A wonderful World Cup will draw to a close at the Maracana tonight as Germany and Argentina battle it out to become champions
A thrilling tournament has served up attacking football and goals galore, with many of the star names producing their best form.
Germany now go on to the majestic setting of the Maracana in Rio de Janeiro and they will have the support of the locals as they take on Brazil’s fierce rivals Argentina. It is the third time the two countries will have met in a World Cup final and presents a clash of continents as Germany bid to become the first European side to triumph on South American soil. Germany on at 13/10 to win in 90 minutes with Ladbrokes and the same firm puts forward 8/11 for the German machines to lift the trophy.
Argentina came out on top in Mexico in 1986 before West Germany won in Italy four years later, and Germany have also knocked out Argentina at the quarter-final stage in the last two tournaments but Lionel Messi and the gang are 12/5 with Ladbrokes to win the ultimate in normal time and 11/10 to simply lift the World Cup trophy a third time.
Having crushed Portugal 4-0, drawn 2-2 with Ghana and edged out USA 1-0 to win Group G, Germany then needed extra-time to see off Algeria 2-1 and overcame France 1-0 before their annihilation of Brazil. Thomas Muller has 10 World Cup goals, and five at this tournament, and he will provide a major threat, the Munich front man to score and Germany to win is chalked at 10/3 with Ladbrokes
Miroslav Klose is likely to lead the line after becoming the World Cup’s all-time leading scorer with his 16th finals goal against Brazil. Miroslave klose to score and Germany to win 4/1
Argentina have continued to win by narrow margins in the knockout stages, having scraped past Switzerland 1-0 after extra-time, beaten Belgium 1-0 and then required penalties to progress at the Netherlands’ expense after a 0-0 draw in the semi-finals.
Messi caught the eye with four goals as Argentina topped their group by defeating Bosnia-Herzegovina 2-1, Iran 1-0 and Nigeria 3-2, but it has since been suggested that he is suffering with fatigue following a long season. That withstanding Lionel Messi to score and Argentina to win their World cup is priced at 3/1 with Ladbrokes making him the greatest player of all time.
Another key figure will be Italian referee Nicola Rizzoli, who follows in the footsteps of Howard Webb and will hope the final is less fiery than the match in South Africa between Spain and the Netherlands.
The Germans are not great defensively and Argentina will be very patient and frustrate them. They will take it all the way to penalties if they want to because defensively they have been very sound.
It would be a fitting end if Sunday’s game delivers a classic final, but regardless of the outcome Brazil 2014 will live long in the memory.
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