Substitute player Mario Götze scored the game’s only goal in the 113th minute in leading Germany to victory in the 2014 FIFA World Cup Final today in Brazil. It was Germany’s fourth World Cup victory overall and first in 24 years.
Taking the ball from Andre Schurrle, the 22-year-old Götze took it off his chest and shoulder before delivering a brilliant kick to easily beat the Argentine goalkeeper Sergio Romo. Immediately the German players and supporters in the stands erupted in jubilation, knowing that victory was within their grasps if they could hold on for the remaining minutes in extra time.
With many fans staying up late in Germany and the rest of Europe, Götze has emerged from one of the team's best young players to elevate as a national hero. With the win at Maracanã Stadium in Rio de Janeiro, Germany became the first European country ever to win a World Cup in the Americas. It was the third time Argentina and Germany have met in a World Cup final and seventh meeting in the world's greatest soccer tournament. Argentina won the first championship matchup in 1986 led by Diego Maradona but Germany won the most recent World Cup final in 1990.
Argentina’s Lionel Messi, arguably the world’s best soccer player had one last chance to tie the game on a penalty kick in the final moments. But his attempt went far left above the top goal post and just moments later, Germany became the world champions.
Earlier in the game Messi and another of Argentina's marquee players Gonzalo Higuain missed chances to take the lead in a game that seemed so evenly matched in 90 minutes of regulation time. But Germany proved it was worthy of their world ranking at No. 2, behind Spain coming into the world's most prestigious soccer tournament and gutted out the victory over a proud Argentine team, with overwhelming fan support from the crowd of nearly 80,000. Despite the loss, the Argentina national team should hold their heads up high but remains determined to avenge past losses against Germany in future meetings.
Shortly after completion of the game, James Rodriguez of Colombia was announced emerged as the winner of the Golden Boot, as the leading goal scorer of the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Germany’s Thomas Muller followed close behind in second place, Brazil’s injured player Neymar was third and Lionel Messi ended up in fourth. Messi was also named the winner of the Golden Ball as the best player of the World Cup, while Germany's Manuel Neuer won the Golden Glove award for outstanding goalkeeper.
While the 2014 World Cup is now over, there's no question, the international event was one of the most popular and most watched sporting events in history. Attendance figures and statistics for the televised audience is expected to be released in the upcoming days.