FIFA World Cup 2022: Two games, two penalty shootouts. The ongoing FIFA World Cup which is being played in Qatar is reaching its business end and oh boy, hasn't it been fantastic. Argentina are alive, their dream is alive, their hopes are alive and so is Messi's goal to kiss the World Cup trophy. In the group stage round, they were jolted by a defeat against Saudi Arabia, but after that heartbreak, they have been nothing else, but simply fantastic. Last night Argentina inched closer to the trophy by defeating Netherlands 4-3 on penalties.
The Argentina team led by the great Lionel Messi will face last edition's finalists Croatia in the semis and it promises to be a spectacle. Messi will have that 2014 finals against Germany going on in his mind, make no mistake and he will try and do everything to brave the Croatian storm. Luka Modric's Croatia emerged victorious in the first quarter-final match against Brazil as they knocked them out of the tournament. This victory certainly did not come easy for Argentina. They were afloat and were on their road to the semis with a 2-0 lead over the Dutch but substitute Wout Weghorst scored two late goals and forced matters into extra time. The scores remained 2-2 at the end of extra time and a thrilling tie-breaker followed.
Emi Martinez, Argentina's goalkeeper saved the first two Netherlands penalties and ensured that his team had a 2-0 lead in the shootout. Things got pretty nervous for Argentina when Enzo Fernandes missed the fourth spot kick. There was certainly a very thin ray of hope for the Dutch, but things were not meant to go in their favour. Lautaro Martinez scored the winning goal for Argentina and helped them go through to the semis. Their skipper Lionel Messi has looked like a man on a mission. He helped Nahuel Molina score the first goal for Argentina and later scored the second goal for his side in the 73rd minute. Messi celebrated in his trademark style by lifting his hands in the air assuring the fans of Argentina that he is still trying his best to achieve World Cup glory, for himself and his country and also for the late Diego Maradona.