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Jun 29, 2014

Round of 16 records fall

Two late goals from Klaas-Jan Huntelaar and Wesley Sneijder gave Netherlands a 2-1 victory over Mexico and a spot in the World Cup quarterfinals.

Day 2 of the knockout round provided plenty of drama as UEFA and CONCACAF split their matches, one of which required penalty kicks for the second straight day.

With four matches still to play, this is already the first time in World Cup history with multiple shootouts in the round of 16.

Despite a scoreless first half in each game, five second-half goals were scored (including two in stoppage time). Ninety of the tournament's 145 goals have come after the break.

The Netherlands opened the day with a 2-1 victory over Mexico in heartbreaking fashion for El Tri supporters. Then in the late matchup Greece couldn't finish the job over a 10-man Costa Rica side, who won on penalties. With the United States still to play, CONCACAF could still send two teams to the quarterfinals for the first time in World Cup history.

Here are five storylines from a thrilling day two in the World Cup knockout round:

NetherlandsNetherlands
MexicoMexico
2
1
ESPN3, ESPN FT
Match 51
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The Netherlands stunned Mexico with Wesley Sneijder's 88th-minute tally, the latest equalising goal in his country's World Cup history. Just moments later, Klaas-Jan Huntelaar converted a game-winning penalty for the Dutch. The Netherlands improved to a perfect nine for nine on penalties in World Cup play, the most without a miss or save in World Cup history. The victory was the first time in World Cup knockout stage history a team has been trailing in the 88th minute and won in regulation.


Giovani dos Santos had put Mexico ahead early with his long-range goal (scored from 29.5 yards out). It was the longest World Cup goal scored by Mexico in the past 50 years. However, El Tri could not hold the lead and were eliminated in the round of 16 for the sixth-straight tournament. With Mexico's only appearances in the final eight coming in 1970 and 1986 (both hosted in Mexico), El Tri has still never reached a World Cup quarterfinal on foreign soil.


Giovani dos Santos' goal for Mexico in their second round match versus the Netherlands nearly put El Tri in its first World Cup quarterfinal since 1986.
Giovani dos Santos gave Mexico an early lead over the Netherlands.

In the second match of the day, Costa Rica opened the scoring against Greece with a Brian Ruiz left-footer from 21.6 yards away. It was Costa Rica's longest goal in this tournament and its first from outside the penalty area. Unfortunately for Costa Rica, Oscar Duarte was shown a red card in the 66th minute, the first ejection in Costa Rica's World Cup history. He will miss the quarterfinal match against the Netherlands.

Costa RicaCosta Rica
GreeceGreece
(5) 1
(3) 1
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Match 52
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There was plenty of Greek drama before their elimination as Sokratis Papastathopoulos scored one minute into second-half stoppage time, the latest equalising goal in the round of 16 in World Cup history. With a 1-1 finish in regulation, both teams moved to extra time for the first time in their respective World Cup histories. After a scoreless extra frame, the teams matched up in their first-ever World Cup penalty shootout that finished 5-3 to Costa Rica.

Greece's joy wouldn't last once their match with 10-man Costa Rica went to penalties.


Today's action brought the tournament total to 145 goals. That mark already matches the entire tournament total from the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.

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