Holland: Cillessen; Janmaat, Blind, Vlaar, Wijnaldum, De Vrij; Martins Indi, Fer, Sneijder; Robben, Van Persie.
Nigel De Jong will miss the remainder of the tournament due to injury.
Costa Rica: Keylor Navas; Y. Tejeda, Giancarlo Gonzalez, Acosta, Michael Umana; Junior Diaz, Gamboa; B. Ruiz, Borges, Bolaños; Joel Campbell.
Oscar Duarte will miss out due to suspension.
Holland and Costa Rica will meet in Salvador on Saturday to conclude the World Cup quarter-finals.
Costa Rica is undoubtedly the Cinderella of this tournament, having emerged from the Group of Death, beating Italy and Uruguay in the process and holding England to a goalless draw. Los Ticos were hungry for more, when they faced Greece in the Round of 16, and despite being down to 10 men, managed to oust the former European champions on penalty kicks, and shock the entire football world.
It may be a whole different story when the Oranje challenge Jorge Luis Pinto’s side on Saturday, but the Dutch have shown they are vulnerable as well, playing on a level far below the splendid display against Spain in the beginning of the tournament.
Following the group stage, Luis van Gaal’s men faced Mexico in the Round of 16, which they eventually won out, having trailed one goal behind until the 88th minute. Wesley Sneijder put Oranje back on the board after a wonderful shot from outside the box, and a Klaas Jan-Huntelaar completed the comeback scoring the contentious penalty won by Arjen Robben after the Bayern man included some theatrics inside the Mexican box.
Holland will need to rediscover their form, and can consider themselves lucky to have gotten past Mexico, despite having dominated almost the entire game. A repeat of last Sunday’s performance will not suffice against a fearless attacking Costa Rican side, even against teams superior in quality – at least on paper.
101GG Prediction: Holland 0 – Costa Rica 1
Some essential stats and facts to help with online betting:
Holland have won 10 of their last 11 World Cup matches, with the only blip in this run being their 2010 final defeat against Spain.
Costa Rica are unbeaten in four World Cup games for the very first time (W2 D2).
Los Ticos became the first CONCACAF team since the USA in 2002 to reach the quarter-final phase of the World Cup.
This will be the first ever meeting between the Holland and Costa Rica.
Holland have now turned their last four World Cup games in which they fell behind in regular time (90 mins, not inc. ET) into victories.
Seven different players have scored for Holland at this World Cup.
Holland have never lost to a CONCACAF team at the World Cup (W1 D1, both against Mexico).
Costa Rica have beaten just one European side in their last seven encounters with teams from that continent, though this
did come against Italy earlier in the World Cup (D3 L3).
Los Ticos have scored in all but one of their nine World Cup matches against teams from Europe, failing to score against England earlier in the tournament.
Wesley Sneijder has scored five goals in his last five World Cup knockout matches for the Netherlands.
Sneijder has played more World Cup games than any other Dutchman (15).
Holland have failed to keep a clean sheet in their last 11 World Cup knockout games, last keeping a shutout against Ireland in 1994.
Bryan Ruiz scored with Costa Rica’s only shot on target in the match against Greece.
Keylor Navas has saved 87.5% of the shots he’s faced at the World Cup so far, making 14 saves.