Dutch midfielder Koopmeiners chose the last minute of a World Cup quarterfinal to produce an imaginative free-kick as he combined with Weghorst for a brilliantly-executed goal. It reminded everyone of a few clever ones in the history of the tournament...
NETHERLANDS' WOUT WEGHORST (VS ARGENTINA 2022)
Wout Weghorst scored two dramatic late goals on Friday against Argentina, the second from a remarkably inventive free-kick in the 11th minute of stoppage time, as the Netherlands fought back with seven minutes of normal time remaining to force extra-time. It was cleverly worked, with Teun Koopmeiners feinting to curl a free kick into the area only to play it short and deceive the Argentine defence. Weghorst took a touch, held off his marker and slotted home a finish on the stretch.
SWEDEN’S TOMAS BROLIN (VS ROMANIA 1994)
Sweden enjoyed a successful tournament at USA ‘94, finishing third. And striker Tomas Brolin produced one of their highlights. After qualifying from a group that also included Brazil, Sweden beat Saudi Arabia in the last 16. There, Brolin finished a wellworked free-kick in a 2-2 draw with Romania. Sweden eventually won on penalties but were beaten in the semifinals by Brazil.
ARGENTINA’S JAVIER ZANETTI (VS ENGLAND, 1998)
David Seaman was expecting a Gabriel Batistuta thunderbolt as England played Argentina for a place in the quarterfinals of the World Cup in 1998. But as Batistuta ran in, Juan Sebastian Veron rolled a pass into the box, where Javier Zanetti appeared from behind the wall to shoot past Seaman. England had been caught out by the perfectly planned routine.
BULGARIA’S DINKO DERMENDZHIEV (VS PERU, 1970)
In the first game of the group stage (13th minute), just outside the box, a bit to the keeper’s right, Dermendzhiev darted to the left, around a wall of four defenders. From the right came another Bulgarian, who received the free-kick pass and flicked it back behind the wall, onto the foot of Dermendzhiev, who chipped it home.
BRAZIL’S RONALDINHO (VS ENG, 2002)
It has been debated ever since Ronaldinho, over 35 yards out and wide on the right, sent a free-kick spinning over a floundering, unprepared David Seaman in 2002 -- Was it meant to be a pass? The Brazilian says he went for goal. England, of course, disagree. The wrong-footed England goalkeeper could only watch as the ball curled into the top-left corner.