Netherlands coach Louis van Gaal admitted he used the cooling break to change tactics as his side snatched a last-gasp 2-1 victory over Mexico to reach the World Cup quarter-finals.
In searing conditions at the Estadio Castelao in Fortaleza on Sunday, play was halted for three minutes in each half to allow players from both teams to take on much-needed fluids during the last-16 clash.
Mexico looked on course to progress as they led through Giovani dos Santos’ 48th-minute opener, while goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa later produced an astonishing point-blank save from Stefan de Vrij.
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But with time running out, Van Gaal switched his formation and it paid dividends with Wesley Sneijder smashing home an 88th-minute equaliser and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar scoring from the spot in the fourth minute of added time after Arjen Robben was brought down by Rafael Marquez.
Van Gaal said: "I first changed to a 4-3-3 and then we created a lot of opportunities with a shot on the post and a fantastic save.
"Then I moved to plan B and yes, I did that in the cooling break. That is a clever way of benefiting from these breaks.
"Did you see what I did?" he asked reporters.
"Van Gaal brought on target man Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, took Dirk Kuyt out of defence to partner him in attack and had his team pump long balls into the Mexico penalty area.
"It’s a big compliment that my players picked up on it immediately. We have a modest group of players but they have outstanding team spirit and this is ultimately what led to the victory.
"They had faith and believed until the very end. The humidity was not in our favour. We were fresher and fitter than the Mexicans.