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Tim Krul taunts Giancarlo Gonzalez during shootout (Video)

Tim Krul Giancarlo Gonzalez

Tim Krul sure was feeling himself during the Netherlands’ shootout against Costa Rica in the quarterfinals of the World Cup on Saturday.

Krul, who plays goalie for Newcastle, came on as a substitute for Jasper Cillessen after extra time. He allowed the first penalty kick for a goal, but he saved the second and was really feeling confident. He decided to get in the face of Giancarlo Gonzalez and give him a taste of the Mutumbo finger wag prior to his attempt. Gonzalez converted the PK for a goal, though Krul did guess the right direction.

Krul stopped two of the five attempts by Costa Rica, while the Dutch made their first four attempts to get the win.

Krul even did the same thing to Celso Borges prior to his attempt. He called Borges by name and gave him the “I got my eye on you look”:

Tim Krul Celso Borges

The Netherlands absolutely dominated the match, so it was only right that they won. They had 20 shots on goal compared to just 6 for Costa Rica. Next round against Argentina will be a much tougher challenge.

All 16 of Tim Howard’s saves in the same awesome GIF

Tim Howard savesStill not over Tim Howard’s awesome performance for the US against Belgium in the World Cup? Neither are we.

Take a look at this awesome GIF created by Yahoo! Sports showing all 16 of Howard’s saves at the same time.

Also see: Things Tim Howard could save meme is fantastic
Also see: Highlight video of all of Howard’s saves

If you liked that Tim Howard GIF, then you’ll also love this GIF of Miguel Cabrera hitting home runs and Yu Darvish pitching to Albert Pujols.

Gonzalo Higuain scores goal on volley (Video)

Gonzalo-Higuain-goalArgentina jumped out to a very early lead against Belgium on Saturday. Believe it or not, Lionel Messi had nothing to do with the goal. Gonzalo Higuain had the honors.

Belgium got a bit unlucky, as Argentina midfielder Angel Di Maria was looking to make a through pass elsewhere when the ball deflected directly to Higuain. While the pass was unintentional, that doesn’t make the finish any less impressive. Higuain ripped a perfect shot on a volley as the ball bounced right to him.

If players other than Messi continue to get involved for Argentina, they will be extremely difficult to beat.

GIF via Complex Sports

Landon Donovan on Jurgen Klinsmann criticism: I was being honest

Landon Donovan

Landon Donovan was given the chance to backtrack on his criticism of US Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann, but instead he doubled down.

The LA Galaxy forward was interviewed following his team’s 2-2 tie with the Portland Timbers Friday and asked if he wanted to clarify his comments aka retract them or backtrack. Donovan opted to stand by his remarks.

“I think it’s time to move on,” said Donovan in an interviewed that aired on NBC Sports. “I feel an obligation always to be honest in my life. A lot of times that comes off in different ways. I see a lot of people can perceive that as bitter and having an ax to grind, but I’ve always been honest. When I have a good day, I tell you. When I have a bad day, I tell you. When other people are good or bad, I tell you.

“I’m always going to be honest. People like it or they don’t, but I gotta be honest.”

Donovan was critical of Klinsmann in an interview with MLSsoccer.com during the week. He said he thought the players did well and implied the coaching was bad.

[Also see: Felix Magath rips Landon Donovan via Facebook, calls him mediocre]

Many have felt that Donovan’s criticism of the coaching was motivated by his bitterness over being cut from the national team prior to the World Cup. Donovan continues to insist that is not the case.

Felix Magath rips Landon Donovan via Facebook, calls him mediocre

Landon DonovanFulham manager and former German national team player Felix Magath ripped Landon Donovan via Facebook on Friday for being critical of Jurgen Klinsmann and the US National Team.

Magath wrote the message in his native German, but the translation indicates he was praiseworthy of the job Klinsmann did.

Here’s a Google translation of his comments:

Jürgen Klinsmann and the United States have earned their World Cup performance the respect of the football world. How to order now comes a mediocre player with a plaintive interview and false claims therefore, denounces the work of the coach. The player Landon Donovan at Bayern was once considered unsuitable for the second team, but now leads the talking. I find such behavior unspeakable, unworthy of a national player.

Magath was referring to Donovan’s loan to German power Bayern Munich, which only lasted three months before the club decided not to extend his loan.

Donovan has been critical of Klinsmann since being left off the 23-man national team for the World Cup, which would have marked his fourth time competing in the tournament. He specifically pointed to the coaching as the reason for the team’s struggles.

“I thought the guys did everything they could, they did everything that was asked of them,” Donovan said in an interview with MLSsoccer.com. “But I don’t think we were set up to succeed, and that was tough to watch.

“They were set up in a way that was opposite from what they’ve been the past couple years, which is opening up, passing, attacking – trying to do that. And the team’s been successful that way. Why they decided to switch that in a World Cup, none of us will know.”

Admittedly I’m not a soccer genius here, but I sure felt like the US had an excellent showing at the World Cup. Donovan’s criticism comes across as an extension of personal bitterness rather than justified commentary.

H/T Yahoo! Sports

Neymar suffers fractured vertebrae, out for remainder of World Cup

neymar-back-injury-smallAs the host nation for this year’s World Cup, and one of the great soccer nations, the pressure for Brazil to lift the trophy at the end of the tournament is immense.

For that to happen, a fully fit squad for manager Luiz Felipe Scolari to choose from would be ideal. After Friday’s quarterfinal match against Colombia that will no longer be the case.

Brazil star Neymar was stretchered off the field after taking a knee to the back from Juan Zúñiga. With one of the game’s brightest young stars in visible pain, the thoughts of many turned to Neymar’s possible availability for Tuesday’s semifinal meeting with Germany.

As it turns out, 22-year-old will not be able to play on Tuesday, or in the final if his country makes it that far. The collision has resulted in a fractured vertebrae and Neymar will be sidelined for the remainder of the World Cup.

Obviously, a huge blow for Brazil as if they are to capture their sixth World Cup championship it will have to be done without their best player. Thankfully, it doesn’t appear surgery will be required and we can only hope Neymar makes a full and speedy recovery.

David Luiz tells fans to applaud crying James Rodriguez (Video)

Colombia may have lost in the quarterfinals of the World Cup to Brazil 2-1, but James Rodriguez certainly made his mark on the tournament as the breakout star.

Rodriguez scored in each of Colombia’s matches, including a goal on a penalty kick to put Colombia on the board Friday. He exited the tournament as the leader for the Golden Boot with six goals.

The Brazilian players were well aware of Rodriguez’s brilliance throughout the tournament and wanted to see him receive the recognition he deserved. As seen in the video at the top, Brazilian captain David Luiz instructed the fans to applaud a crying Rodriguez.

Luiz also consoled young James, and the two traded jerseys.

The look on Rodriguez’s face after the match was heartbreaking, but he has nothing to feel badly about:

James Rodriguez crying

The kid was a stud on the world’s biggest stage and exits as the top player.