Players refused first penalty - Van Gaal

Comment on this story
iol spt july10 Van Gaal Reuters Louis van Gaal has revealed two Dutch players refused to step up to take the first penalty in their semi-final shoot-out loss to Argentina. Photo by: Sergio Moraes/Reuters

The Hague – Netherlands coach Louis van Gaal has revealed two of his players refused to step up to take the first penalty in Wednesday's 4-2 World Cup semi-final shoot-out loss to Argentina.

The ill-fated honour eventually fell to defender Ron Vlaar, whose effort was saved by Argentina keeper Sergio Romero.

“I asked two players ahead of Vlaar to take the first penalty,” van Gaal told Dutch news agency ANP.

“They refused. Vlaar in my view was our best player. Unfortunately he didn't score,” the Manchester United-bound coach added.

Unlike in the quarter-finals against Costa Rica, the Dutch fell down in the penalty shootout, with both Vlaar – who played a brilliant game until then – and veteran Wesley Sneijder failing to score against Romero.

“Our penalties against Costa Rica were incredible. That should have given us confidence,” said van Gaal.

“You have to maximise the first penalty shot,” he added.

Van Gaal said he would have brought in replacement goalkeeper Tim Krul, who faced the penalties shootout and saved the day against Costa Rica, to take over from regular goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen.

“But I've already used my three substitutes at that time.”

“In the end Romero stopped two penalties,” he said.

Argentina face Germany in sunday's final while van Gaal's Holland take on Brazil in the third place play-off 24 hours earlier. – Sapa-AFP



sign up
 
 

Comment Guidelines



  1. Please read our comment guidelines.
  2. Login and register, if you haven’ t already.
  3. Write your comment in the block below and click (Post As)
  4. Has a comment offended you? Hover your mouse over the comment and wait until a small triangle appears on the right-hand side. Click triangle () and select "Flag as inappropriate". Our moderators will take action if need be.