Extra Time, Penalties & Heart Breaks: World Cup 2014 – Round Of 16 Recap

The World Cup 2014 is promising to be a thrilling competition thus far. The Round of 16 just ended in a stunning fashion.

Brazil 1 (3) – 1 (2) Chile

The first of the round of 16 matches started off with a clash of South American frenzy. Brazil, who topped Group A were up against a revised Chile side who demolished defending champions, Spain in the group stages. The standard 90 mins weren’t enough for these two sides as they were equally poised at 1-1 with goals from Luiz (BRA) and Sanchez (CHI) in the first half. The hosts dominated most of the match only to be denied by Claudio Bravo who made a stunning 12 saves during the match. Extra time saw a bunch of flying goal ‘attempts’ as both goalkeepers were on top of their game. The match witnessed the first of many dramatic penalty shootouts. With Willian and Hulk missing from the spot, Julio Caesar was the hero of the match as he saved two spot kicks, to take Brazil through to the next round.

Columbia 2 – 0 Uruguay

Uruguay went into the match with much embarrassment regarding the Suarez-Chiellini bite incident, and after concluding that he would be banned for a considerable amount of time, they realized that they had to step up their game. But Columbia were on fire that day. With a stunning volley in the 28th minute, James Rodriguez put his nation ahead. Their fiery spirit continued in the second half when a brilliant headed assist from Cuadrado set up an easy tap in for Rodriguez which put them in the driver’s seat for the rest of the match. Ospina was stunning as he made a bunch of saves, one from point blank range. If you compare the number of shot attempts, Uruguay were 16 compared to Columbia’s 9. Interestingly, though, 4 were on target for both sides, proving the Sky Blue weren’t good enough at all.

Netherlands 2 – 1 Mexico

If you were to predict the outcome of this match, Holland would emerge winners, by a fair margin. But the story told that night was amazing. Mexico were absolutely fantastic when it came to the defense. Especially their God-mode goalkeeper, Ochoa, who made the usual ‘Saves of the World Cup’. But that’s not all; the men in green were pushing forward with exceptional vision to make clear runs and passes and in the 48th minute, dos Santos shrugged off a couple of Holland defenders and made a strike on goal where Cillessen was helpless. Just when the Oranje had lost hope, a second attempt at a corner late in the game saw Sneijder make a run to score from just outside the box taking the game to extra time. Unfortunately though, a Robben dive in the box made sure the referee awarded a penalty kick to his side. With Jan-Klass Huntelaar off the bench, he struck it home and sealed their side’s victory to put them through to the quarter finals.

Costa Rica 1 (5) – 1 (3) Greece

The infamous Group of Death saw underdogs Costa Rica surprise the world by defeating Italy and Uruguay and holding onto a goalless draw against England in the group stages which made them table toppers for Group D. On the other hand, Greece defeated Ivory Coast in the final group match to see them through to the pre quarters. The match was tipped in favour of the Los Ticos team from the start. After 90 mins of play which ended in a 1-1 draw with goals from Ruiz (CRC) and Papastathopoulos (GRE) who scored in injury time took matters into extra time which ultimately went to penalties. Costa Rica were pitch perfect as their 5 first attempts were solid. Greece, however missed their 4th penalty kick in a very dramatic way which resulted in their loss that night.

France 2 – 0 Nigeria

The French were held to their toes as the Nigerians gave them plenty of unexpected thrills during the match. As the World Cup has shown, it has been only about the goalkeepers. And what a fine night Enyeama was living. He made 8 saves during the match and an unforced error by him resulted in Pogba heading home the opening goal of the match. In terms of shots taken to shots on target to possession, Nigeria dominated. If only possible, luck was to blame. And soon enough in the dying moments of the game, Yobo scored an own goal which deepened the sadness that already prevailed in the Nigerian side.

Germany 2 – 1 Algeria

After destroying Ronaldo and his men 4-0, the Germans have failed to make an impact as a dominating nation. Drawing 2-2 to Ghana and winning on a lone goal against USA upped Algeria’s confidence to slide through to the quarters. A goalless 90 mins was a brilliant feat for the Algerians who thought their penalty shoot out chances might take them through. But Schürrle struck in the 92nd minute and soon after, a two touch pass back to Özil in the box sealed their side’s win. But the story didn’t end there. A relentless fight back was seen as substitute Djabou scored a consolation goal.

Argentina 1 – 0 Switzerland

Two equally deemed teams played a fine match for 120 odd minutes. It was Messi vs the Apline Messi aka Shaqiri who played an important part in the Swiss attack. Drmić missed an easy opportunity to score late in the first half. Thinking of chipping the ball, Romero easily got his hands safely on the ball. In the 118th minute, Di Maria was set up by an incredible run and pass by Messi to score and crush the Swiss hopes and dreams of reaching the quarters. But in the 120th minute, a header by Dzjemaili hit the end of the post with the rebound going of his knee and wide with keeper completely beat.

Belgium 2 – 1 USA

Two dark horses were set to face off against each other in an erupting match. And that just happened. With a goalless 90 mins with both sides missing ample opportunities to score, they were put to the test in extra time as Belgium strikes twice in close contention to put them ahead. Goals from de Bruyne and Lukaku had sealed so had they thought. Julian Green hit home a stunner to bring them back to life. A last minute goal scoring opportunity was missed to take it to penalty shootouts. Tim Howard was on top of his game and definitely didn’t deserve to be on the losing side.


Written by Dinesh V

Co-founder of Soccersouls. Living a start-up life 24/7
Follow @dineshintwit

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