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Netherlands pulls off incredible comeback to dispatch Mexico

GeorginioWijnaldumNetherlands1-MexicoAndresGuardadoWorldCup2014 (Getty)


In a World Cup ripe with memorable games, the Netherlands raised the bar on Sunday in Fortaleza, pulling of an unlikely comeback down a goal in the waning moments against Mexico.

Mere minutes from advancing to its third World Cup quarterfinal, El Tri was dealt a devastating blow by the Dutch as they tallied twice after the 88th minute to secure a 2-1 victory.

First came Wesley Sneijder with the equalizer just minutes from full time after Klaas-Jan Huntelaar headed it back into the center of the box off a right side corner. Sneijder was left inexplicably unmarked to run on and send a laser beam just inside the left post.

Heartbreak struck for the Mexicans in the second minute of second-half stoppage time as Arjen Robben dribbled in from the end line right of goal and was tripped up by Mexico captain Rafa Marquez to draw a penalty.

Huntelaar stepped to the spot and finished confidently into the lower left corner for the winner in the 94th minute as Guillermo Ochoa (2 saves) went diving in the other direction.

It’s hard to put the blame on Ochoa, who would have been hard-pressed to stop either goal. He had only allowed one goal in three Group Stage matches.

Opposite him, Dutch keeper Jasper Cillessen had a few shaky moments, but came up with five saves to emerge as the winning goalie in a game that featured 15 shots on frame.

Mexico went ahead in the 48th minute on a sensational strike by Giovani Dos Santos.

Following a scoreless first half, Dos Santos broke the game open with a strike from long distance, taking possession 30 yards out and getting a shot off despite three Dutch defenders close by. Dos Santos sent an incredible volley across his body and just inside the right post to make it a 1-0 lead.

The Netherlands, World Cup finalists in 2010, will move on to face the winner of Sunday afternoon’s game between Costa Rica and Greece.

The high-flying Dutch have won all four of their World Cup games, scoring multiple goals in each of them.

Despite the stunning ending, it didn’t always look like fortune would favor the Netherlands. On a day in which the temperature surpassed 100 degrees on the field, the Dutch were dealt an early blow when the influential Nigel de Jong had to sub off in the ninth minute with an undisclosed ailment.

Mexico squandered a strong opportunity in the 17th minute when they passed it around the box. The play culminated with Héctor Herrera sidestepping right and sending a low ball just barely left of the post. Herrera went down in the box three minutes later amid two defenders, but had to settle for a corner.

Carlos Salcido tested Cillessen in the 24th minute with a long-range try from the edge of the attacking third as El Tri sought to put the pressure on.

The Netherlands had a chance of its own three minutes later as Stefan de Vrij played a ball over the top into Robin Van Persie behind the Mexican back line. Van Persie was able to bring the ball down, but couldn’t manage a quality attempt, skying it wide right.

Dos Santos put a shot on target from right of goal in the 42nd minute, but like Van Persie, was doomed by a challenging angle as his shot proved an easy save for Cilleson.

The Dutch had their best early chance just seconds before halftime as Van Persie split the defense to play Robben through into the box, but the Bayern Munich man went down with no foul called.

Early out of the break, Dos Santos struck for his first international goal since 2012, sending Mexico in front for the next 40 minutes.

Ochoa helped preserve that 1-0 lead with the save of the match in the 57th minute, denying de Vrij point blank after he had gotten onto the end of Robben’s right side service. The Mexico keeper came up big once more in the 74th minute, cutting off the angle on Robben’s dangerous try from right of goal.

Louis van Gaal’s decision to sub on Huntelaar for Van Persie in the 76th minute proved a stroke of genius. Mexico made a similar move a minute earlier, bringing on Javier Hernández for Oribe Peralta.


  1. Refs never have the balls to call it this way but it was a…

    …penalty AND a dive. Award the penalty and give Robben a yellow card. What should be changed is add video replays of ALL goals (automatically) and the ref should have the discretion (and balls) after review to give a straight red for particularly heinous penalty area dives.

