Dutch hang on and go through with Argentina
STUTTGART, June 16 (Reuters) The Netherlands beat Ivory Coast 2-1 today to qualify for the last 16 of the World Cup in a result that also guaranteed Argentina their place in the second round.
The Dutch scored twice within three minutes midway through the first half thanks to a Robin van Persie thunderbolt and a cool strike from Ruud van Nistelrooy and looked comfortably in control of their Group C match.
But Bakary Kone pulled a goal back for the Ivorians after 38 minutes with a venomous right-foot drive and the African side came close to equalising several times in the second half.
Argentina, who thrashed Serbia&Montenegro 6-0 earlier in Gelsenkirchen, and Netherlands both have six points from their opening two games while Ivory Coast and Serbia are eliminated before the final round of group matches with no points.
REUTERS DH PC23433