perfect thing for you! Get all the latest tips and stats for Football, UK & Irish Horse Racing, Rugby, Gaa and more.

We’ll keep you up to date with all the latest news and updates, giving you the inside scoop on the hottest games and teams. From the best players to the highest scores, you’ll be sure to have all the info you need to stay ahead of the game.

Get ready to get your game on!