RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Mario Goetze lived up to the billing of being Germany’s wunderkind by scoring the goal that ensured Germany became the first European team to win the World Cup title in South America.
Goetze came off the bench in the 88th minute and netted the winner in the 113th minute of the final against Argentina with a perfectly taken volley.
Andre Schuerrle, another substitute, broke away down the left flank, outstripped tiring Argentine defenders and sent a cross into the penalty area. Goetze controlled the ball with his chest perfectly as he ran and from five meters (yards) fired a left-foot volley from an acute angle inside the far post.
“It’s an unbelievable feeling. I don’t know how to describe it. You just shoot that ball in, you don’t really know what’s happening,” Goetze said.
“And then at the end of the match, having a party with the team, the whole country ... it is for us, a dream come true. As I said, it’s an indescribable moment. We, I think, deserve this trophy.”
Goetze began the tournament in Germany’s starting lineup but was relegated to the bench when coach Joachim Loew decided to use his only true striker Miroslav Klose who started yesterday before being replaced by Goetze.
“I told him that he can show the entire world that he is better than (Argentina star Lionel) Messi, ‘you can decide the World Cup. You have all the possibilities to do that.’ And that’s what I told him. I had a good feeling about him.”
Goetze has always had the potential to be one of Germany’s brightest stars.
“He is a wunderkind, with immense skill,” Loew said.
The 22-year-old Bayern Munich midfielder was voted the man of the match in this final and also took the same honor in Germany’s 2-2 draw with Ghana in the group stage when he scored his other goal of the tournament. He appeared in six of Germany’s seven matches in the tournament, sitting out the 7-1 semifinal rout of host Brazil.