The World’s biggest sports event which is held after every four years came to an end on Sunday, 13th July where Germany was crowned Champions of the World for the 4th time in a tournament that attracted 32 teams across the globe.
This article gives you a glimpse of the facts and the dramas that made this season worth watching.
1. THE RUTHLESS GERMAN MACHINE
There was no doubt in any football fan’s mind that Germany was among the favourite teams geared to win the 2014 World Cup title and the team never disappointed. They finished the whole tournament unbeaten; winning all their games and only drawing one against Ghana.
It was as though Germany was scoring for fun; they first beat Portugal 4-0, which made history because Portugal has never conceded so many goals in a World Cup and then came the shocking thrashing of Brazil (7-1) in the semi-finals, marking the biggest margin victory at that stage.
The Germans scored a record 18 goals in a single tournament, a record that was previously held by Brazil in 2002. The European team also became the top scoring nation in the World Cup history with 224 goals with Brazil following closely with 221 goals. In addition, Germany reached the finals for the 8th time, more often than any other team breaking yet another record.
Klose, the veteran striker became the all time World Cup top scorer with 16 goals in his name.
At only 22 years, Mario Gotze’s winning goal in the final marked him as the youngest scorer at a Word Cup final and he also became the first substitute to score a winning goal in a final.
In a nutshell, the Germans were simply the best team in the tournament in every department and deserved to be crowned the 2014 World Cup champions.
2. CONTROVERSIAL DECISIONS IN THE 2014 WORLD CUP
In the opening game between Brazil vs Croatia, the controversial Japanese referee, Yuichi Nishimura faced heavy criticism after he gave Brazil a very ‘soft’ penalty in the 71st minute after Fred fell in the box, a move that changed the whole game in favour of the host.
In the Mexico vs Cameroon game, two goals by Giovani dos Santoz were controversially ruled out as offside by the assistant referee, Humberto Clavijo from Colombia who was later removed from further officiating at the tournament. Luckily, Mexico won the game 1-0.
Again, in the match between Nigeria vs Bosnia, the New Zealand referee, Peter O’Leary disallowed a goal from Bosnia due to a contentious offside call from his linesman. Nigeria ended up winning the game and qualified to the knockout stage.
When Greece played Ivory Coast, Ecuadorean referee, Carlos Vera controversially awarded Greece a penalty in the 91stminute on of a foul on the box, but replays showed that the Greek midfielder G. Samaras stubbed his foot into the ground and fell. The Elephants were eliminated after Greece converted the spot-kick.
Uruguay vs Italy; Luiz Suarez clashed with Giorgio Chiellini while waiting for a cross inside the Azzurri’s penalty box. Replays show that the former English Premier League top scorer lunged at the Italian defender and bit his shoulder.
The Mexican referee Marco Antonio Rodrigues refused to penalize Suarez despite the Italian defender’s protest by showing him the marks. The four times world champions were eliminated after this game.
In the match Netherlands played against Mexico, the Portuguese referee, Pedro Proenca gave the Dutch a penalty in the dying minute of the game after the Mexican captain thumped on Robben’s foot. The penalty was scored by Huntelaar to send Mexico back home while Robben admitted later on that he had dived.
When the African champions played France, the American center referee was criticized for several calls among them the denied goal of Emmanuel Emenike. Later on, Olivier Giroud should have hit the shower earlier when he elbowed Mikel but no penalty was given.
The game between Brazil vs Netherlands was no different, just two minutes into the game Thiago Silva hauled down A. Robben as he run into the box with the ball in a clear goal scoring opportunity. The Brazilian player was only shown a yellow card by the Algerian Referee yet the offence attracts a straight red card.
In the much awaited World Cup final match where the German machine played Argentina, Goalkeeper Neuer hit the Argentina striker Higuain on a jump while trying to defend the ball inside the box but the referee dismissed the calls for a penalty. To add salt into the offence against the Napoli striker, the referee gave the free kick against Argentina.