Netherlands vs Mexico World Cup 2014 preview: Arjen Robben, Robin van Persie, Javier Hernandez and the players who could make the difference

A look at the game changers who will be in action in Fortaleza

The Netherlands take on Mexico this afternoon in another mouth-watering World Cup tie.

LIVE: Follow the latest news from Netherlands vs Mexico and Costa Rica vs Greece

With three wins from three the Dutch go into the game high on confidence and the strong favourites with the bookies but they will have a game on their hands against a Mexico side that managed to progress from a tough group themselves.

Read more: Danny Blind has faith in Van Gaal
Netherlands vs Mexico match preview
Strengths, weaknesses and key men

So who might be the players that make the difference in Fortaleza? We take a look at the game changers who'll be in action and hoping to win their nation a place in the quarter-finals.

NETHERLANDS

Robin van Persie

The Manchester United striker returns from suspension and will spearhead the Dutch attack. The former Arsenal player has scored 21 goals in his last 25 international appearances and doing it on the biggest stage hasn't fazed him either. He's scored three goals in the two World Cup games he's played in so far, including that header against Spain. It's no secret he's Louis van Gaal's main man.

Arjen Robben

Bayern Munich winger Robben has been in similarly ominous goal scoring form to RVP with eight in his last nine appearances for the Dutch. In his last seven World Cup appearances he has scored or assisted seven goals (five goals, two assists). He's been the stand-out player in the Netherlands rapid back-to-front system.

Arjen Robben celebrates the 5-1 victory over Spain Arjen Robben celebrates the 5-1 victory over Spain  

Memphis Depay

This has been a World Cup for substitutes making big impacts and among the most impressive has been Memphis Depay. The 20-year-old has been used from the bench twice - against Australia and Chile - and both times he scored. Having arrived at the tournament as something of a wildcard, the pace and power he's displayed in the minutes he's played have already seen him linked with a move from PSV Eindhoven to a host of bigger clubs.

Memphis Depay celebrates his goal against Chile Memphis Depay celebrates his goal against Chile  

MEXICO

Guillermo Ochoa

The man who will be the last line of defence when trying to keep the Dutch at bay will be Guillermo Ochoa. Against Brazil he made a string of fantastic saves that managed to get Gordon Banks trending on Twitter they were so impressive. That 0-0 draw against the hosts proved crucial in seeing his side through to the knock-out phase. Just one goal conceded so far will ensure the free agent goes into this came confident he can keep the 10-goal Dutch at bay.

 

Giovanni dos Santos

The former Tottenham player might not have a goal to his name - but he should have had a couple. During Mexico's first match against Cameroon he had two perfectly good efforts scratched off but fortunately for Mexico it hasn't been enough to dent his confidence. The 25-year-old, who now plays for Villarreal, has been a menace alongside Oribe Peralta.

Giovani Dos Santos Giovani Dos Santos  

Javier Hernandez

Regular watchers of the Premier League and Manchester United will know that Hernandez has been compared with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer for good reason. The Mexican has made a habit of coming off the bench to make an impact for his club and that's exactly how Miguel Herrera has opted to deploy the 26-year-old, despite his 36 international goals for El Tricolor. The decision to start him on the bench was vindicated when 20 minutes after coming on against Croatia he found the back of the net.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
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

The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss