The Netherlands brushed aside Australia in the final Quarter-Final tie this afternoon, to set-up a thrilling last four tie against host nation Brazil on Wednesday. Despite their dominance, they had to wait until stoppage time at the end of the first-half to go in front.
Federici’s drop-kick was collected in the midfield by Heitinga who, with Sneijder and Van Persie, brought the ball forwards, eventually playing it out to the left for Arjen Robben who cut inside and slotted past the ‘keeper thirty seconds past the forty-five minute mark.
Australia came out after the break on the front foot but had their defensive naïvety exposed when they committed too many men forward in search of an equaliser. Arjen Robben had switched to the right and his delightful cross into the six-yard box was met by the head of a diving Robin van Persie for two-nil.
Five minutes later and the Netherlands had sealed the win, though how much Klaas-Jan Huntelaar knew about his goal is debatable. Wesley Sneijder hit a curling shot from the edge of the box that Federici punched straight into Huntelaar’s path and it ricocheted past him and into the back of the net.
Richard Porta hit the crossbar from eight yards out in Australia’s best move of the match, when Emerton headed down Bresciano’s cross, but Australia offered little else all match.
Netherlands comfortably through, but both Arjen Robben and Robin van Persie picked up injuries during the second-half. Robben’s doesn’t appear serious, but Van Persie landed very heavily on his side and may not feature again in the tournament with a hip injury.
FIFA WORLD CUP BRAZIL 2014 MATCH 60: QUARTER-FINAL NETHERLANDS 3-0 AUSTRALIA Robben 45 Van Persie 54 Huntelaar 60 Rio de Janeiro