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World Cup semi-finals day two: how do you follow that?
IT’S the second World Cup semi-final in Brazil tonight, with the Netherlands looking to reach consecutive finals.
And whoever wins will probably be wondering what’s in store for them in Sunday’s final following last night’s record semi-final scoreline.
Germany swept Brazil aside 7-1 on their home patch to leave Brazilians stunned and heartbroken.
Susann Idres, who has been watching her native Germany in Bournemouth, said: “I felt rather sorry for the Brazilians and their fans, they just gave up really.
“It didn’t seem real once it was 5-0.
“I don’t know what happened to them. I don’t think Germany played brilliantly, they played well but Brazil just didn’t try.”
Erica Karouk, who lives in Bournemouth, has been following her home team of Brazil.
She added: “It seemed the team just melted down from the moment Germany scored their first goal.
“In the second half Brazil played a bit better, but I think the issue with the team from the beginning of the World Cup, was how emotionally charged they were. There was no consistency in the team at all.
“I feel sorry for the players, because such a humiliating result will weight heavenly on their shoulder, probably for the next 20 years!”
Turning to the second semi-final tonight, after losing out to Spain in 2010, the Dutch will be hungry to have another go.
They’ve had some impressive results in the tournament so far, but have also had some close calls, not least when they needed two late goals to get past Mexico in the round of 16.
It didn’t get any easier in the quarter-finals, as surprise package Costa Rica took the Oranje to penalties after holding them to a goalless draw in 120 minutes of football.
The Dutch finally made it through to this game against Argentina by virtue of a 4-3 shootout win.
It’s not been plain sailing for the Argentineans, either.
Angel Di Maria is out, but the team is, in a quite surprising statistic, in their first World Cup semi-final since 1990 – and they’ve never lost one.
They haven’t blown teams away in this World Cup, winning each of their matches by a single-goal margin.
Some criticise them as “Messi and 10 other players” – much like the team of the Maradona era – but could they be saving their best for when it really matters?