The Dutch, who have never won the World Cup but reached three finals, including the last one in Johannesburg four years ago, play Argentina in Sao Paulo on Wednesday in one of two classic match-ups between South American and European powerhouses.
To the astonishment of all and sundry, except his coaching staff and replacement goalkeeper Tim Krul, Louis van Gaal sent the latter on for number one Jasper Cillessen and it proved to be an inspired call in the penalty shootout against Costa Rica in the quarterfinal of the FIFA World Cup.
Tim Krul replaced Jasper Cillessen as a penalty-kicks specialist. It worked for the Dutch as he saved two attempts by Costa Rica to take his team to a win in FIFA World Cup quarters.
Newcastle's preparations for Sunday's Premier League derby with Sunderland have been given a lift after confirmation that captain Fabricio Coloccini and goalkeeper Tim Krul have signed new contracts.