Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
We inform. You decide.
Sunday, June 04, 2023

Bleacher Creatures: One last look at the 2014 FIFA World Cup

Thirty-two teams entered this year’s World Cup with aspirations of winning the biggest tournament in soccer.  One month and 64 matches later, Germany emerged as World Cup champions.  Join me as I recap Germany’s epic title run and relive some other great moments from the World Cup.

Germany started out in Group G with Portugal, Ghana, and the United States.  In their first match against Portugal, Germany controlled every facet of the game as they shut out the Portuguese 4-0.  Forward Thomas Müller scored a hat trick (3 goals) in this game.  Next was Ghana, who shocked many by drawing 2-2 with Germany.  This gave the United States a slight bit of hope that they might just win the Group of Death after being counted out by so many.  This would not come to fruition, however, as Germany defeated the United States 1-0 to win Group G.

In the knockout stages, Germany won two nail biters as they beat Algeria 2-1 in extra time and France 1-0.  Goalkeeper Manuel Neuer made a clutch save on a French shot in stoppage time to seal the win for the Germans.  After narrowly beating France, Germany went toe to toe against host country Brazil in the semifinals.  In a game that shocked every single person in the sports world, Germany demolished Brazil 7-1 on its home turf.  Germany was up 5-0 just 29 minutes into the game!  It was in this game that Miroslav Klose scored his 16th career World Cup goal, which moved him past Brazilian legend Ronaldo as the all-time scorer in World Cup history.  It was very fitting that he accomplished this magnificent feat against Brazil.

In the Final, Germany would face another South American team in the shape of Argentina.  It was a defensive battle all the way through with neither team conceding a goal in regulation.  The game went into extra time and the stage was set for Mario Götze.  In the 113th minute, the 22-year-old substitute scored the only goal of the match to secure the fourth World Cup title in Germany’s history.  Their four titles tie them for second all-time with Italy.  Brazil has the most with five.

Here are my other big takeaways and surprises from the World Cup:

  • Spain’s early exit in group play and Brazil’s meltdown in the semifinals
  • United States goalkeeper Tim Howard not being a finalist for the Adidas Golden Glove Award despite recording 16 saves in the game against Belgium.
  • Costa Rica and the United States’ ability to get out of their respective “Groups of Death”
  • The self-destruction of both Brazil and Uruguay without the presence of star players Neymar and Luis Suarez.  I honestly believe that Brazil would not lose 7-1 to Germany if Neymar was playing.  I will also note that the USA’s Jozy Altidore became a nonfactor in the World Cup after injuring his hamstring against Ghana.
  • Fairly every match in the knockout stages was close except the Germany/Brazil semifinal

Here are the 2014 FIFA World Cup award winners: 

  • Adidas Golden Ball (Best Player Overall): Argentina’s Lionel Messi
  • Adidas Silver Ball (2nd Best): Germany’s Thomas Müller
  • Adidas Bronze Ball (3rd Best) Netherlands’s Arjen Robben
  • Adidas Golden Boot (Most Goals Scored): Colombia’s James Rodriguez with 6 goals in 5 matches
  • Adidas Silver Boot (2nd Most): Germany’s Thomas Müller with 5 goals in 7 matches
  • Adidas Bronze Boot (3rd Most): Brazil’s Neymar with 4 goals in 5 matches
  • Adidas Golden Glove (Best Goalkeeper): Germany’s Manuel Neuer with 25 saves
  • Hyundai Young Player Award: France’s Paul Pogba,who had 1 goal and 1 assist in 5 matches
  • Fair Play Award (Team with the best disciplinary record): Colombia with just 5 yellow cards in 5 matches
  • In the Third Place Match, Netherlands defeated Brazil 3-0.  Brazil ended their tournament run being outscored 10-2.

It was an exciting World Cup that leaves behind new questions in the soccer world.  Is this the beginning of a dynasty for Germany?  Will Spain and Brazil return to championship form?  Will Messi continue to dominate despite losing in the Final?  Will Neymar be the same after this injury?  Only time can provide the answer.  If this World Cup has taught us anything, it is that soccer is just like any other sport: unpredictable.

Enjoy what you're reading? Get content from The Alligator delivered to your inbox
Support your local paper
Donate Today
The Independent Florida Alligator has been independent of the university since 1971, your donation today could help #SaveStudentNewsrooms. Please consider giving today.

Powered by SNworks Solutions by The State News
All Content © 2023 The Independent Florida Alligator and Campus Communications, Inc.