Germany 1-0 Argentina

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Germany 1-0 Argentina (AET): Gotze’s extra-time goal wins the World Cup
“Germany won their fourth World Cup after victory over Argentina in a tense but enjoyable final. Joachim Low’s team selection was compromised by the late withdrawal of Sami Khedira through injury. Christoph Kramer took his place – although he only lasted 30 minutes himself. Alejandro Sabella’s side was unchanged from the semi-final against the Netherlands. Both sides had promising moments in an even match – Argentina had the better chances before Mario Gotze’s late winner.” Zonal Marking

Germans End Long Wait: 24 Years and a Bit Extra
“For years, Brazilians had a phrase they would inevitably utter when things went wrong. ‘Imagina na Copa,’ they said after an endless traffic jam or a construction accident or an ugly rash of violence dominated the news — imagine if this happened during the World Cup. It became a foreboding warning, a pre-emptive sigh at the presumed disasters that lay ahead. Over five weeks, though, Brazil avoided any of the major catastrophes it feared. Thrilling games and entertaining soccer — as well as the national team’s own stunning collapse — generally overshadowed any logistical issues, and the tournament was seen as a global success. So it was fitting, then, that in the tournament’s final game, the Brazilians managed to dodge the ultimate on-field nightmare, too.” NY Times

Germany 1 Argentina 0 (BBC)
“Germany were crowned world champions for the fourth time as Mario Gotze’s extra-time winner beat Argentina in the 2014 World Cup final. Gotze demonstrated perfect technique and commendable calm to chest down Andre Schurrle’s pass and sweep in a left-foot finish with the prospect of a penalty shootout only seven minutes away. Argentina, with skipper Lionel Messi looking subdued despite flashes of his talent, could not respond and Germany claimed their first World Cup since they beat the same opponents in Rome 24 years ago.” BBC

Germany’s World Cup title a result of revamped development, identity
“At the final whistle, after Germany claimed a fourth World Cup by beating Argentina 1-0 in extra time, BastianSchweinsteiger collapsed to the turf, utterly spent. He had given everything, running to the point of exhaustion, the only holding midfielder in the Germany squad still standing by the end, and that only just, a stray arm from Sergio Aguero having caught him across the face leaving him with a gash on his cheek.” SI – Jonathan Wilson

The Party’s Over: A Critic’s Take on Brazil’s Dismal World Cup Legacy
“About a five minute walk from Rio de Janeiro’s historic Maracanã stadium, the site of today’s Argentina vs. Germany final (Update: Germany won, obvsly), there used to be a small community of about 700 families called Favela do Metro. The reason the city demolished the tightly-packed neighborhood is hotly disputed: Residents said it was to build a parking lot, while the city claimed it had more ambitions urbanization plans, such as a park. But at least for now, there is little left except a jumbled mess of concrete and brick.” Fusion

Germans See World Cup Win as a Symbol of Global Might
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“Even normally quiet streets were electrified early Monday by Germany’s dramatic 1-0 win of the World Cup in extra time, a victory that symbolized, at least to fans, not just the country’s dominance of Europe, but its global prominence. Car horns and vuvuzelas honked, and fireworks and firecrackers exploded. On the Kurfuerstendamm, the gleaming street of stores and restaurants that was the symbol of West Berlin during the Cold War, cars quickly jammed traffic and fans draped themselves in the black, red and gold of the German flag.” NY Times

World Cup Pass & Move: Germany Wins It All
The World Cup came to a close on Sunday, with Germany defeating Argentina in extra time, 1-0, in Rio’s Maracanã Stadium. Here, five Grantland writers look at five important characters from the match. Be sure to check out all of our coverage of the final, and the entire month of wonderful soccer action, at our World Cup landing page. Grantland (Video)

A Final Prediction: Germany Wins a Thriller
“Like the Sex Pistols in their prime, World Cup finals rarely fail to disappoint. After all the buildup and hype, the games often turn out to be low-scoring, bad-tempered affairs. In 2010, Holland, the nation that, during the nineteen-seventies, invented “total football,” a free-flowing, attacking style of soccer that enchanted the world, disgraced itself by trying to kick the Spanish “tiki-taka” men off the park in Johannesburg, and almost succeeded. Four years earlier, during the latter stages of a tense 1-1 tie between Italy and France, Zinedine Zidane, the French midfield maestro, was sent off for headbutting an Italian player, Marco Materazzi, who had allegedly called his sister a whore. (Italy went on to win on penalties.)” New Yorker

Germany Grinds Its Way To World Cup Triumph
“Well, I got the result right. But my prediction that it would be a thrilling World Cup final turned out to be wishful thinking. Instead of thrills, we got another tense, low-scoring game, in which both teams accumulated more bookings for bad fouls (two each) than clear-cut chances. By the middle of the second half, it was evident that one goal would settle it, and, in the second period of extra time, Germany nabbed one, thanks to a great piece of finishing by the young striker Mario Götze, who had come on as a substitute.” New Yorker

Success for Brazil, Just Not on the Field
“When Mario Götze settled a crossing pass with his chest and volleyed a goal that won the World Cup, German fans roared in ecstatic release. Those from Brazil were nearly as delirious, even if it was out of relief as much as celebration. It might have seemed an odd sight, Brazilian fans celebrating another team inside their own cathedral of soccer, the Maracanã stadium. But after two demoralizing losses brought national embarrassment, solace finally came Sunday as Germany defeated Argentina, 1-0, to become the first European team to win a World Cup played in North or South America.” NY Times

In a Latino Enclave, the World Cup Puts Everything on Pause
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“Something unusual happened on Sunday afternoon on the streets of Jackson Heights, Queens: Quiet. As crowds gathered to watch the World Cup final around the Latin American enclave — in bars and barbershops, in electronics stores and by food trucks — the usually frenetic area beneath the elevated No. 7 train grew uncharacteristically still. Business, which spills onto the streets in the form of carts and trucks and tables, came to a halt. There was no merengue. Or cumbia. Or bachata.” NY Times

Don’t Cry for Messi, Argentina. This Germany Team Is One of the Best in Years.
“Lionel Messi seemed to recognize that he had lost the World Cup several minutes before the final whistle had blown. Moments after substitute striker Mario Götze scored a wundervolley in the game’s 113th minute to put Germany up by the decisive margin of 1–0, the Argentine legend had his last somewhat realistic chance at goal. Defender Marcos Rojo sent a high arcing cross deep into the German area and Messi came flying in for a free header from about 15 yards out. Had his shot gone in, it would have been a glorious goal. Instead, the ball fluttered harmlessly over the bar, and Messi walked away with his head down, staring desperately at the turf.” Slate (Video)

Brazilians Go Back to Real Life
Brazil suffered mightily with its national team’s 7-1 rout at the hands of Germany in the World Cup semifinals last week, but the authorities here breathed sighs of relief as the tournament came to a close on Sunday with Germany’s victory over Argentina, amid muted street protests and a display of Brazil’s ability to successfully organize sporting megaevents.” NY Times

Germany May Be the Best National Soccer Team Ever
“Germany didn’t begin the World Cup as the favorite. That honor belonged to (ahem) Brazil. But that’s a slightly deceptive measure. This was a top-heavy World Cup; not only Brazil but also Germany, Argentina and Spain would have been the front-runners in many past editions of the tournament. By the end of the World Cup, Germany left little doubt it is the best team in the world. In fact, it may be the best national soccer team ever assembled. One simple way to compare World Cup winners is by their goal differential throughout the tournament. Germany, with 18 goals scored and four allowed, comes out at a plus-14.” Five Thirty Eight

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