Holland vs. Uruguay, Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town South Africa 2:30 PM EST Tuesday July 6, 2010 on ESPN
by Jason Green, Soccer Handicapper, Predictem.com
Match Odds: Holland 1.65 / Uruguay 6.50 / Draw 3.50
Over/Under: 2.5 goals
Moneyline: Holland -200 / Uruguay +600 / Draw +270
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In the first World Cup semifinal on Tuesday night 2 time champion Uruguay faces 2-time finalist Holland. The Dutch have never won the World Cup, as they lost in the finals in back-to-back tournaments in 1974 and 1978. Uruguay has won the trophy twice, but they have not done so since 1950 and their best showing since then was a 4th place finish in 1970.
Uruguay has had major trouble against teams from Europe, as they have not won against a team from the continent in their last 13 matches (7 losses 6 draws). The last time they beat a team from Europe is 1970 when they beat the U.S.S.R. 1-0 in the quarterfinals.
Both teams have yet to lose in South Africa and in their quarterfinal wins Holland beat Brazil 2-1 and Uruguay beat Ghana 4-2 on penalties after playing to a 1-1 draw.
Uruguay played and exciting match against Ghana and while they did win on penalties the win was a costly one. Striker Luis Suarez intentionally played a handball to keep a late goal from Ghana going in and he got a red card and will not play against Holland. They did not play well in the first half, but great in the second half. They will have to play a great match in both halves against the favored Dutch.
The Dutch beat favored Brazil in the quarterfinals, but they got an own goal and then the other goal because Brazil failed to mark a player. They cannot count on mistakes from Uruguay and will have to play well, especially in the middle of the field.
In an interesting fact if the winner of this match loses in the finals New Zealand will be the only squad that did not lose in South Africa playing to 3 draws in group play and not advancing to the knockout stage.
Holland Recent Form:
7/2/2010 Holland 2 Brazil 1 (World Cup)
6/28/2010 Holland 2 Slovakia 1 (World Cup)
6/24/2010 Holland 2 Cameroon 1 (World Cup)
6/19/2010 Holland 1 Japan 0 (World Cup)
6/14/2010 Holland 3 Denmark 1 (World Cup)
Uruguay Recent Form:
7/2/2010 Uruguay 1 Ghana 1 (Uruguay won 4-2 on penalties) (World Cup)
6/26/2010 Uruguay 2 South Korea 1 (World Cup)
6/22/2010 Uruguay 1 Mexico 1 (World Cup)
6/16/2010 Uruguay 3 South Africa 0 (World Cup)
6/11/2010 Uruguay 0 France 0 (World Cup)
Holland will be shorthanded in this match, as DF Gregory van der Wiel and MF Nigel de Jong are both suspended for this match after picking up their second yellow card in as many matches against Brazil.
Uruguay also has some major players that will be out for this game with striker Luis Suarez and DF Jorge Fucile both suspended. They will also be without the injured MF Nicolas Lodeiro and captain Diego Lugano and DF Diego Godin are both injured up and may not play.
The loss of Luis Suarez will be huge, as he is huge for Uruguay’s offense and scored both of their goals in their round of 16 win against South Korea.
Diego Forln leads Uruguay in goals scored in the World Cup (3) and he played great in the win over Ghana. He will be keyed on by the Dutch defense, but since their D is not their strength Forln will score.
Wesley Sneijder and Arjen Robben are the big guns on offense for Holland and Sneijder was credited with 2 goals against Brazil even though 1 was an own goal. These 2 will pressure the Uruguay defense and one of them, if not both of them, will score in this match.
MF Mark Van Bommel has a huge task in this game breaking up the attack of Uruguay, but it will be tougher since MF Nigel de Jong is suspended. He and the solid Dutch midfield will play well, but they will not hold Uruguay scoreless in this match.
Jason’s Pick to Win: Holland will come out and play well, as they are still on a high after beating Brazil. The Dutch simply have too much offense for Uruguay to handle, as they will win this match 2-1 or 3-1 and advance to their 3rd World Cup finals and first in 32 years.