2014 WORLD CUP SOCCER
vs. COSTA RICA
Kickoff: Saturday, 4:00 p.m. EDT
Arena Fonte Nova – Salvador, Brazil
Netherlands -204, Costa Rica +600, Tie after Regulation +325
Over/Under: 2.5 Goals (Over +115, Under -135)
After a dramatic comeback in the final minutes of their Round of 16 match, the Netherlands looks to conquer heavy underdog Costa Rica on Saturday.
Here is the BetDSI Sportsbook preview of Saturday's match:
Netherlands was in a lot of trouble late in the game against Mexico, and the team was having a lot of trouble scoring on breakout star goaltender Guillermo Ochoa. They would eventually get it together, however, and a controversial 2-1 win now pits them against a defensive-minded Costa Rica team that has surprised everybody with how far they’ve gotten. Costa Rica was not given much of a chance to advance to where they are now, but they have played very well and were able to survive a scary game against Greece with a win in penalty kicks to give themselves the opportunity to advance to the semifinal round. The Netherlands will likely be missing defensive-minded midfielder Nigel de Jong, who suffered an injury versus Mexico.
Forty-eight minutes into the Round of 16 matchup between Netherlands and Mexico, Giovani Dos Santos scored to give Mexico a 1-0 lead. Netherlands outshot Mexico 8-7 on goal and had possession of the ball for 55% of the game. Mexico appeared to be sitting pretty as they led 1-0 going into the final minutes of the game. At the 88-minute mark, however, Wesley Sneijder blasted a kick that Ochoa had no chance of saving to even up the game at 1-1. Then four minutes into extra time, Klaas-Jan Huntelaar scored on a controversial penalty kick that was drawn by Arjen Robben (3 goals in World Cup) in the box, after Robben appeared to flop despite very little contact. With those two goals in a six-minute span, Netherlands now has 12 goals over four World Cup matches.
At the 52-minute mark in their game against Greece, Bryan Ruiz would score to give Costa Rica a 1-0 lead. However, a second yellow card picked up by defender Oscar Duarte would leave Costa Rica down a man for most of the second half. Duarte will not be allowed to play on Saturday because of his two bookings. Sokratis Papastathopoulos scored in extra minutes for Greece to tie it up 1-1 and that was a disaster for Costa Rica, as they would have to play an extra half hour down a man. Costa Rica, however, played excellent defense in the extra time and was able to force penalty kicks. They did not miss one of those shots and went on to grab the shootout 5-3, thanks in large part to goalkeeper Keylor Navas making a crucial save. Costa Rica was extremely resilient all match and deserved the win, as Greece was unable to capitalize on a major advantage.