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WC final: Argentina vs Germany

Source : AGENCIES
Last Updated: Mon, Jul 14, 2014 03:17 hrs

And Germany are WORLD CUP champions!

Mario Gotze scores in the 113th minute to put Germany on the doorstep of becoming World Champions.

It is still goalless after 90 minutes. Match goes into extratime.

At halftime, it is 0-0.

Argentina forward Gonzalo Higuain missed a perfect chance to give his team the lead over Germany in Sunday's World Cup final, shooting wide to leave the score at 0-0 after 30 minutes.

Higuain intercepted an errant pass headed back toward goal by Germany midfielder Toni Kroos in the 21st minute, but his shot went wide.

Higuain also had a chance in the fourth minute but shot wide, and found the net in the 30th minute but was ruled offside.

The Argentines, with Lionel Messi leading the attack, made several dangerous moves forward early in the game, while Germany defended well enough.

The match at the Maracana Stadium kicked off with Germany wearing its traditional white shirts and Argentina playing in dark blue.

With Messi in the starting lineup, Argentina has one of the best players in history on the field. The four-time world player of the year has had a stellar World Cup so far, and a win on Sunday will give him the one major title he is missing.

For Germany, a team led by Philipp Lahm and Bastian Schweinsteiger is trying to finally win a major trophy after a nearly 20-year wait. But they'll have to do it without Sami Khedira, the Real Madrid midfielder who was ruled out of the final only minutes before kickoff and was replaced by Christoph Kramer.

The Germans, whose last major title came at the 1996 European Championship, reached the World Cup final in 2002 and the semifinals in 2006. They also reached the final at Euro 2008 and the semifinals at Euro 2012.

Historically, however, Germany has been a consistent winner. The national team is trying to win its fourth World Cup, but the first for a united country. West Germany won in 1954, 1974 and 1990, while a united Germany lost in the 2002 final to Brazil.

Argentina is a two-time champion, winning titles in 1978 and 1986.

The last World Cup title for each team came against the other. The Argentines, led by Diego Maradona, beat West Germany in Mexico in the 1986 final, while the Germans leveled the series by winning four years later in Italy.

Sunday's match is something of a tiebreaker, and it comes at one of the most iconic football venues in the world.


Team News

The teams are in - and both teams are unchanged from their semi-final wins over Brazil and the Netherlands.

Germany: Neuer, Howedes, Hummels, Khedira, Schweinsteiger, Ozil, Klose, Muller, Lahm (c), Kroos, Boateng

Argentina: Romero, Garay, Zabaleta, Biglia, Perez, Higuain, Messi (c), Mascherano, Demichelis, Rojo, Lavezzi 

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