In Pictures: Argentina Celebrates after Reaching First World Cup Final in 24 Years

By Sounak Mukhopadhyay
July 10, 2014 11:33 AM EST

In Pictures: Argentina Celebrates after Reaching First World Cup Final in 24 Years

South America lives its World Cup dreams for another day as Argentina secures a thrilling win against The Netherlands to reach the final for the first time in 24 years.

The victory was worth the wait. After 120 minutes of attacks and counter-attacks had left the score line 0-0, it was time for the dreaded penalty shoot-out. Sergio Romero, the Argentine goal-keeper whom nobody probably had high hopes for, turned out to be the hero of the match as he saved 2 out of 4 penalty shots taken by the Dutch.

It was the Dutch centre-back Ron Vlaar who took the first shot for his team. Romero saved the very first one to give an instant edge to his team over the European team. Then he saved the penalty taken by Wesley Sneijder who took an extraordinary penalty shot in the quarter-final match against Costa Rica and scored. Romero hit the bull's eye twice and took his team to the final. We have already seen some of the goalkeepers in this World Cup who turned out to be heroes for their team. After Keylor Navas (Costa Rica), Manuel Neuer (Germany) and Guillermo Ochoa (Mexico); it was the turn of Romero to make his country proud.

Argentina fans turned up in plenty, fighting rain and low temperature, to witness their team to go the final for the first time in this generation. The football-crazy nation hoped to create magic again with Lionel Messi. Last time they had their moment of glory in 1986 when Diego Maradona, whom many of them consider to be the "God of football," made their team the world champion. If Argentina manages to get past Germany, it will be the third time it will win the World Cup after 1986 and 1978.

It was only the previous day when South America hit the rock bottom in terms of morale as it witnessed the host nation Brazil suffer the most humiliating defeat in its history. Brazil lost to Germany in the semi-final 1-7. Now South America will hope again with Argentina. There is one interesting piece of fact which may motivate them further. No European team has been able to win the World Cup when hosted by a South American nation.

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