Argentina and Germany are no strangers when it comes to squaring off in World Cup finals.
They’ve been here before: twice.
After the two soccer giants both reached the 2014 final in Brazil, it will be the third-time that both nations will battle it out for the famous trophy.
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No other nations have squared off in three separate World Cup finals. Inevitably, there are a plenty of narratives bubbling away behind the scenes.
Throughout the 80s and 90s Argentina and Germany possessed some of the greatest players the world has ever seen. They faced each other in back-to-back World Cup finals in 1986 and 1990, with both nations prevailing once. Could the 2014 final be the start of a new power-struggle between the South American and European countries? Both squads have plenty of young stars, so that could well be the case.
Now is the perfect time to take a look a back at those past finals. Below you will find a quick recap on both finals, plus the chance to watch both games in full (thanks, YouTube) to get yourself ready for Sunday’s final.
1986 World Cup final: Argentina 3-2 Germany
A Diego Maradona inspired Argentina won the 1986 tournament at the Estadio Azteca in Mexico City. Argentina raced into a 2-0 lead in the final thanks to goals from Jose Brown and Jorge Valdano. Then Germany (still known as West Germany then) bagged two quick goals late on through Karl-Heinz Rummenigge and Rudi Voller to make it 2-2 with 10 minutes to go. Then Jorge Burruchaga popped up to score the winner, as Argentina won their second World Cup title.
1990 World Cup final: Argentina 0-1 Germany
Revenge was sweet in the 1990 final as the two nations squared off once again for the world title, this time in Rome, Italy. A barbaric game ensued as no love was lost between these two nations. It was the first final in 14 World Cups to see a player sent off as Argentina’s Pedro Monzon was sent off for a tough-tackle on Jurgen Klinsmann, then the Albiceleste were reduced to nine-men as Gustavo Dezotti was sent off for hauling down Jurgen Kohler. The game-winner came in controversial fashion five minutes from the end as Rudi Voller was adjudged to have been fouled by Roberto Sensini and Andreas Brehme stepped up to score the winning penalty kick. Germany prevailed to win their third World Cup, as Argentina were there own worst enemies.
Antonio Conte feels he has a bit of an embarrassment of riches in his midfield, not that it’s a problem outside of deciding who hits the pitch.
The Chelsea boss does not plan on selling Nemanja Matic despite the acquisition of N'Golo Kante — in fact Conte thinks Matic can be one of the best in the world.
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That’s not surprising, given that Matic was one of the keys to Chelsea’s 2014-15 PL title run.
Conte says he has some tricky selections to make in the coming days, as Chelsea prepares to open its Premier League season Aug. 15 at West Ham United.
“Kante is a good player and he was a target of our market. I am pleased the club took this player, it’s fantastic,” said the 46-year-old. “The players in a great team like Chelsea must know there are many players that can play. It’s important for me to have a good choice to try the best solution game by game. It’s important for me to see always the right attitude and behaviour from the players.
“When I have players like N’Golo, Nemanja, Cesc, Oscar and Chalobah, and Mikel who is in the Olympics, it is not easy to choose. I want to have this problem.”
For a manager who loves to keep it tight in the midfield, it would be far from shocking to see Matic and Kante behind two attacking mids (Willian and Hazard?) or even three.
Regardless, Chelsea’s match day tactics will be one of the more fascinating subplots of 2016, especially when Conte matches up against the Blues’ former boss Jose Mourinho (Oct. 22 at Stamford Bridge and April 15 at Old Trafford).
MADRID (AP) Brazilian club Corinthians says it has agreed to transfer striker Alexandre Pato to Villarreal in Spain.
Corinthians says on its club website that it has “agreed to the final administrative details of the negotiation” for Pato’s move to Villarreal.
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It adds that both clubs have agreed to not release the financial details of the transfer.
The 26-year-old Pato played for AC Milan from 2007 to 2013, before returning to his native Brazil with Corinthians. He played the second half of last season on loan at Chelsea in the English Premier League.
When news of Sigi Schmid’s departure from Seattle broke, there were plenty of folks wondering who could be the second coach in the Sounders’ MLS history.
One of those doing so publicly was ESPN writer Marc Connolly, who asked whether former Wigan and Everton boss Roberto Martinez could be interested in the gig.
[ MORE: Sounders, Schmid part ways ]
Fellow media member Taylor Twellman is obviously well-connected, and his reply raised some eyebrows, especially given the news that technical director Carlos Bocanegra is closing in on selecting the first manager in Atlanta United history.
Ryan is the quarterback of the NFL’s Atlanta Falcons, for those unaware. Martinez and Twellman worked together for ESPN this summer.
Is Martinez to MLS really a thing? He’s also been linked to the vacant Hull City job, and would be one of the highest profile coaches to make the switch in the history of the league.
Four Premier League teams were in action on Tuesday, with two picking up wins and not a clean sheet in the joint.
[ MORE: Sounders, Schmid part ways ]
MK Dons 1-3 Everton
Ronald Koeman‘s men got goals from Gerard Deulofeu, Ross Barkley and Muhamed Besic, but wasn’t entirely pleased with every facet of their game.
“The team, the players, we need to press better. The pitch in some stages of the game was too long. If you press up front, it means the midfielders they need to push up as well and it’s the same for the defenders.”
Bolton 1-2 Burnley
Andre Gray will likely be a well-known Premier League entity when his career is done, and the way he’s playing it could be by the time this season is complete. The Burnley man scored for the fifth time in four preseason games, and Josh Ginnelly also scored for the Clarets.
Barnsley 2-2 Hull City
Adama Diomande and Jarrod Bowen scored as the Tigers stayed unbeaten in preseason play.
Spurs 1-2 Juventus — RECAP