    Just MHO of course.

  2. I am not a fan of Mexico’s soccer organization at all. That being said they were screwed. Yes they stopped playing which led to the tying goal, which led to the horrible call. Mexico and their coach can take the blame for that. However FIFA is a joke. If they really wanted to avoid such controversies moving forward every penalty call in they box should be a video review before awarding a penalty kick. If the penalty was reviewed and it showed that Robben was trying to influence the call after Raffa accidentally stepped on his foot then both should receive a yellow card. Raffa wasn’t trying to foul but missed the ball and if reviewed would be deemed incidental and a yellow card given only. Robben would receive the yellow for unsportsmanlike conduct. If the Review showed intent and the foul actually caused Robben to go down then the penalty kick is given. FIFA needs to get with it and start using technology for any questionable calls in the box. There is no way the majority of referees would call that foul. Flopping is killing the sport. However,Mexico is responsible for putting themselves in that situation.

  3. If Rafael steps on Van Persie in the 25th minute we’d all say it was a foul, therefore it’s a foul in 90 minute. This swallow the whistle in the final minutes is ridiculous, every minute of a game is as important as the last. Should Cameron have been able to drag down the Portuguese player because it was the last 15 seconds. Should the Saurez handball not count because it was at the end of the game in 2010. He was beaten and he left his foot in its a foul even if Robben is a tool.

  4. Had Mexico put someone on the back post on corners, there wouldn’t be a Sneijder wonder strike to discuss. Atletico Madrid did the same late in the Champions League final– same result. Mexico gets to go home and Atletico gets to watch their cross-town rivals hoist a cup. Genius guys. Pure genius. Simeone and Herrara must be exchanging ideas on set pieces.

  5. From where the ref was situated rafas foot appeared to catch Robben. It was a gamble by Marquez to stick a foot out and he lost. I think Mexico is lucky to not have fouled Robben at the end of the second half (also would have been a penalty).

    FIFAs system for creating the groups really messed up in this WC. Mexico should be playing holland in a later round and chile should have also in a later round played a team like Brazil. Heavy hitters playing each other in a few games while the other match had Greece v cr. FIFAs ranking system is poor when they rank Switzerland and Uruguay so high.

    • It’s not FIFA’s fault that CR eliminated ENG and ITA while finishing in front of URU. That group alone screwed up a lot of brackets.

      • I agree with that. I’m just saying its a shame that chile v Brazil couldn’t be a quarter final game or later and the same goes for Mexico v holland. We will be left with quality teams after this round but I felt like the tourney lost some of its best teams in Mexico and chile too soon.

        Oh and Uruguay is very pedestrian without Suarez. Not sure why they were ranked so high to begin with.

      • Mexico qualified as the 4th team from the 4th best region and hasn’t made it past the round of 16 in 5 straight cups going into this year. How does that form and history justify a top 8 in the world seed? Do you want to take a week off between rounds to reseeed and allow rest for teams who played late like US and Germany?

      • “Oh and Uruguay is very pedestrian without Suarez. Not sure why they were ranked so high to begin with.”

        Because Suarez was on their team when they were ranked.

  6. in theory to ‘just keep attacking’ makes sense

    but, Mexico expended a ton of energy in the first half and throughout the game high pressing. the question was asked in the game thread can Mexico sustain this? not quite as it turned out. it was a risk to play that way in those conditions. Herrera got so much right but just missed on this one imo

  7. FIFA is Rigged they have a list of teams they deem will reach the top and they help them along the way with calls.
    What happened to Mexico vs. Netherlands today is clear proof the referee stole the game from them…Why not let them play into OT??? because they were afraid they might bounce back and that powerful Netherlands would not reach the final stages to play Brazil to make this world cup seem like the powerful teams made it to the top.
    The call is pityfull with just a couple of minutes left in the game and a questionable dive you never give a penalty in moents like that and take the game away from a fair match…BUT THEY DID !
    Mexico was robbed and on every replay it is clear this was not a warranted penalty shot…If anything in those crucial moments you let the teams play it out and stop making FIFA referees the center of the stage. F YOU FIFA !

