Jul 13, 2014 6:08 PM by Associated Press
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) - Germany won the World Cup. Host Brazil won a world of new friends.
The now four-time world champions, the first European team to win it on South American soil, earned the honor of lifting the most recognized trophy in sports after a 1-0 victory in a final as terrific as the tournament itself.
For a 32-day showcase of football at its best, the winning goal was beautifully appropriate. Mario Goetze controlled the ball with his chest and then shot past Argentina goalkeeper Sergio Romero in the 113th minute.
Argentina had created more chances, but failed to really test Germany goalkeeper Manuel Neuer throughout the 120 minutes of regulation and extra time.
The win is Germany's first as a united country. West Germany won the World Cup in 1954, 1974 and 1990.
German chancellor Angela Merkel, sat in the VIP section with other notables, waved a clenched fist. Vladimir Putin later reached across to shake her hand.
(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
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