Tim Krul has vowed to wind up Lionel Messi and his Argentina teammates if Netherlands' World Cup semifinal on Wednesday goes to penalties.
- Jones: All part of the game
Krul drew criticism for his antics during the penalty shootout win over Costa Rica on Saturday night. The Newcastle United goalkeeper spoke to every Costa Rican penalty taker as they prepared to take their kick and he also walked around the penalty area in order to psych out the opposing player.
Some believe Krul's actions were not in keeping with the spirit of the game, but the 26-year-old is sure he did the right thing -- and he will not hesitate to do the same again.
"I don't think I did anything wrong," he told a news conference in Rio de Janeiro. "I did nothing crazy. I didn't shout in an aggressive manner. I told them I knew where they were going because I had analysed it.
"I was trying to get in their heads and it worked because I saved two penalties.
"It is a good way of psyching [penalty takers] out and I am happy to do it again."
Argentina have not yet required a penalty shootout to progress at this World Cup, but if Wednesday's game in Sao Paulo went to spot-kicks, captain and star player Messi would almost certainly take one. Whoever the five takers are, Krul said will be ready for them.
"We will analyse every Argentina penalty on Monday," the stopper said. "'We will sit together and write up a plan."
Krul only came on to the field of play in the last minute of extra time as a replacement for No. 1 Jasper Cillessen, who had played every minute of the Dutch campaign up to that point.
Netherlands coach Louis van Gaal thought Krul would be better equipped to save a penalty as he is two inches taller than Cillessen. Krul said the decision to bring him on was a stroke of genius from the Manchester United manager in waiting.
"When I started my warm-up, the [Costa Rica] bench was confused about what was going on," Krul added. "I saw the Costa Rica manager's face -- it was priceless!
"It is an honour for us to have a coach like [Van Gaal]. A club like Manchester United knows what the world of football thinks of him.
"He is proving it in this tournament and he has shown what tactical qualities he has."
Interestingly, Cillessen only learned about the plan to substitute him as Krul was warming up. The Ajax shot-stopper was none too happy with the move at the time as he kicked over a water bottle when leaving the pitch, soaking Holland defender Bruno Martins Indi in the process.
"I didn't know it would happen before, it was a bit of a surprise," said Cillessen, who has been told he will start against Argentina.
"I was a bit angry. I wanted to play the penalty shootout. I was angry, and went out. I kicked the water bottle -- Bruno was feeling warm so I did it to cool him down.
"It is a pity I wasn't told, but it worked very well. He made two saves."