    • you are so sad. You lost and now deal with it. At first you should think about the foul at the end of the first half. When two maxican players kicked agains robbens legs. and the ref did not give the penalty.

      you are just talking shit. Mexico was playing like shit after the first goal. And the coach is a fucking joke in the rest of the world.

    • What? If it was rigged, they would have awarded the first penalty. Listen, I was cheering Mexico, but Rafa committed a foolish foul and Robben embellished to get attention. People are forgetting that Rafa STEPPED on Robben. You know he goes down easily and cuts to his left ALL THE time and you (Rafa) had help behind you. Was a soft foul? Yes, but it was still a foul. Again, Mexico got away with a foul earlier that game that should have been a penalty. It was a little like the Costa Rica game where the ref wouldn’t give Costa Rica a call when Greece got away with stuff.

  8. Robben is a thug and a disgraceful soccer player. He did a multitude of things on that play including dragging his foot to draw a little contact, and absolutely throwing himself with flailing arms onto the ground to get the call.

    Dive. Dive. Dive. Pitiful stuff.

      • You never decide a game like that for the players…Netherlands could have won this one without controversy but now they will be remembered as the team that was saved by a call…
        I am of the belief that that late in the game it better be a good hard foul if you are going to award a team an automatic win with penalty shot…since that is pretty much what it turns out to be.
        I don’t care if you are a Netherlands fan, you know you prefer a clean win over this fucking fiasco that happened today. SHAME ON FIFA and the REF. And you for thinking it was the right thing to do which was not !

      • The players did decide the game. Marquez committed a foul that gave up a penalty. Was it a small one? Yes, but it was still a foul. If you want things called differently based on where or when the incident’s occur, I can assure you that you are in the minority of players, spectators and officials. The first two of those crave consistency and the latter always strives to give it.

      • footage has been reviewed and there is not contact by Marquez. Marquez still claims that he did not touch him. I bet that if a butterfly had stepped on his foot, Robben would had acted as if hit by lightning nevertheless. I was a dive and the whole world saw it.

      • agree completely. Why should this game be decided on such a soft foul if there even was one?! Let the players play.

      • Why does Mexico hold out Javier Hernández Balcázar “Chicarito” until the last 10 minutes? That kid is great. Does he have an injury or what?

      • For what was at stake on this game you are right. As far as for the justice-was-done-argument for the first penalty done to roben (a penalty was also done to H Herrera when he was hit by a reckless kick on the face in the penalty area and not called ), there is a difference when you are awarded a penalty in the first half vs a penalty in the last three minutes of the game. In the first you have time to regroup and attack, but you are against a penalty on the last three minute of the game, you are annihilated. This ref determined the outcome of this game by giving the victory to the Dutch in a silver plate.

  9. It’s amazing to see all the folks giving Rafa the benefit of the doubt … Red Cards for headbutting, PK for a foul in the box …I see a trend

  10. The game changed with Herrera took Gio Dos Santos off. Mexico had the better play even after the goal was scored, but taking Gio off at the 60th minute really hurt Mexico’s ability to keep possession offensively, and thus they were on the back foot the rest of the way. This was a tactical change made way too quickly. While I give Herrera a ton of credit for reviving el tri’s fortunes, his tactics cost them the game today.

    Oh, and it was a PK IMHO. Yeah, he embellished it, but contact cause the dive.

