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Rediff.com  » Sports » World Cup Quote Hanger: 'What madness, we are in the final'

World Cup Quote Hanger: 'What madness, we are in the final'

July 10, 2014 10:33 IST

World Cup Quote Hanger: 'What madness, we are in the final'

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"I'm proud to be a part of this group," Messi said in a statement posted on his social media pages.

"They are all phenomenons, what a match they played.

"What madness. We are in the final. Let's enjoy it, it is just a little step more."

Argentina reached their first World Cup final in 24 years on Wednesday, beating the Netherlands 4-2 on penalties after the first scoreless semi in the tournament's history, with old foes Germany awaiting them in Sunday's showpiece.

PHOTOS: Romero's heroics guide Argentina into World Cup final

-Complete coverage of the football World Cup

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Image: Lionel Messi of Argentina celebrates defeating the Netherlands in a shootout
Photographs: Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

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'I didn't have the feeling in the second half that we would lose'

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"I didn't have the feeling in the second half that we would lose," said Netherlands manager Louis van Gaal.

"And when it comes to penalties you know it's a lottery. The boys did fantastically (well). Nobody had expected this."

It was also a second semi-final defeat on penalties for the Netherlands who suffered the same fate against Brazil in 1998.

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Image: Head coach Louis van Gaal of the Netherlands speaks to his players
Photographs: Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

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'I wasn't nervous, I was focused. But it must go in and it didn't'

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"When you take one you have to score and that didn't happen, so it wasn't good enough," Vlaar said.

"I would never walk away from my responsibility. I wasn't nervous, I was focused. But it must go in and it didn't.

"It's tough, but that's what sport is about," he added. "It really hurts, a dream which gets put out."

Coach Louis van Gaal was forced to use defender Ron Vlaar as his first penalty taker and he was also left to regret being unable to send on his expert spot-kick saver Tim Krul for the shootout.

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Image: Sergio Romero of Argentina saves the penalty kick of Ron Vlaar of the Netherlands
Photographs: Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

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'I taught Romero how to stop penalties so that hurts'

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‘I taught Romero how to stop penalties so that hurts’

"The penalty series is always a matter of luck," the Dutch coach said. "And, of course, I taught Romero how to stop penalties so that hurts."

Argentina keeper Sergio Romero emerged as his team's hero by saving two of the four Dutch spot-kicks and he is a player Van Gaal knows well.

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Image: Lionel Messi and goalkeeper Sergio Romero of Argentina react after Messi's made penalty kick in a shootout
Photographs: Clive Rose/Getty Images

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'Brazil, get up, dust yourself off and bounce back'

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‘Brazil, get up, dust yourself off and bounce back’

"I'm immensely sorry for all of us, our fans and players," she tweeted. "But let's not let ourselves give up. Brazil, get up, dust yourself off and bounce back."

PHOTOS: Germany pump seven past hosts Brazil, make eighth final

Brazil President Dilma Rousseff took to social media to express her disappointment to a country reeling from the loss after spending more than $11 billion on hosting the tournament.


Image: Brazil fans react as they watch their 2014 World Cup semi-finals against Germany on a street in Rio de Janeiro on Tuesday
Photographs: Jorge Silva/Reuters

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