Nick D

Germany are the World Cup Champions defeating Argentina in extra time

Created on Jul. 13, 2014 5:44 PM EST

The 20th World Cup Final kicked off to a huge roar as Germany faced off against Argentina. A huge blow to Germany was they lost Khedira in the pre-match warm up as he was a critical link to their midfield play. Kramer was given the go ahead by Joachim Low to start a very strange choice as he had barely played any games for the national side. Even though with the late change they would come out with the majority of the possession early on, while Argentina showed off their defensive strength. Argentina would press the German side with numbers in the midfield closing down the open passing of Germany's play. The first twenty minutes were very tense and highly physical, as neither side would allow the other a clear chance at goal. Though a rare error by Germany almost cost them the lead. The ball was in the middle of the pitch and Kroos would attempt to head the ball back to his keeper. Though he got it completely wrong as he failed to see Higuain all on his own making his way back from the previous run. The ball fell at his feet and he was one on one with the keeper. The striker though rushed his effort, as the defenders scrambled back to cover, he would drag his shot wide of the target. Germany let off for a mistake that Argentina should have punished them for!

Higuain had the best chance in the first half and should have given Argentina the lead

Argentina were inspired after that as they would press the German side even more and Messi too started to make an impact on the game. He made a great run down the right side and cut into the box getting past the defender. He squared the ball back across the goals but the Germans covered well and managed to clear their lines. Then once again Messi would trouble the Germans as he found some space on the right and played in a beautiful ball into the danger area. Higuain did manage to get to then end of it and as he raced off celebrating his tap in, he failed to notice the offside flag raised to deny Argentina. Another injury blow for the Germans would see Kramer forced to be subbed off for Schurrle, and if you ask me he should have been given the starting position after Khedira's injury.

Messi causing trouble for the German defenders as was finding the gaps in between them

The Germans settled after that and then started to press back. Muller was getting himself more involved as he tested the Argentines down the right side. The half was drawing to a close and it was the Germans who would fiish the stronger of the two. Minutes before the halftime whistle they would come the closest to scoring from a corner kick. Kroos whipped in the cross and Howedes timed his run perfectly and headed towards goal from inside the 6 yard box. The ball though found the post as it rebounded back into play and then off Muller and safely into the goal keeper's hands. 0-0 at halftime as both teams entered the change rooms and still all to play for as both sides looked to lift the trophy.

Howedes with the best chance for Germany with the header hitting the post 

The second half and the Argentines came out with purpose as they pushed forward searching for the opening goal. Higuain first broke down the right side and got into the danger area, but the angle was too acute and he dragged the shot wide. Next was Messi as he beat the offside trap and raced off into the box down the left side. He wound up and fired a shot across the goal face only to see the ball go the wrong side of the post. Germany being held well and not given any space to play their free flowing game that has got them to the finals. Argentina now were enjoying the possession as the game pressed on while Germany looked for a way to get through this strong and very well organised defence. The minutes ticked over and the game was a real battle in the midfield and any mistakes by either side would surely be costly. Germany started to finally get themselves organised up front and started to bring the ball forward. Some good passing saw the Germans open up the defence as Kroos tried his luck from outside the box. He went for finesse rather than power and he dragged his shot wide of the post. The game slowed down and it was clear that we were going into extra time as neither side could find the breakthrough.

Extra time was needed as both sides still locked at 0-0 after 90 minutes of a very tough and physical game

The extra time period was very tense as both teams now that they had to give everything they had for the final 30 minutes. Both teams had chances in the first period of extra time to win this match, but Schurrle's first time shot was straight at the keeper, while Palacios' lob attempt would go wide of the mark. The players looked extremely tired and weary on the pitch as they came out for the 2nd period and it was now or never or this match would go to penalties for only the second time ever in a World Cup Final. The second period saw some very tired passes and not a lot of movement by either side. Germany did win a few free kicks inside Argentina's half but tired crosses and close marking didn't allow any shot at goal. Then just as the game was slowing down and it looked like penalties would be needed Germany would strike in the 113th minute. Germany built up the attack down the left side and Shcurrle would find a small opening and sent the cross in towards the near post. Gotze who had come on as a substitute, controlled the ball with his chest and then as he was falling he volleyed the ball past Romero and into the back of the net. 1-0 for Germany and only 7 minutes left for Argentina to try and send this game to penalties. 

Gotze scores in the 113th minute to give the Germans the lead in the World Cup Final

Argentina started to push forward but the German defence held well and kept them at bay. The minutes agonisingly ticked over as the German fans celebrated while the Argentine fans desperately urged their side on. Messi would win a free kick in the dying minutes about 30 yards out and this was Argentina's last grasp to keep their dreams alive. Messi stepped up and as the pressure of an entire nation was on his back he measured up and waited for the ref's whistle. Anxiously we all waited as his run was almost slow motioned, he struck it well with his left towards the top right corner but it sailed over the bar. That was it the ref blew the final whistle and Germany were the World Champions after a 24 year wait. 

Germany are the World Cup champions after a late winner in extra time was enough to see off Argentina

Ciao readers
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