World Cup Final: The Germans lift the World Cup trophy for the first time since the 1990 World Cup in Italy, after getting the late goal from substitute Mario Götze to secure the title with a narrow 1-0 victory in extra time.
By Jorge Belon, Editor in Chief
RIO DE JANEIRO– A breathtaking volley goal from super sub Mario Götze at the 113 minute sent Germany into ecstasy on Sunday as the Germans won their fourth World Cup trophy.
“It’s an unbelievable feeling; I don’t know how to describe it. I just took the shot and didn’t know what was happening,” The 22-year-old midfielder told FIFA.com. “For us, the dream has become reality. I’m very proud of the team and extremely happy about everything that has happened here in Brazil. Every player in our team deserves praised and we’re very proud to have won this trophy.”
The game was at the middle point of the second period of over time, and penalties seemed to be looming over this final. Both teams were running on fumes and exhaustion was an understatement. However, a fast break that started with substitute German midfielder André Schürrle. The 23-year-old was sprinting down the left hand side of the field with the ball, passing by three Argentinean defenders.
The defenders seemed to kill the play, when they forced the Die Adler midfielder to the corner but the Chelsea midfielder lifted up his head and found a streaking Götze, who was running into the heart of the penalty of the box.
Schürrle sent a cross into the box, Götze then chest the ball and before the ball could hit the ground; the right footed midfielder then stretched his left leg and blasted the ball into the right hand corner with his weaker foot to give Germany the 1-0 victory.
“It’s absolutely unbelievable. The main thing is of course that we were successful as a team,” German goalie Manuel Neuer told FIFA.com. “It’s incredible; we really are world champions now. A dream has come true for us Germans and we’ve finally won the trophy again. We’ve wanted it for so long. It was our time again. Everyone gave their all to be able to win it and I think we deserved to too. It’s still not completely sunk in yet.”
However, the game was not a walk in the park for the favored Germans. The usual sturdy and stable defense of the Die Mannschaft made an uncharacteristic error at the 20th minute of the first half; midfielder Toni Kroos headed the ball to his back line. He over hit his header and the ball dropped perfectly for Argentinean striker Gonzalo Higuaín.
The former Real Madrid forward was in a golden one on one situation with Neuer, but the French native would miss hit the shot and send the ball harmlessly wide left. The first of three blown opportunities Argentina would waste in the final.
The Germans themselves would come close to taking the lead right before halftime. At the 46th minute defender Benedikt Höwedes pounced on the ball that came from a corner with a powerful header to the bottom right hand corner of the net. The ball seemed destined to enter goal, and the crowd reacted as it did, but the ball would hit the post instead and the score would remain tied going into halftime.
In the first half the Germans would get an injury when 23-year-old midfielder Christoph Kramer was forced to leave the game at the 32nd minute with symptoms of a concussion. Kramer ran into the elbow of an Argentinean defender at the 16th minute.
Kramer would be replaced by Schürrle.
Argentina would start the second half strong, with Captain Lionel Messi nearly putting the ball into the back of the net at the 47th minute. The Barcelona play maker received a pass as he ran towards the center of the box. Messi blew past the defenders and then took a shot that barely rolled wide right to the goal. Another opportunity was missed and the match remained a scoreless.
The game would carry into overtime, and the Die Mannschaft nearly broke the dead lock at the 91st minute, when Schürrle took a close range shot. However, Argentinean goalie Sergio Romero would be there to stop the close range powerful shot with a point blank reaction.
Five minutes later, Argentina would blow their third and final golden chance to win the match. When substitute forward Rodrigo Palacio revived the ball as he entered the penalty box, the ball flew over German defender Mats Hummel head. The 32-year-old striker attempted to control the ball but he did not, as he attempted to chip the ball over the 6-feet-4-inches goalkeeper but the ball bounced out of bounds.
The South American missed chance would prove costly as Götze would seal the World Cup title for Germany with a spectacular volley.
“We started this project ten years ago and what has happened today is the result of many years’ work, starting with Jurgen Klinsmann,” German Coach Joachim Low told FIFA.com, after winning his first World Cup as the coach of Germany, and also making history by being the first European nation to win a World Cup on South American soil. “We’ve made constant progress, we believed in the project, we worked a lot and, if any group deserves it, it’s this team. We’ve always played good football and I believe that over this tournament, over seven matches, we’ve shown the best performances of any of the teams here in Brazil. The boys have also developed a team spirit which is unbelievable.”
The highlights to this match can be seen on this link http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=intl:1948634, video provided by ESPN FC.