  11. I’ll say it here again Between Suarez and Robben I definitely prefer suarez as a player. I agree that Suarez needs immediate professional help. but as far as diving goes Robben the passive aggressive one is …UN ASCO. I seem to hate passive aggressive ones even more. Subtle little bastard cheats are more dangerous in this society we live in. as for Suarez what is worse ? someone who just bites someone or players that go to injure someones legs to end their careers….(Roy Keane) cough cough. So please …some of you hypocrites in Europe and the white Ann Coulter echelon of this world….stop picking on Suarez or any of the latin american players….please? thank yooooou

    • You said you are white and now I doubt it. But if you are, you should be going to the same treatment as Suarez, because self hatred is a far more disturbing disorder. You seem a little too emotional about this WC thing.

      • I am half white I look white because in South America we have that a lot . Have you been to South America Bro? have you seen players like Gabriel Heinze, De Michelis, coaches like pellegrini?…bro? we are partly white you need to travel more…My little bro. ignorance and classifying people is even worse then me and Suarez. I am not racist and If im partly White it doesn’t mean I have a white mind so get off my case and stop answering back…okay bro?….thaaank yooooouu …

      • White is a skin color in which the majority of Latin Americans are. So It’s better to use the term Anglo or Anglo Caucasian… I simply use WASP to describe “Caucasians” Americans. The ones who are not sure of their ethnicity.

        I see what you’re saying Robert. But you won’t have any luck in most forums with Suarez. I personally believe it was too harsh of a punishment. I’ve said it, and continue to say it, if anyone deserved to get bitten, it was Chiellini lol I hate that tool

      • Not all white Americans are protestant, or even affiliated with any religion, so WASP isn’t all that accurate. Maybe just WAS.

      • Hmm, Chiellini is a “tool” who, in regards to Suarez’s punishment, had the decency to state:

        “Now inside me there’s no feelings of joy, revenge or anger against Suarez for an incident that happened on the pitch and that’s done. There only remain the anger and the disappointment about the match.

        “At the moment my only thought is for Luis and his family, because they will face a very difficult period.

        “I have always considered unequivocal the disciplinary interventions by the competent bodies, but at the same time I believe that the proposed formula is excessive. I sincerely hope that he will be allowed, at least, to stay close to his team mates during the games because such a ban is really alienating for a player.”

    • This kind of stuff is sad and embarrassing. Race has nothing to do with this. You can’t bite people. Sure, Roy Keane was a thug and a disgrace too. What’s that have to do with Suarez?

    • When is biting someone ever ok in football? And who are you talking to? You really think anyone in agreement with Ann Coulter’s view of soccer reads this web site?

  12. Thought Mexico deserved to win by playing the better football. Sneijder’s goal, while undeserved on run of play, was well taken. The penalty was a dive but Marquez put his leg in, so there’s always a risk when you do that. I think a no-call and extra time would have been the better way to handle it, but in the end Mexico should have probably scored an insurance goal or two while they were up.

    Would have been an epic semifinal if US and Mexico had somehow made it to semis tho : )

      • In MHO, I agreed with the first non-call and the believe the second was a bad-call because of the swan dive of Robben (who should have gotten a yellow card for it). If this type of bad referee decision is supported, then in future WC games we will have swan dives all over the penalty area. Additionally, FIFA should change the rules so that even if there is a foul in the penalty area but the offensive player has NO chance of scoring (like Robben) then treat it just like any other penalty situation. The referee could also give a yellow card to the defender as a punishment but not penalize the entire team Otherwise the swan diving in the penalty area (or anywhere else on the field) will ONLY INCREASE!

      • Robben dives, but he first non-call was a penalty and this was a penalty as well (technically) because he was stepped on. He didn’t dive because PHYSICAL contact did occur by Rafa STEPPING on his foot as he slipped. Now, would I have called it, no, but I called hard fouls in my day.

        Second, your yellow card non-penalty in box rule change is utterly ridiculous because if you want to avoid that, foul him outside the box. You can score from ANYWHERE in the penalty box except from the direct sides of the goal, so what you are saying that a yellow card is not a penalty if you are with 1 year of the touchline in the penalty area???

