Fortaleza: He had stopped two of the world’s most famous forwards, and Sunday, Brazilians and Mexicans alike chanted his name.
Guillermo Ochoa was one of the main reasons why Mexico was on the brink of reaching the quarter finals at the World Cup — before the Netherlands came from a goal down to win 2-1 with two late goals.
Voted Man of the Match, he was inconsolable. “It isn’t easy to go out this way, the way this match went,” said the ’keeper who had denied Brazil star Neymar and Dutch forward Arjen Robben at the World Cup. “It’s just very hard to deal with when victory escapes you this way.”
However, the 28-year-old, who plays for French second division team Ajaccio, now looks likely to attract the attention of Europe’s bigger clubs. He almost single-handedly held Brazil to a 0-0 draw in the group stage and then kept the Dutch at bay until the final minutes in the second round on Sunday.
He twice prevented what looked like certain goals, getting between Stefan de Vrij and the ball in the 57th minute and then dropping down to stop Robben nine minutes later.
After Sunday’s game, Netherlands coach Louis van Gaal’s single note of praise for his opponents was for their goalkeeper and how his skills prompted him to change tactics. “We shot at the goal and Ochoa made a fantastic save,” the Dutch coach said referring to De Vrij's effort. “After that we moved to Plan B.”