At the expense of Australia and the United States, two titans of football will meet for a heavyweight quarter-final bout in the 2022 World Cup.
Argentina, courtesy of goals from Lionel Messi and Julian Alvarez, edged past the spirited Socceroos to earn a 2-1 victory while strikes from Memphis Depay, Daley Blind and Denzel Dumfries gave the Netherlands a comfortable enough 3-1 triumph over the USMNT in the round of 16.
An eye-capturing contest carrying World Cup history between La Albiceleste and Die Oranje now awaits in the last eight, but how have the two nations fared against each other previously?
These two famous footballing nations have met just nine times in the past, with the Netherlands boasting the better numbers. The Europeans have won four of those nine encounters against Argentina while the South Americans have been triumphant three times, with two draws.
Die Oranje enjoyed early success against the Argentines, winning their first ever meeting – a friendly just prior to the 1974 World Cup – 4-1. When it came to the actual tournament, the two sides met in the second round with the Netherlands enjoying an even more emphatic 4-0 victory over La Albiceleste on their way to the final.
World Cup bragging rights between the two nations would be firmly handed over to Argentina four years later, however. The two sides’ next encounter came in the 1978 World Cup final, in which the South American outfit ran out 3-1 winners after extra time to earn their first global triumph and condemn the eternal bridesmaids to their second of three World Cup final defeats.
The Netherlands would go on to fall to a penalty-shootout defeat to Argentina in a commemorative match to mark the 75th anniversary of FIFA in 1979, although did knock them out of the 1998 World Cup with a 2-1 quarter-final victory – an omen, perhaps?
After that, a 1-1 draw and a 1-0 Netherlands win in international friendlies set up two more World Cup meetings – the two sides’ most recent clashes.
In 2006, the countries couldn’t be separated as they played out a 0-0 draw in the group stage (both progressed with seven points). Argentina relied on a penalty shootout to knock the Dutch out of the 2014 World Cup at the semi-final stage before losing in the final.
Netherlands vs Argentina H2H record
As you’ve gathered, over half of the meetings between the Netherlands and Argentina have happened at the World Cup. While the numbers are all square – both sides have won two against the other at football’s premier event, with one draw – Argentina certainly boast the more pleasant memories.
Die Oranje can cast their minds back to victories in 1974, when a 4-0 win set them up for their first World Cup final loss, and 1998, when – more positively – the two countries’ only previous quarter-final meeting ended in the Netherlands’ favour.
Apart from the aforementioned 0-0 draw in Germany, the other encounters between these two giants of football have ended in the Argentines’ favour.
2014 brought with it a semi-final victory courtesy of a 4-2 penalty-shootout win but it will be memories of 1978, when La Albiceleste earned their maiden World Cup triumph courtesy of a 3-1 final triumph over the Dutch, that will particularly spur the country’s current generation on.
There have been more than a few legendary figures to have played in this fixture, with several icons getting on the scoresheet.
While the likes of Dennis Bergkamp, Patrick Kluivert, Gabriel Batistuta and Edgar Davids have all netted in this match-up over the years, however, only two players have managed to bag two.
Mario Kempes quite memorably got himself a brace in the 1978 World Cup final to break Dutch hearts in that 3-1 triumph while, on the other side, the great Johan Cruyff is the only other player to score twice in this fixture, with both of his goals coming in the Netherlands’ 4-0 thrashing over Argentina in the 1974 World Cup.
It would be rude not to mention that Pleun Strick also found the net twice in this fixture, with his strikes both coming in the two nations’ first ever encounter – one, however, came at the wrong end.