Dipesh Majumdar

Blog and Paintings

World Cup 2014 - Second Semifinal: Netherlands Vs Argentina

As the two teams locked horns yesterday, it was really evident that both were evenly matched. And sometimes when the opponents are equally matched the match might seem little lackluster. They were both trying to test each other out. Both showed great skills in defense and that's the reason why a Messi or a Robben couldn't stand out. That's the sign of a high quality game. 

However one team had to lose - and unfortunately it was the Orange Team.

Netherlands committed some strategic mistakes in this semifinal and this is what I felt: 

1. Why would you not try the same goal keeper that performed so well in the previous match in the penalty shoot-outs? Why would you not repeat the tried-and-tested process and that has already given positive results. As it was clearly evident the goal keeper which defeated Costa Rica had a better body language. I am not sure who was the better goal keeper skill-wise, but sometimes a better and agressive body language goes a long way in instilling fear in the opponent's mind and which comes handy in the big events like semifinals and finals.

2. Why Van Parsie was substitued, because his experience could have come handy in the penalty-shoot outs? Particularly when the substitute was done at a time when the match was rolling down towards a penalty shoot out.

3. Why not start a penalty shoot-out with the most experienced players - Robben and Van Parsie. Particularly when they delivered in the previous penalty shoot outs agains Costa Rica.

Again I believe there are two ways that a team can come so far after having crossed the previous hurdle(s) - first is it commits mistakes and learns from those and thereby emerge stronger. Second is when it doesn't commit any mistake - and in that case it needs to repeat the strategies which already worked in the first place.

Netherlands didn't repeat the strategy that worked for them against Costa Rica.

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