Foul or Flop? Mexico Lose a Heartbreaker

posted in: Soccer | 0

So was Arjen Robben of the Netherlands fouled in the box, leading to the winning penalty kick in stoppage time, or did Arjen Robben take a dive?

How about both? Clearly the Mexican defender, Rafa Marquez, comes in late, and makes contact with Robben. That is a foul, no question about it. Now was there enough contact to warrant Robben’s flight through the air like he was being spit out by Godzilla? Obviously, no. So in the end I’m OK with the call, and I’m OK with the internet mocking Robben for the diver that he is.

Now that Mexico has been eliminated though, let’s say a kind word about their coach, Miguel Herrera. Recall last year when Mexico was on the verge of not qualifying at all for this World Cup. They were an absolute mess when Herrera took over, needing the US, of all teams, to beat Panama just to get to the playoff against New Zealand for a chance to get to Brazil. Somehow, he managed to get that team out of the group stage and into the final 16, with a glorious draw against the home team in the mix. That’s good coaching, plain and simple. Plus, he’s always entertaining to watch!

Meanwhile, in the other round of 16 match, it was Costa Rica surviving. Down to 10 men, and after another stoppage time equalizer by Greece seemed to break their hearts, they managed to keep the game a draw and take it to PK’s, where they went 5 for 5 and move on to face the Netherlands. Amazing results for Costa Rica!

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