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Krul exit for Costa Rica as Netherlands hold their nerve to reach World Cup semi-final

The Newcastle United ‘keeper was an inspired late substitute from Holland boss, Louis van Gaal.

LATE, LATE SUBSTITUTE goalkeeper Tim Krul was the hero as the Netherlands ended their penalty shoot-out jinx to beat Costa Rica and set up a World Cup semi-final showdown with Argentina.

Dutch coach Louis van Gaal stunned onlookers at Salvador’s Fonte Nova Arena by bringing on Krul to replace Jasper Cillessen in the final seconds of extra-time after 120 minutes had finished deadlocked at 0-0.

Brazil Soccer 2014 WCup Netherlands Costa Rica Source: Wong Maye-E

But van Gaal’s audacious move to introduce Krul paid dividends as the Newcastle keeper saved Costa Rican penalties from Bryan Ruiz and Michael Umana to send the Dutch through into a last four meeting with Argentina in Sao Paulo on Wednesday.

https://vine.co/v/MUEIwbagbJ6

Holland had won only one penalty shoot-out in five previous attempts at major championships.

But penalty takers Robin van Persie, Arjen Robben, Wesley Sneijder and Dirk Kuyt all made no mistake from the spot to beat Costa Rica goalkeeper Keylor Navas.

The unforgettable shoot-out drama came after a gritty duel which saw the Netherlands dominate for long periods without being able to score.

Sneijder came closest, twice hitting the woodwork in normal and extra-time.

Brazil Soccer WCup Netherlands Costa Rica Source: Hassan Ammar

 

The win means the Netherlands are set for another chapter of their World Cup rivalry with Argentina, which includes the 1978 final won by the South Americans.

- © AFP, 2014

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