        Were they soft fouls? Yes. Were they technically legal? Yes (like it or not). If I referred it, would I have called them, 1st yes, 2nd no, but cannot blame a ref if he calls something that the laws allow him to call.

      • Very pour logic on your part. Simply because you can score from any place in the penalty box does not mean that it is likely you will score. The likelihood of scoring is not only a function of where you are but it is a function of many other factors. In this case, because Robin had irretrievably kicked the ball towards the Mexican defense prior to being contacted by Marquez ,it was extremely unlikely that he would score. In fact, the reason he decided to go down is that he knew that the ball was irretrievable. Earlier he was hit harder but did not choose to go down because at that point in time he thought he could actually score.

      • I think you mean “very poor”. Anyway, I think you misread what I wrote. One could score from anywhere in the box that was NOT within 1 yard of the touchline. Are you likely to score from another place in the box if there are 3 defenders standing with 2 feet of you? No. However, there is a much greater likelihood than if you were 35 yards outside the box. Now, one could increase this likelihood of scoring by dribbling around defenders in your way or holding the ball until a teammate comes into a more open position or passing the ball into open space etc.

        That is the whole purpose of the rule (from what I remember); increase scoring opportunities by decreasing hard-fouling in the area and promoting attacking play. To take away the threat of a PK because someone isn’t likely to score from their fouled position would reduce attacking play and change the PURPOSE of the law. In the 3 defender example I mentioned, the defenders could hack the guy down with professional fouls w/o the threat of the PK even though the player could have created a likely scoring opportunity. If you think it’s cheap to get a PK in the box, then stop them before the get in the box.

        Btw, Robben DID go down earlier (twice) in a series of consecutive fouls on the same play near the top of the box, but only the 2nd one was a valid foul, but was not called.

      • The one Robben admitted to and apologized for diving after the game? Can’t there be a retroactive card awarded when the cheater admits it? Better yet, Robben should have to spend the next 24 hour with the Mexican fans ho will no doubt show their appreciation for his post game honesty

    • What are you talking about with this “deserved to win” BS? Mexico – slightly – had the better of play up until they scored the goal. After that, they went into a shell and only threatened the Dutch goal once more. By the time the Dutch scored 8a had made several excellent saves.

      • It was even until the Mexico goal at which point they completely stopped trying to score a second. There’s no deserving to win until the final whistle blows, as the USMNT learned against Portugal.

  13. As a Red.Bulls.and USMNT fan I am beyond giddy that it was Marquez that give away the penalty that eliminated Mexico from the World Cup. I have to say, though, Jennifer Grey was terrific in goal. Best keeper of the tournament IMO

      • P*to…..and even if you can somehow claim it isn’t homophobic, it is certainly vulgar and civilized people shouldn’t be screaming it at the top of their lungs over and over again.

      • Fair enough. But there is a difference between having a few people saying things that they shouldn’t and having everybody doing it, and then celebrating the fact that they do it. As far as I can tell the P*to chant appears to be the only reliable vulgarity at the World Cup.

      • this is the world’s game, and the rest of the world is not pc at all……so just get over it,

  14. Mexico should have continued to attack and looked for a second goal.
    But – I thought it was a very soft penalty, and one that should not have been awarded at that late stage of the game. It would have been a much more just result if the game had gone to overtime.
    I am 100% a USA fan to the death – but I would have loved to see a Mexico USA semi-final!
    Initial reaction was, that was just plain wrong. Robben should have been yellow carded for diving in the box, and the game should have gone to overtime. Mexico was robbed! Rob-benned!
    Highway robbery. The ref should not be the star of the show.
    Disgusted for all of my Mexican relatives.

    • The first one was a Robben dive. The actual penalty was not a dive. Marquez stepped on Robben’s foot as he was going for the ball.

