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Netherlands comeback stuns Mexico

ESPN staff
June 29, 2014

Klaas-Jan Huntelaar scored an injury-time penalty to complete a dramatic comeback for Netherlands in a 2-1 win over Mexico and book their place in the quarterfinals of the 2014 World Cup.

Giovani dos Santos opened the scoring for Mexico in sweltering conditions in Fortaleza, only for Wesley Sneijder and Huntelaar to net late goals and set up a meeting with the winner of Costa Rica versus Greece.

Mexico enjoyed a bright start to the game as Miguel Layun drove a cross wide on 14 minutes, before Hector Herrera dragged an effort off target and then Dos Santos drew a save from the legs of goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen.

Robin van Persie spurned an opportunity for Netherlands in the 27th minute, slicing wide, and just before half-time Arjen Robben had a strong shout for a penalty turned down following challenges by Rafael Marquez and Hector Moreno.

Mexico took the lead three minutes into the second half when Dos Santos unleashed a left-footed shot from outside the area to flash the ball beyond the reach of Cillessen.

A combination of Guillermo Ochoa and woodwork denied Stefan de Vrij after the defender diverted goalwards from close range only to see ball pushed onto the post by the Mexico goalkeeper.

Netherlands pushed for an equaliser and their pressure told with two minutes of normal time remaining, as Sneijder thumped home from Huntelaar's headed assist.

And the comeback was complete three minutes into injury time as Huntelaar tucked in from the penalty spot after Robben was tripped by Marquez.

The victory marked the first time in World Cup knockout round history that a team trailing in the 88th minute won in regulation.

More to follow...

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