Man, what a day of football yesterday was. Things kicked off with a brilliant game between Brazil and Chile, and even after 120 minutes the two sides couldn't be separated. David Luiz and Alexis Sanchez scored for their respective sides in the first half, but that was to be all the scoring until the penalty shootout. There Brazil raced to a 2-0 after misses by Mauricio Pinilla, but going into round five teams were tied at two. Neymar stepped up first and calmly scored, but Gonzalo Jara hit the post immediately after to send Brazil to the next round.
That performance put the next game of the day, Colombia vs Uruguay, in a terrible spot as there was no way it could live up to the standard of the early one. It wasn't a bad game by any standard though as Colombia showed why many considered them a dark horse favorite, dismantling Luis Suarez-less Uruguay behind two goals from now World Cup top scorer James Rodriguez.
Those two games also set up the first Quarterfinal pair as Brazil will take on Colombia at Fortaleza of the 4th of July
Netherlands vs Mexico, Kickoff: 6pm CET
No disrespect to the two teams playing in the later of the two slots, but this earlier game promises to be the better game. A barn burner even as both teams posses explosive offenses but both at times struggled to control their opponents on the defensive side of the ball. The Dutch have a 100% record going and have impressed especially against Spain, but were also very good against Chile, while Mexico also haven't lost yet, winning the decider against Croatia and beating Cameroon while showing good defensive form in a draw against Brazil. The pressure is surely larger on Netherlands as they are considered favorites and the team spirit of Mexico could be just what could derail the Dutchmen.
Costa Rica vs Greece, Kickoff: 10pm CET
The match-up between the No.1 surprise of the World Cup against the No.2 surprise of the World Cup. In my opinion at least. Raise your hand if you had this one written in ink before the tournament began. I thought so. But despite the fact that these two teams weren't expected to make it out of Group Stage that doesn't mean this game will be a snooze fest. Costa Rica have impressed every step of the way, winning against Uruguay and Italy, and sharing the spoils with England. Greece have been less dominant, squeaking through with a last minute penalty to book a place in the Round of 16 with just four points. This just might be the first time that Costa Rica go into a World Cup match as favorites.
Here's hoping for another great day of football. Enjoy!