Sunday's World Cup action brought us the end of the road for Mexico and Greece, Costa Rica making history, and corporate social media banter gone wrong.
Last Night's Action
Netherlands 2, Mexico 1 (HIGHLIGHTS) A cruel end of the road for Miguel Herrera's side, as two late goals send Mexico crashing out. Giovanni Dos Santos gave Mexico the lead in the 48th minute, and El Tri attempted to hold off a high-pressure Dutch attack. In the 88th minute, Wesley Sneijder would level the score with a scorching shot, leaving the match looking set for extra time.
But deep into stoppage time, Arjen Robben dribbled his way into the box, and went into a challenge with Mexican anti-hero Rafa Marquez. Marquez stepped on Robben's foot, and his flailing fall to the ground gave the Netherlands a questionable penalty at the death. Klaas-Jan Huntelaar converted the penalty to send the Oranje through to the quarterfinals.
Costa Rica 1, Greece 1 (Costa Rica wins 5-3 on penalties) (HIGHLIGHTS) Costa Rica's best ever World Cup will continue despite having to play for nearly an hour down a man. Bryan Ruiz put the Ticos on the board with a slow rolling shot in the 52nd minute, but when Oscar Duarte earned a second yellow, Greece looked to take advantage. Again, stoppage time heroics were necessary, with Sokratis Papastathopoulos pouncing on a rebound to send the match to extra time and eventually penalties.
Unlike Brazil vs. Chile, this was a clinic in spot kicks, with perfect kick after perfect kick being taken. It took four rounds until the difference maker emerged, as Keylor Navas made a diving save on the attempt from Theofanis Gekas, allowing Costa Rica to prevail. They reach the quarterfinals for the first time ever in their history.
The Plays To Watch
Wesley Sneijder had the best goal from the run of play:
Here's the controversial penalty call with Arjen Robben and Rafa Marquez:
And Keylor Navas was huge all game for Costa Rica, but especially in stopping this penalty:
France vs. Nigeria (12PM ET, ESPN)
France brought the firepower in the group stage, and with Yohan Cabaye back from suspension, should be in full force for today's match with Nigeria. Keep an eye on Karim Benzema, who has nine goals in his last nine appearances for France (including three in three this World Cup). There are rumblings the field at Estadio Nacional is in bad shape, which could affect the match.
Germany vs. Algeria (4PM ET, ESPN)
If you want the favorites on strength of squad, you take Germany. Die Mannschaft has made the quarterfinals in sixteen of their seventeen World Cup appearances. If you want the favorites on narrative, you take Algeria, who are looking to avenge 1982's Disgrace of Gijon. Granted, no one from the 1982 squads are on either team, but who said narratives have to make sense? Lukas Podolski is expected to miss the match with a thigh injury.
What Else Is Going On?
Mexico's Miguel Herrera took out his frustrations for losing on the referee. "I hope they have a look at what happened and that this gentleman goes home just like we are," vented Herrera.
The Greeks were due a World Cup bonus, but they've got a better idea: they just want a training center.
The referee for Belgium vs. USA has been selected; Algerian Djamel Haimoudi will be the man in the middle on Tuesday. Hope he's forgotten about Landon Donovan's goal in 2010.
We had a hunch that fans of the Netherlands are a particular breed of crazy, but this FIFA TV video documenting a group of them that drove from NYC down to Brazil confirms it.
Algeria's coach is sick of media questions about Ramadan.
Lastly: right after Netherlands knocked out Mexico, Royal Dutch Airlines tweeted a photoshopped departure sign with a sombrero and mustache icon, captioned "Adios Amigos!". It went over as well as you might expect.