Argentina claimed a dramatic 4-3 penalty shootout victory over Netherlands on Friday to claim a spot in the World Cup semifinals, but the match will be remembered for the 18 yellow cards and one red dished out by Spanish referee Antonio Mateu Lahoz to set a record.
In a thrilling match, after going 2-0 ahead through Lionel Messi’s goal and assist, Argentina threw away their lead in a late collapse in regulation time. Netherlands equalised in the 11th minute of second-half stoppage time as Wout Weghorst netted when midfielder Teun Koopmeiners stepped up to take a free kick on the edge of the box before sliding a pass under the wall for the striker to slot home.
Argentina goalkeeper Emiliano Martínez saved two attempts in the shootout, as Lautaro Martinez scored the clinching penalty, but tensions boiled over as the teams clashed repeatedly throughout in what has been termed the “Battle of Lusail.”
At one point Leandro Paredes blasted the ball in the direction of the Netherlands bench, before Dutch captain Virgil van Dijk responded by knocking Paredes to the ground. Defender Denzel Dumfries was handed two yellow cards in quick succession during the penalty shootout.
In total, 15 players on the field received a card — a World Cup record.
“I don’t want to talk about the referee because you can’t be honest,” Messi, who confronted Netherlands boss Louis van Gaal after the match, told Argentine TV. “If you talk they sanction you; FIFA must think about it, they can’t put a referee who isn’t up to the task for these instances.”
Full list of yellow cards from Netherlands vs. Argentina:
– Walter Samuel (31′) – Argentina coaching staff
– Jurrien Timber (43′)
– Marcos Acuna (43′)
– Cristian Romero (45′)
– Wout Weghorst (45+2′)
– Memphis Depay (76′)
– Lisandro Martinez (76′)
– Steven Berghuis (88′)
– Leandro Paredes (89′)
– Lionel Scaloni (90′) – Argentina manager
– Lionel Messi (90+10′)
– Nicolas Otamendi (90+12′)
– Steven Bergwijn (91′) – ET
– Gonzalo Montiel (109′) – ET
– German Pezzella (112′) – ET
– Denzel Dumfries (128′) – Penalty shootout
– Denzel Dumfries (129′) – Penalty shootout (2nd yellow = red)
– Noa Lang (129′) – Penalty shootout