      • Had Mexico continued to take the game to the Dutch instead of letting them walk the ball down field to the penalty area, relying on the referee may not have been necessary. I would have loved to see Mexico advance but, if they had to lose I’m glad it was Rafa that was responsible and I’m also glad that De Jong got a little bit of karmic justice as well.

      • +1…
        Rafa’s always gambling with border line fouls in the 18 box…

        he set to slow down Robben after he cut to the inside by leaving his foot out so close to Robben’s.

        he gambled and he lost…

    • Nah fully deserved penalty conceded by that clown Rafa. As a RBNY and USMNT supporter I can’t think of any player in any sport I have less respect for than that coward. Loved to see him giving a way a last minute penalty so his fourth world cup could end just like all his others – in a round of 16 exit.

      • Lalas and Ballick both offered that it was a legit penalty and the also indicated that it was primarily a penalty of accumulation after Rafa had received multiple warnings throughout the match.

        Regardless, at least there will not be massive congestion, vandalism, general lawlessness and public disturbance in the streets of So. Central LA as there were after Mex. succeeded in their previous games.

      • Were they saying that the foul or the misconduct (card) was due to persistent infringement? The latter makes sense, but the former doesn’t.

      • I couldn’t agree with you more. Rafa was a total schmuck, both on and off the pitch, when he was with the Red Bulls.

    • Mexico played well, but the best team won. This was far from a robbery because Ribery was not playing in this game. I know your butt hurts, but you’ll get over it. After all, Mexico will continue to be the best team in CONCACAF. Btw it was a pk and there were two.

      • They play together in Bayern Munich. That’s what they call it aRobbery when they play together.

      • “Mexico will continue to be the best team in CONCACAF.” Seriously? I think we all know who that accolade belongs to — USA. We own Mexico and will continue do so. Dos-a-cero, my friend, until you can prove otherwise.

      • Ah, yes, the expert opinion of someone who thinks Franck Ribery is Dutch . Next, I’ll go ask Gus Johnson what he thinks.

      • The best team in Concacaf doesn’t rely on another team to win its last meaningless qualifier in order to barely make it to the playoff with Oceania’s winner.
        Mexico played well in the world cup but based on their play in the hexagonal, they did not even deserve to be in Brazil.

      • @foooo.. +1, also not to mention that in order to complete qualifications Club America errrr Mexico also had to beg their quitters back into the fold. Might have been simply an emergency act of kindness by their quitters, or maybe there’s a little cash in their coffers. Just wondering is all as I have no proof. Always wondered why they were unable to also get Vela also.

    • It was a penalty. The fact that Robben embellished it is irrelevant. Marquez clearly stepped on Robben’s foot. Dumb play by Marquez — there was no need to do it. Of course, another clear penalty should’ve been awarded to the Dutch at the end of the first half.

      • You are forgetting Robben’s admission to diving in the first half I guess. You call that a clear penalty but it wasn’t. In fact he should have been on a yellow which may have stopped the dive (not a clear penalty at all as it was not a penalty given the flow of play as to what was let go and what was called in the game).
        Idea for these plays is have an immediate review by three refs who review all straight red and all penalty calls not on clear and convincing evidence to overturn but rather as if the play had happened if they were the ref and if two of the three say yes then the play stands and if they say no a mistake then the diving player gets whatever color card was handed out by the ref thus portecting the interpretation of intent or persistent infringment or whatever by the on field ref. Gien how long the players argue with the ref and a PK actually takes there would be no delay in the game that mattered.

      • It was a foul. I was a license referee and coach, and I still go through the FIFA handbook when I not sure about certain things. Did Robben embellish? Yes. Did Rafa make contact with Robben in the box? Yes, he stepped on his foot after Robben had slipped the ball by him. Was it enough to cause to embellished fall? No, but it does not matter. By the letter of the law, a foul can be given. When I was a referee, would I have called it? No, but I used to be a referee to let soft fouls go and only let hard get called. I also wouldn’t call a penalty so late in a game unless it was BLATANT or the knucklehead kept making the same error (even after I warned him).

