Sabella: Argentina should be proud regardless of defeat

The 59-year-old was pleased with his side's performances at the World Cup irrespective of Sunday's loss and felt things could easily have gone their way
Alejandro Sabella feels Argentina should be proud of their World Cup campaign regardless of their 1-0 defeat after extra time to Germany in Sunday's final at the Maracana.

The South Americans got a number of chances to take the lead against Joachim Low's men, but Gonzalo Higuain, Lionel Messi and Rodrigo Palacio all failed to beat Manuel Neuer.

Argentina were made to pay for their profligacy in the 113th minute when Mario Gotze netted the only goal of the game and Sabella has stressed that the game could have gone either way.

"I'm sad because we couldn't win the tournament, but I'm proud of this team," the Argentina coach told reporters.

"These players have to be an example for our country after the tournament they played. We will be recognised for this achievement in the future. The team kept on growing right until the end.

"We were the better team for a while and they were on top at other moments. Both teams could have won the game."

Sabella then went on to stress that the timing of the semi-finals played a role in Argentina's defeat, too, as they had one day less to recover from their match against Netherlands than Germany after their win over Brazil.

"We played against a team that played their semi-final one day before us and that basically won their game before the end of the first half, while we had to play extra time."