The teams have had their ceremonies and a bit of time to reflect, and they have spoken.
Thanks to the postmatch press conferences, we’re getting some insight to both the delight of the victory and the agony of defeat.
From the losing side first, there was much positivity despite the obvious disappointment.
Argentina struggled to score over the last three matches, and Lionel Messi took some flak for not being able to carry his team in the knockout stage like he had in the group matches, despite his eventual win of the Golden Boot.
However, his manager Alejandro Sabella supported his star, saying he’s got nothing to prove:
Sabella on Messi: "As for his reputation, he is in that pantheon. But he was there before. He has been there for quite some time.”
Oliver Kay (@OliverKayTimes) July 13, 2014
After he addressed Messi, he wanted to know all his players deserved respect:
“These are very close matches and when you make a mistake, you know it’s difficult to turn it around. But in general terms, I’m very proud and my boys played an extraordinary World Cup. It was very exciting to see them play and it’s clear they gave everything for the Argentine jersey. They can look themselves in the mirror and know they gave everything. I congratulate my players for their extraordinary work and also congratulate Germany on winning the title.”
Midfield engine Javier Mascherano was more crushed than his manager:
Translation: “The pain is immense. We gave it our all and are sorry for the people of Argentina. This sadness will be for life.”
Now, from the winners. Andre Schurrle, who set up the winning goal, was on cloud 9.
“This is the best moment of my life. I had to cry because I was so overcome. I couldn’t stop it. It was always a dream to become a world champion. We are so looking forward to celebrating with our fans in Berlin tomorrow.”
There was a pretty good shot of Schurrle with his girlfriend after the match before the medal ceremony, tears in his eyes unable to comprehend the moment as he looked towards the sky.
Philipp Lahm knows his team has some outstanding players, but even without a guy like Lionel Messi they were able to pull out the win:
Lahm continued, saying:
“We stepped up time and again in the tournament, did not let ourselves get distracted by any disruption, went on our way. And at the end you stand there as world champions – an unbelievable feeling. The team has remained quiet and patient.”
Germany defender Mats Hummels didn’t have the same elation of victory, having given so much on the field:
“I am still completely trapped in another world, physically too exhausted to be able to rejoice euphorically. But that will come in the coming days.”
I think he’ll find it was worth it.
German manager Joachim Löw:
“We were together for 55 days, have this whole project but actually started ten years ago. Our great strength was that we always have increased steadily over the years. If anyone deserves this win, its this team. Today there was only one deserved winner, and that was this team. It has developed an incredible team spirit and uncanny willpower. This deep feeling of happiness will remain for all eternity. That makes us all proud.”
Finally, the hero of the day, 22-year-old Mario Götze:
Götze: "A dream became reality…It wasn't a simple year for me. It wasn't a simple tournament."—
Brian Straus (@BrianStraus) July 13, 2014