Seasoned Germany expect to edge past Argentina

Fri Jul 11, 2014 6:04pm EDT
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By Julian Linden

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - Germany expect the experience that runs through their team to give them the edge over Argentina in Sunday's World Cup final after admitting they restrained themselves when they thumped Brazil in the semi-finals.

Germany ruined the samba nation's dream of winning the World Cup when they hammered Brazil 7-1 on Tuesday but forward Thomas Mueller revealed it could have been worse.

The Europeans were leading 5-0 at halftime and decided during the break that they would not embarrass the hosts by showboating with fancy passes or trick shots.

"With the score the way it was, we said we should avoid being arrogant and to refrain from humiliating the opponent," Mueller said on Friday.

"There was this agreement and it came from the players themselves."

Mueller, one of 10 names short-listed for the Golden Boot award given to the best player of the tournament, said Germany were anticipating a much tougher match from Argentina so could not afford to let up at any stage against the South Americans.

"I’m not expecting that we'll be ahead 5-0 at halftime again like against Brazil even though that would be nice,” he said.

"It could end up being a tight match like against Algeria or France. But it doesn’t matter. We know what we have to do.”   Continued...

Germany's national soccer team player Philipp Lahm (L) and his teammates run during a training session in the village of Santo Andre north of Porto Seguro July 10, 2014.   REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann