5 pieces of s**thousery that took Argentina-Netherlands to a glorious level

Argentina and the Netherlands delighted the globe with one of the greatest World Cup quarterfinals of all time on Friday. Argentina took a 2-0 lead with Lionel Messi providing an outrageous assist before converting from the penalty spot and that advantage remained until the 83rd minute.

The Netherlands forced extra time with a brace from Wout Weghorst at 83' and 90+11', and then, after a scoreless extra time, we had all the drama of a penalty shootout that Argentina ultimately won 4-3. 

In between all 120 minutes, we saw a combined 48 fouls, 14 yellows cards and one (post-match) red as this historic rivalry between La Albiceleste and the Oranje wrote one of its most memorable chapters. Along with the goals, these were the standout dramatics. 

5 pieces of s**thousery that took Argentina-Netherlands to another level

#1. Messi's blatant handball... no yellow

After providing one of the best assists of his career, Messi was preposterously fortunate to escape a booking for a remorselessly blatant handball in the 55th minute. He was booked later for dissent, but this was just comical and got the Dutch fired up.

#2. Emi Martínez imposes himself over Luuk de Jong 

Goalkeepers. If you've ever played the game, you'll certainly understand the sentiment that all keepers are crazy — they are oddball mixtures of aggression, aloof wisdom, team spirit and savior complex. 

And this is classic goalkeeper behavior. Winning 2-0 and feeling on top of the world, Emi Martínez tries to go Muhammad Ali over Sonny Liston on mother-loving Luuk de Jong.  

Like Icarus, Martínez went too close to the sun. 

#3. Leandro Paredes with perhaps the greatest sequence of back-to-back bookable offenses ever and then he's hit-sticked by Virgil van Dijk

This might be the most batshit crazy minute in World Cup history. Paredes is booked for the wild challenge, but he escapes punishment for immediately getting up and cracking one at the outrushing Dutch bench... until Van Dijk extracts a bit of his own justice

#4. Argentina employs all the mind games in the shootout 

Now it's time for Martínez to shine. This save and dance set the tone. 

The tone is remorseless.

And this is one of the most emotionally charged World Cup photos ever.

#5. Messi fights Edgar Davids, Louis van Gaal and an unknown presence 

The final whistle wasn't the end. I can only guess as to what words were exchanged here.

Messi clearly hadn't been happy with the Dutch staff at any point. Some of that was certainly Van Gaal, pre-game, pinpointing Messi's lack of defensive work as something the Dutch could exploit.

And Messi remained heated during his post-match interviews. ("What're you looking at, fool?!")

Argentina vs. Croatia in the semifinals is on Tuesday. So let's do this.

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