We’ve had our fair share of shocks at this World Cup but we look set to have an elite World Cup semi finals if Holland are able to get past Costa Rica tonight. With Germany, Brazil, Argentina and the winners of tonight’s tie facing off in that order, we have 3 previous winners of the tournament and three of the first four in the betting fighting out for a spot in the final at the Maracana.
And it looks likely that Holland will be able to make it a purist final four based on what we’ve seen so far. Largely written off unwisely by many – this writer included – before the tournament, Holland have arguably surpassed all expectations by topping their group, before winning their quarter final against Mexico, and they come here as rightful favourites even though Costa Rica’s resume of teams beaten is almost as impressive.
Uruguay and Italy were much the second best in two games that they deservedly won, and their non event against England came with very little threat. The worry however, is the slog they went through to edge past Greece, who were the better team for much of the second half before a late onslaught was battered away by th excellent Kaylor Navas. Admittedly this came with just 10 men but this in form Holland side, boosted by a last gasp, at the death win against Mexico, have far more to offer offensively than Italy or Uruguay – who were blunted badly by Colombia in the last 16 – and their journey could well come to an end tonight. There will be better ways to bet on it doing so than the 1/2 offered on the Dutch inside 90, though.