Netherlands vs Costa Rica World Cup 2014 match preview: Five reasons why Netherlands will beat Costa Rica

The sides meet in a quarter-final in Salvador bidding for a place in the final four

Ahead of Saturday's quarter-final meeting, we find a few reasons for the impressive Dutch to look forward to facing underdogs Costa Rica.

Follow Netherlands v Costa Rica live here
Read more: Five reasons why Costa Rica can beat the Netherlands

1. Goals, goals, goals

If there is one thing you are guaranteed to see when the Netherlands take to the field, it is that they will find the back of the net. Louis van Gaal’s side are the tournament’s top scorers, with 12 goals – an average of three goals per game. The Dutch demolished reigning champions Spain in their opening group game, beating the seasoned Iker Casillas an incredible five times. This was followed by three against Australia, and a double past a strong, well-organised Chilean outfit. Even when it seemed the goals had dried up, with the Oranje heading out to Mexico, two late strikes in as many minutes restored normality, sending them through to the last eight.

2. Total football

Van Gaal is a manager renowned for his positive, attacking football. It has always been the Dutch way and the current boss has certainly instilled this philosophy into the current crop of players. The Netherlands have been the tournament’s most exhilarating side to watch, with the speed, skill and fluidity of their attacks being breath-taking at times. With Arjen Robben and Wesley Sneijder on the flanks, it only takes a flash to go from defending a corner to celebrating a goal. Costa Rica will need to constantly be on their toes, putting on the defensive performance of a lifetime. Otherwise, they will almost certainly be sent packing and put on the next plane home.

3. Big game players

The Netherlands boast an array of world-class talent in their ranks, who on their day are capable of overcoming any opponent put in front of them. At only 22, centre-back Stefan de Vrij has proven to be a solid and reliable player, as well as showing his capabilities at the other end by netting against Spain. Danny Blind has received numerous plaudits for his performances at left back and has a great future ahead. However, it is in attack where Louis van Gaal’s side really flourish. In Arjen Robben, they possess one of the most skilful and dangerous wingers in world football. Add to that one of the planet’s most deadly and unpredictable strikers in Robin van Persie, and you have a formidable team.

4. Experiencing in winning trophies

No, we are not talking about the Netherlands’ experience of winning. In fact, although the Dutch have contended three World Cup finals, they have never actually won the coveted trophy. We are talking about the experience of winning domestic trophies throughout the current squad. Jasper Cillessen and Daley Blind were both part of the Ajax team which won the most recent Eredivisie title. Nigel de Jong has tasted Premier League and FA Cup success during his time with Manchester City, while Jonathan de Guzman was part of Swansea’s League Cup winning side. Furthermore, Arjen Robben, Wesley Sneijder and Robin van Perise have collectively won two Champions League titles, three Premier League titles, three Bundesliga titles, two La Liga titles and a Serie A title. If there are players from any country who know what going all the way feels like, they are from the Netherlands. Robin van Persie scores a header in the Netherlands' 5-1 victory over Spain Robin van Persie scores a header in the Netherlands' 5-1 victory over Spain

Costa Rica have gone as far as they can as the underdogs

Costa Rica are undoubtedly the surprise package at this World Cup. However, there has to come a point when things start going to plan. Having massively overachieved to progress from Group D as winners, Costa Rica earned themselves a favourable round of 16 draw against Greece. The energy-sapping group games seemed to take their toll against Greece, the Central Americans looking tired, sluggish and vulnerable for the first time. Fortunately, they took the game to penalties and came out victors. However, should Costa Rica manage to take Saturday’s quarter-final to extra-time, the Netherlands – with their superior ability and superior fitness – will be far too much to handle and no shootout will be required.

News
people'It can last and it's terrifying'
Sport
Danny Welbeck's Manchester United future is in doubt
footballGunners confirm signing from Manchester United
Sport
footballStriker has moved on loan for the remainder of the season
Sport
footballFeaturing Bart Simpson
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
New Articles
Olivia Colman topped the list of the 30 most influential females in broadcasting
tv
News
Kelly Brook
peopleA spokesperson said the support group was 'extremely disappointed'
News
The five geckos were launched into space to find out about the effects of weightlessness on the creatures’ sex lives
i100
Life and Style
techIf those brochure kitchens look a little too perfect to be true, well, that’s probably because they are
Sport
Andy Murray celebrates a shot while playing Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
TennisWin sets up blockbuster US Open quarter-final against Djokovic
Arts and Entertainment
Hare’s a riddle: Kit Williams with the treasure linked to Masquerade
booksRiddling trilogy could net you $3m
Arts and Entertainment
Alex Kapranos of Franz Ferdinand performs live
music Pro-independence show to take place four days before vote
News
news Video - hailed as 'most original' since Benedict Cumberbatch's
News
i100
Life and Style
The longer David Sedaris had his Fitbit, the further afield his walks took him through the West Sussex countryside
lifeDavid Sedaris: What I learnt from my fitness tracker about the world
Arts and Entertainment
Word master: Self holds up a copy of his novel ‘Umbrella’
booksUnlike 'talented mediocrity' George Orwell, you must approach this writer dictionary in hand
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
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

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

James Frey's literary treasure hunt

Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering