The World Cup final. Rematch of two previous finals. In ’86 it was Argentina’s day in their own country. Four years hence; then West Germany which is the basis for the current German power. Who will break this tie?
Germany has knocked Argentina out of the tournament in 2010 and 2006 in the quarterfinals. Many think that Germany is the stronger side. From start to finish, they have been the toughest team in the tournament.
Dismantling this year’s host. But Argentina’s defense has been staunch. Sergio Romero had two blocks in penalty kicks. Argentina’s midfield has been adequate. And they have the best player in the world who has carried them throughout the tournament. Titans both.
World Leaders took time out to be there. Angela Merkel supporting her team though no replica jersey or anything. Brazil’s leader Dilma Rousseff came to watch the end of her 11 Billion dollar debacle. Of course she has more hard times as they host the Olympics in two years time. Even Vladimir Putin was even there. Possibly getting notes for when Russia hosts in four years.
The first 20 minutes were action packed. Lots of good runs. Argentina was making the better effort.
In the 21st minute; Gonzalo Higuaín missed a gift of a shot. He was open at the top of the penalty box. Only the goalie to beat and on-sides the whole time. He pushed it out of bounds for a goal kick going the other way.
In the 27th minute Miroslav Klose off-sides. Easy one to call off. Then in the 29th minute Gonzalo Higuaín off-sides. He was celebrating effusively. He should have been more cognizant of where he was. He was easily off-sides on this run. Needs to save some of the reaction. He would have had an easy goal if he had.
Another miss in 37th minute from André Schürrle. André Schürrle the early replacement for Christoph Kramer. Christoph Kramer was himself a late started in place of Sami Khedira who was out with a leg injury. Kramer got hit hard in the head when he was concentrating on the ball way too hard. Hopefully he did not get a concussion though.
In the 40th minute, Lionel Messi got a run at the goal. Usually this ends with a goal but not this time. Jerome Boateng was able to make a saving stop at the very last second. All of Germany gasped.
Then in the first of two extra minutes of stoppage time; Benedikt Höwedes missed a header he will regret likely for the rest of natural life. Just missed with a bar out that would have put his team up just before the half. Toni Kroos’ second cross was almost the first goal.
The first half ended without any goals. Plenty of chances. But both defenses stayed strong. And the goalies are two of the best right now. Manuel Neuer and Sergio Romero have been excellent so far. Making good decision.
Only major change coming out of half time was Sergio Agüero came on for Ezequiel Lavezzi. See if his boat could add more pressure up front.
In the 47th minute another good chance for Messi. Off his left foot went across the goal just wide of its mark.
In the 56th minute, a controversial type play. Mostly controversial if you are an Argentine supporter. Nauer came way out to make a punch as Higuaín was making a run. Higuaín was trained on the ball but not near it. Nauer’s punch of legal and no foul. But his thigh strike Higuaín in just the right place. It was jarring but just a dangerous play in a dangerous game.
And as the half wore on, so did the players. Less and less energy. Less and less chances.
Something happened with someone going on the field. I am glad that ABC & ESPN have not shown the people who have gotten on to the field. I am glad. None warrant being included in the broadcast. And I commended them for that stance. Hopefully people will not use events like this to make their point. There is a whole internet for that.
Miroslav Klose came off in the 88th minute for what is likely his last time. He will go down in the record books is the leading scorer in World Cup history with 16 goals. Mario Götze coming on for him.
Regulation time came and went. The game was still tied at zero. On to extra time.
Early chance for André Schürrle. IN the 97th minute; missed chip by Rodrigo Palacio went wide of the goal. No goals in the first 105 minutes.
Then at the 113th minute, Mario Götze put it in the goal. He made an unchecked run. Stayed on-sides. Chested the ball down. Then buried on past Romero that could not be stopped by an octopus.
For the first time, a European team has won in the Americas. The Germans beat the Argentines again in the final and for the third straight World Cup in the knockout round.
Germans are the World Cup Champions !