World Cup 2014: Argentina were just ordinary, says Marc Wilmots

Angel Di Maria, Gonzalo Higuain and Lionel Messi

Belgium coach Marc Wilmots called Argentina "ordinary" after the South Americans beat his side 1-0 on Saturday to reach the World Cup semi-finals.

Gonzalo Higuain's first-half goal proved enough to send Argentina through, but Wilmots was unimpressed with their performance.

"If I played that way I would have been destroyed by the Belgium press," he said.

"We were not impressed by Argentina, they were just ordinary."

Belgium's bogey side
Argentina have won four of their five encounters with Belgium, scoring 11 goals and conceding four.
Belgium have kept one clean sheet in their last seven games against South American sides at the World Cup.
This is the first time since 1986 that Argentina have won a quarter-final outright in 90 minutes, when they beat England 2-1

Wilmots also felt the referee was too lenient on Lionel Messi, and that he failed to act upon what he perceived were Argentina's spoiling tactics.

"They can distort the rhythm, they take 30 seconds to take a throw-in and the referee doesn't do anything," he added.

"I don't want to be a cry baby, but every time there is a little foul it was always in favour of Argentina.

"Every time something happens with Messi the referee gives him a free-kick.

"I notice he made three fouls and no yellow card, we made one foul and one yellow card."

Argentina's win denied Belgium what would have been a place in the semi-finals of a World Cup for the first time since 1986.

Belgium players foul Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi made 19 successful passes against Belgium, including one that led to the winning goal

They had gone into Saturday's game boasting a 100% record at the tournament after winning all their group games and then beating the United States 2-1 after extra time in the last 16.

However, they never really tested Argentina goalkeeper Sergio Romero, with Manchester United midfielder Marouane Fellaini heading wide and Zenit St Petersburg's Axel Witsel lashing a shot over the bar late on.

"They didn't give us any space, this was a World Cup quarter-final and their extra experience probably counted for something," said Wilmots.

"I'm very proud of the boys, I have told them 'you guys are the youngest of all the last-eight teams'.

"There was a great deal of emotion, some of my staff were crying in the dressing room, because there is so much passion."

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