1. Mario Götze Has Written His Name Into Folklore
Following on from Andres Iniesta and many others before him, Mario Götze’s is a name which will now echo through the ages as far as the World Cup is concerned.
The Bayern Munich man’s expertly controlled finish was the cherry on the top of a particularly sweet German cake, and he’ll be the face forever associated with a victory which said so much more about a team ethic than relying upon individual stars.
2. Lionel Messi’s Fairytale Turns Into A Nightmare
This was billed as Lionel Messi versus the Germans, and ultimately the individual talent wasn’t enough to get the better of the greater team.
Messi missed a great chance early in the second half, and that is likely to be the moment which he’ll remember when he looks back on a night when he had the chance to establish his legacy, but missed.
3. Sami Khedira Was A Miss For Germany
As was detailed on these pages before the match, Sami Khedira has had a terrific tournament for the Germans, striding through the knockout phases like a colossus as he battled back from injury.
Sadly that injury curse struck again before the final, ruling him out of the clash and ensuring that Christoph Kramer earned his first start for country in literally the most pressurised of circumstances. When he was forced off with a concussion, that absence of Khedira only became more pronounced, as Germany missed the midfield penetration they showed again and again against Brazil in the semi-final..
4. Javier Mascherano Would Slide Tackle His Grandmother
Once again Javier Mascherano was superb in the Argentina midfield, hassling and hurrying his German opponents into the brink of submission.
The Barcelona man was fortunate to stay on the pitch given the sheer amount of tackles he attempted during the game, often illegally, but he was the heartbeat of his side and set the tone in what was ultimately a losing cause, but one that he didn’t deserve to lose.
5. The Best Team Won The World Cup
Forget the hype about Lionel Messi, this was Germany’s time and Germany’s moment, and was a reward for the excellent team ethic they displayed throughout their time at the tournament.
This was the end of a process, and a design which the Germans started years ago, and as everyone knows, it’s lovely when a plan comes together.