Tuesday, July 06, 2010
Round of 16. Match 5: Netherlands 2-1 Slovakia
The Netherlands created the best opportunities. Sneijder was in great form and Robben was everywhere with his jinking runs and crosses. Robben also scored a fantastic opening goal as he received a pass from Sneijder, advanced to the corner of the box and powered in a beautiful, low left foot shot. The Dutch defence for the most part stood firm, ably assisted by defensive midfielders De Jong and van Bommel.
It was no way a vintage performance from the Dutch and they never appeared to hit top gear. There was always the impression that the Dutch still hadn't hit great form yet. But they were effective in their win. The second goal after a goalkeeping blooper sealed the victory but there was still time in the dying seconds for Stekelenburg to upend Jakubko, and Vittek to slot home the resulting penalty. It was a moment of poor judgement for the keeper who had earlier made two quality stops from Stoch and Vittek.