Jul 13, 2014 at 8pm UK at ​Maracana, Rio de Janeiro
Germany
1-0
Argentina
Gotze (113')
Schweinsteiger (29'), Howedes (34')
FT(HT: 0-0)

Mascherano (64'), Aguero (65')

Match Analysis: Germany 1-0 Argentina (after extra time)

Sports Mole takes an in-depth look at how Germany were crowned World Cup champions with a 1-0 victory after extra time over Argentina at the Maracana.

Germany claimed their fourth World Cup title this evening courtesy of a 1-0 victory after extra time over Argentina at the Maracana.

Mario Gotze wrote his name into the history books with the winner seven minutes from time as he controlled Andre Schurrle's cross before volleying the ball home.

The victory sees Germany become the first European nation to win the trophy on South American soil, as well as moving second in the all-time winners list alongside Italy.

Here, Sports Mole takes an in-depth look at just how Joachim Low's side won the 2014 World Cup.

Match statistics

GERMANY
Shots: 10
On target: 5
Possession: 64%
Corners: 5
Fouls: 20

ARGENTINA
Shots: 10
On target: 0
Possession: 36%
Corners: 3
Fouls: 16

Was the result fair?

A quick look at the stats would tell you that Germany deserve their victory, with more shots on target and vastly superior possession. However, they only tell half of the story as the best chances of the match fell to the Argentines, but their finishing was wasteful.

Argentina allowed Germany the lion's share of possession and looked to hit them on the break. In truth, on the balance of chances, La Albiceleste should have won this game in normal time. Still, it was another solid display from the Germans and they will feel that they also did their job well enough to warrant the victory.

While it really could have gone either way this evening, over the course of the whole tournament Germany have probably been the most consistently impressive team. The likes of Ghana and Algeria have given them scares across the month, but they have also thrashed Portugal and Brazil and, all told, are worthy winners of the World Cup.

Germany's performance

They would not have been expecting a repeat of the semi-final humiliation of Brazil, and they certainly didn't get one. For long periods they controlled possession but could not break down what was a very stubborn Argentine defence.

They also looked vulnerable to pace at times, with their high line giving Argentina a couple of chances to get in behind. However, a mixture of imposing goalkeeping and wasteful Argentine finishing ensured that they had the opportunity to strike late on, and they made no mistake when the chance came.

It was a professional performance as ever by a team who have an incredibly bright future ahead of them. They have the third-youngest squad in the World Cup and could well be even better by the time the European Championships come along in 2016. Tonight wasn't their best performance of the World Cup, but once again they got the job done and can now enjoy being world champions for the next four years.

Argentina's performance

Their main objective tonight seemed to be to soak up the German pressure and strike on the break - a tactic that almost worked on a number of occasions. However, considering some of the gilt-edged chances they enjoyed, to have not had a shot on target is criminal.

Gonzalo Higuain, Rodrigo Palacio and even Lionel Messi were responsible for missing chances that they should have scored, and the difference between them lifting the trophy and watching on as deflated runners-up was that wasteful finishing. They pulled off the gameplan very well, but the only thing that was missing was a goal.

To lose in extra time of the World Cup final is always going to be hard to take, but in truth they only really have themselves to blame. They could have, and perhaps should have, won this match inside the 90 minutes, and that will not making ending up on the losing side any easier.

Sports Mole's man of the match

Bastian Schweinsteiger: Tonight's match was encapsulated in the midfield battle between Bastian Schweinsteiger and Javier Mascherano, who both put in towering displays for their respective sides. It is hard to say who exactly came out on top in the duel, but Schweinsteiger gets this award as Germany are the team who lifted the trophy.

He pulled the strings in midfield, keeping the ball moving as Germany patiently probed for a way through the Argentine defence. In addition to that, Schweinsteiger made a few vital interceptions in defence to clear a number of dangerous opportunities.

Biggest gaffe

This one has to go to Higuain for his miss in the first half. He wasn't the only player guilty of squandering a great chance for Argentina, but had he scored when Toni Kroos nodded the ball straight into his path in the 21st minute then it would have been a completely different game.

The effort was dreadful as he scuffed his volley tamely wide with only Manuel Neuer to beat, missing out on the chance of a World Cup final goal. Kroos himself is fortunate as he would have picked up this dubious honour had Higuain found the net, but the miss was even worse than the mistake that gifted him the chance.

Referee performance

Nicola Rizzoli controlled the game well tonight as it was one that threatened to get heated on a number of occasions. All of the four yellow cards that he issued were deserved, and while there were some calls for Mascherano and then Sergio Aguero to be sent off late on, he was right to show a bit of leniency.

His officials also deserve a mention as they got a couple of important offside calls right, including one that led to a Higuain goal being disallowed. All in all, a much quieter night than the final four years ago in South Africa.

What next?

Germany: Coincidentally, Germany's next match is a repeat of this final as they take on Argentina in a friendly at the start of September before getting their Euro 2016 qualifying campaign underway against Scotland.

Argentina: Argentina's next match is also that friendly against the Germans, with Brazil waiting after that in October.

Germany's defender and captain Philipp Lahm (front-R) holds up the World Cup trophy as he celebrates on with his teammates after winning the 2014 FIFA World Cup final on July 13, 2014
Read Next:
Result: Germany win 2014 World Cup
>
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