• World Cup

Krul: I'm innocent and will psyche out Messi

ESPN staff
July 7, 2014
Tim Krul makes the difference as Netherlands edge through on penalties

Tim Krul has vowed to wind up Lionel Messi and his Argentina team-mates if the Netherlands' World Cup semi-final goes to penalties on Wednesday.

Krul drew criticism for his antics during his side's 4-3 penalty shootout win over Costa Rica on Saturday night, having replaced first-choice keeper Jasper Cillessen with just seconds of extra-time remaining.

The Newcastle goalkeeper spoke to every Costa Rica penalty taker as they prepared to take their kick and he also walked around the penalty area in order to "psyche out" the opposing player.


Costa Rica manager Jorge Luis Pinto had no idea of counterpart Louis van Gaal's plan © Getty Images
  • Tim Krul has revealed that he thought Louis Van Gaal's decision to bring him on for the penalty shootout against Costa Rica was a "stroke of genius".
  • He added: "When I started my warm up, the Costa Rica bench was confused about what was going on. I saw their manager's face - it was priceless!"
  • Krul was brought on for Cillessen with penalties looming because Van Gaal felt he was better equipped to cope with the spot kicks due to being two inches taller than No.1 Jasper Cillessen.
  • And with the likes of Arjen Robben describing Van Gaal as "magic", Krul was also quick to hail his manager: "It is an honour for us to have a coach like him - a club like Manchester United knows what the world of football thinks of him.
  • "He is proving it in this tournament and he has shown what tactical qualities he has."

But the 26-year-old has revealed he will not hesitate to do the same again.

"I don't think I did anything wrong," he said. "I did nothing crazy. I didn't shout in an aggressive manner. I told them I knew where they were going because I had analysed it.

"I was trying to get in their heads and it worked because I saved two penalties.

"It is a good way of psyching out [the penalty takers] and I am happy to do it again."

Argentina are yet to take part in a penalty shootout at this World Cup, having beaten both Switzerland and Belgium 1-0 so far in the knockout stage, but if Wednesday's game in Sao Paulo goes all the way, Krul is sure he will be ready.

"We will analyse every Argentina penalty on Monday," he said. "We will sit together and write up a plan."

Cillessen, meanwhile, has revealed he did not know Van Gaal's plan to substitute him. The Ajax keeper was clearly angered by the move, kicking over a water bottle when leaving the field, soaking team-mate Bruno Martins Indi.

"I didn't know it would happen before, it was a bit of a surprise," said Cillessen, who has been told he will start against Argentina.

"I was a bit angry. I wanted to play an play the penalty shootout. I was angry, and went out. I kicked the water bottle - Bruno was feeling warm so I did it to cool him down.

"It is a pity I wasn't told, but it worked very well."

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