Knockout Stage at Brazil 2014.
Sunday, 13th July
2014 World Cup Final
The last time Argentina made it through to the World Cup Final, they lost to Germany (0:1) in Rome; although they did beat West Germany (3:2) in Mexico City, four years previously. Win this one and they equal Germany's three World Cup Finals victories.
Germany beat Argentina (3:1) in the Malmo group game and eventually went out to Sweden (1:3) in the semi-final.
As for the group matches, the Birmingham encounter ended without a goal; then Germany went on to contest the World Cup Final with England.
Were the two Popes, Benedict from Germany and Francis from Argentina, watching this match in The Vatican together?
Brazil 2014 might have been a great World Cup Finals in general but the final game itself will not go down as the most memorable in history.
For ninety minutes neither team managed to score a goal and the neutrals were preparing to see goalkeepers Manuel Neuer and Sergio Romero try to win the World Cup for their team; with a vital penalty save, or two.
The only goal of the game came in the 113th minute when Mario Gotze, on for Miroslav Klose, converted Andre Schurrle's cross; giving Germany their fourth gold star to put on their shirt, equalling Italy and now just one behind Brazil.
Lionel Messi received the Golden Ball as the tournaments best player, but I'm sure that's very little consolation to the 100,000 Argentina fans who travelled across the border to see him lift the other golden trophy.
It's not nice to lose a World Cup Final but it sure is nice to be in one.
Final Score: Germany 1 - Argentina 0 aet
1-Manuel Neuer; 16-Philipp Lahm, 20-Jerome Boateng, 5-Mats Hummels, 4-Benedikt Howedes; 6-Sami Khedira, 7-Bastian Schweinsteiger, 13-Thomas Muller, 18-Toni Kroos; 8-Mesut Ozil, 11-Miroslav Klose.
1-Sergio Romero; 4-Pablo Zabaleta, 15-Martin Demichelis, 2-Ezequiel Garay, 16-Marcos Rojo; 6-Lucas Biglia, 14-Javier Mascherano, 8-Enzo Perez; 9-Gonzalo Higuain, 10.-Lionel Messi, 22-Ezequiel Lavezzi.
4 yellow cards.
The Road to Rio
World Cup Finals
Uruguay trailed Argentina at half-time (1:2) but replied with three goals in the second half; to win the first ever World Cup Final (4-2) on July 30th, 1930.
Italy were one of the countries who missed out on the vote to host the first World Cup but managed to win the prestigious golden trophy for the home fans.
The third World Cup was held in Europe for a second time, although Germany had annexed Austria, and Spain was in civil turmoil.
Although no cup-final as such, Uruguay and Brazil went into their final game with the winner guaranteed to be champions; a draw would be enough for Brazil.
The fifth World Cup tournament produced a record number of goals, including a 7:5 encounter between Austria and Switzerland in Lausanne.
Brazil presented a 17 year-old Pele to the world; who went on to claim a hat-trick in Brazil's 5:2 semi-final win over France and bag another two in the final.
Czechoslovakia overcame Hungary in the quarter-finals and Yugoslavia in the semis, while Brazil took care of England and the host nation, Chile.
Geoff Hurst scored a hat-trick, in the final against West Germany, as England triumphed in a thrilling game watched by Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II.
1970 belonged to Pelé, who earned his third World Cup winners' medal when Brazil got their hands on the Jules Rimet Cup.... for keeps.
W. Germany 1974:
Johan Cruyff was the player of the tournament as total football became the buzzword of the day, even though Holland lost to West Germany in the 1974 final.
Holland contested the 1978 World Cup Final, in Argentina, for the second time in a row. As in West Germany, they again finished runners-up; to the hosts.
The Spain 82 World Cup finals increased to 24 teams and the format was changed to have two group stages, with four second-round groups of three.
In 1986, Mexico became the first nation to stage the World Cup Finals for a second time; having only staged the competition sixteen years previously.
In 1990, Italy became the World Cup of stalemates. Both semi-finals were drawn out through penalty kicks. In the final itself, the only goal came from the spot.
Once Team US had played a few games most of the nation began to understand they were hosting the greatest show on earth and how the game was played.
France became the sixth nation to win the World Cup on home soil. Thirty-two teams competed in the 16th World Cup; better known as France 98.
The 17th World Cup, held in Korea and Japan, was the first World Cup finals to be shared by two hosts and the first to be held in Asia.
The 2006 World Cup Finals ran from 9th June to 9th July; the opening match in Munich and the final in Berlin. Munich and Dortmund hosted the semi-finals.
South Africa 2010:
Eighty years after the First World Cup Finals in Uruguay, the world's most prestigious football competition was finally hosted on the African continent.
Five times World Cup Champions, Brazil, get a second chance to hold the prestigious World Cup Finals; 64 years after they last hosted the tournament.
VAR made its World Cup debut and set out to change the course of a game with some crucial rule infringement watching and vital on the spot decisions.
When FIFA executives met in Zurich to decide on who would host the 2018 and 2022 World Cup Finals, Qatar was probably the biggest surprise to many.
The 2026 FIFA World Cup Finals will be jointly hosted by Canada, Mexico and the United States. The United Bid won the hosting rights ahead of Morocco.
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