Netherlands vs Argentina World Cup 2014: Louis van Gaal admits 'hurt' after teaching Argentina goalkeeping hero Sergio Romero how to save penalties

Romero saved efforts from Ron Vlaar and Wesley Sneijder to book Argentina's place in the World Cup final

Sergio Romero came back to haunt Louis van Gaal as Argentina beat Holland on penalties to reach the World Cup final.

Argentina will face Germany in Sunday's showdown thanks to the exploits of Romero, who saved from Ron Vlaar and Wesley Sneijder in the 4-2 penalty win, which came after a scoreless 120 minutes in Sao Paulo.

Van Gaal knows all about Romero as he signed him for AZ Alkmaar from Buenos Aires-based Racing Club in 2007.

The Argentinian spent two years working under Van Gaal before the Holland coach departed for Bayern Munich.

After the match, the Manchester United manager in waiting admitted he was indirectly involved in Holland's demise as he schooled the stopper during his time in Holland.

"I taught Romero how to stop penalties (at Alkmaar), so that hurts," the Holland coach said.

"We were the club to bring him to Europe.

"He was a big talent, and someone who has the qualities to do that."

 

Van Gaal's team were favourites to win the penalty shootout.

The Oranje did not miss from 12 yards in their quarter-final shootout against Costa Rica.

But Van Gaal struggled to find enough players to take the spot-kicks in Sao Paulo, which surprised him greatly.

"It should give you confidence. We took those penalties in an incredible way against Costa Rica," Van Gaal said.

"But the issue is you score the first one and I asked two players to take the first ball before ending up with Vlaar.

"I thought he was the best player on the pitch so should have a lot of confidence.

"It just goes to show it's not easy scoring in a penalty shoot-out.

"It's the most terrible scenario, to lose on penalties: at the very least we were equal with them, if not the better team.

"It's a big disappointment."

Read more: Netherlands 0 Argentina 0 match report
De Jong sets tone as he muzzles Messi
Mascherano clears his head to track Robben tricks

Van Gaal hailed his team for their "fantastic" efforts in Brazil.

If the Dutchman had things his way he would be heading to England now to begin his new job as Manchester United manager, but instead he will head to Brasilia to prepare his team for a third-place playoff that he is clearly not a fan of.

"I think this match should never be played," he said. "I've been saying that for 10 years. We'll have to play that match. It's unfair."

Van Gaal would prefer to be planning for a final, of course. That is what Alejandro Sabella has to do following his team's progression.

He thinks Argentina will face formidable opponents in the Maracana on Sunday.

"I have great admiration for them," said Sabella of Germany, who hammered Brazil 7-1 in the other semi-final on Tuesday.

"The Germans have always shown physical might, tactical powers, mental force and have always had the players with a certain South American touch like (Felix) Magath, (Lothar) Matthaus, (Franz) Beckenbauer.

"They have been planning for a long time. They know about organisation.

"The match is extremely difficult, and they haven't played extra-time when we've played two. In 1998 we beat England in extra-time and lost against Holland in the heat of Marseille, and it harmed us. We have to recover and work to make sure we are ready."

PA

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Kim Wilde began gardening in the 1990s when she moved to the countryside
peopleThe singer is leading an appeal for the charity Thrive, which uses the therapy of horticulture
Sport
Alexis Sanchez celebrates scoring a second for Arsenal against Reading
football
Life and Style
health
Voices
An easy-peel potato; Dave Hax has come up with an ingenious method in food preparation
voicesDave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
News
i100
News
Japan's population is projected to fall dramatically in the next 50 years (Wikimedia)
news
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders
Heston Blumenthal to cook up a spice odyssey for British astronaut manning the International Space Station

UK's Major Tum to blast off on a spice odyssey

Nothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
John Harrison's 'longitude' clock sets new record - 300 years on

‘Longitude’ clock sets new record - 300 years on

Greenwich horologists celebrate as it keeps to within a second of real time over a 100-day test
Fears in the US of being outgunned in the vital propaganda wars by Russia, China - and even Isis - have prompted a rethink on overseas broadcasters

Let the propaganda wars begin - again

'Accurate, objective, comprehensive': that was Voice of America's creed, but now its masters want it to promote US policy, reports Rupert Cornwell
Why Japan's incredible long-distance runners will never win the London Marathon

Japan's incredible long-distance runners

Every year, Japanese long-distance runners post some of the world's fastest times – yet, come next weekend, not a single elite competitor from the country will be at the London Marathon
Why does Tom Drury remain the greatest writer you've never heard of?

Tom Drury: The quiet American

His debut was considered one of the finest novels of the past 50 years, and he is every bit the equal of his contemporaries, Jonathan Franzen, Dave Eggers and David Foster Wallace
You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

Dave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
Beige is back: The drab car colours of the 1970s are proving popular again

Beige to the future

Flares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's dishes highlight the delicate essence of fresh cheeses

Bill Granger cooks with fresh cheeses

More delicate on the palate, milder, fresh cheeses can also be kinder to the waistline
Aston Villa vs Liverpool: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful,' says veteran Shay Given

Shay Given: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful'

The Villa keeper has been overlooked for a long time and has unhappy memories of the national stadium – but he is savouring his chance to play at Wembley
Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own - Michael Calvin

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own