        That being said, while I think it is hard way to loose, (1) Mexico decided to sit back and defend their too early against a Dutch team that was not looking good and (2) the escaped a penalty in the first half when Robben was definitely fouled. However, his diving reputation hurt him that time, so it wasn’t called, then he blatantly dived later. I think that guy went down 6/7 times

      • i guess we carry our own flag apparently

        3 best nations in CONCACAF for the past decade. huge gulf between the trio and rest of the federation.

      • This is the problem. USA, Mexico, and Costa Rica looked good in this Cup.

        Then there was Honduras.

        And would any other CONCACAF nation have done better than Honduras? No. I keep thinking that Jamaica could get there, but they insist on proving me wrong.

      • Panama, maybe? At the very least they probably wouldn’t have been the nasty hacks that HON was.

      • Panama could have made it had they had keeper. Pinedo, who got his first clean sheet with LA Galaxy last night has given up goals in 10 straight, and is a key reason that Galaxy is languishing near the bottom of the table, in addition to LD not exactly lighting it up either.

      • It appears you neither A) Watch many Galaxy games (Peneido’s been solid, especially considering a dodgy defense on front of him.)

        Nor B) look at the “Games Played” column in the standings. The Galaxy’s PPG would have them in the Playoffs easily…

      • further, Pinedo has always been a strength for Panama. He got the Galaxy gig after another strong Gold Cup, right?

      • Mason: Panama, Honduras, and El Salvador are all essentially equal in my eyes. Each is a threat in CONCACAF competition but never outside that.

        So yeah, I agree with you that Panama “maybe” would have done better than Honduras.

        Then again, if Panama had been there to outdo Honduras, then we wouldn’t have seen Mexico fall to the Netherlands 🙂

  15. Enough of these stupid water breaks. If it is truly a medical necessity then play the games after sunset. Of course it is not necessary, because Copa America has been played for about 100 years in the identical conditions, My guess is that FIFA is using “medical necessity” as a cheap attempt to squeeze in commercials into the telecast.

      • Actually there were commercials on ESPN during the second half water break. I wasn’t too thrilled with that and hope it doesn’t become a trend. I understand the need to re-hydrate in these situations but please no commercials!

    • AlexH: are Copa America matches typically held at the same time of day? FIFA wanted the World Cup matches held in the middle of the day to accommodate viewers in Europe, but acquiesced (a bit) due to the heat.

      My guess is that Copa America matches are typically held in the evening and thus avoid the extreme afternoon temperatures—but it’s only a guess. Do you know the answer?

      • There’s a few variables at play. First is the fact that the temperature in Argentina or Chile (where it is winter) isn’t the same as it is in (for example) Venezuela. Pirlo noted this when he said that there were two tournaments being played in Brazil. Second, as you note, is the time.

        Looking at the last time CA was held in a hot (summer or tropical) location was 2007, in Venezuela. From the looks of it, group stage matches were at 1600, 1800, and 2000. Knockouts were at roughly the same time.

      • Thanks for looking that up.

        That 16:00 time could still be pretty stifling in Venezuela, but by 18:00 and especially 20:00 it would have cooled off considerably.

      • Copa America it’s played in the winter if played in southern SA countries Argentina, Chile, Peru, Bolivia, Paraguay, Uruguay and even southern Brazil…

        Colombia, Ecuador, Venezuela and northern Brazil are hot this time of the year and tend to play mostly late afternoon and evening, no need for early games since they dont have to accommodate overseas audience.

      • as some have mentioned….copa america is played at the same time, but it’s winter down south.
        also, here in chile there have been no commercials during the water breaks…….usa = $$$ at all times.

    • There were commercials in Univision. There had be some type of deal already, Otherwise they wouldn’t have sent for commercials.

      There’s been water breaks in Liga MX for quite some time as well, and they don’t take that long and don’t cut to ads


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