Germany 2-4 Argentina
3 September 2014
Esprit Arena, Düsseldorf
Scorers: Aguero, Lamela, Fernandez, Di Maria (Argentina), Schurrle, Goetze (Germany)
Less than two months after losing the World Cup Final to Germany, Argentina gained some form of revenge with an impressive victory over the official world champions. New Manchester United signing Angel Di Maria was the star man, creating three and scoring another in a rampant display. Germany attempted a comeback, but looked a shadow of the team that won the World Cup. Although Germany will retain the FIFA title for the next four years, they are swiftly deprived of the UFWC title. A 59th UFWC title match win makes Argentina the new Unofficial Football World Champions.
Germany lined up in new shirts with four stars above their badge, denoting four World Cup wins. They were without the retired Philipp Lahm and Per Mertesacker, and the injured Bastian Schweinsteiger. Lionel Messi was missing for Argentina, having picked up a hamstring strain in Barcelona win over Villarreal on Sunday. Di Maria, the £59.7m Man United signing, produced a suitably impressive performance, in new manager Gerardo Martino’s first game in charge.
It was from a Di Maria cross that Argentina took the lead, with Sergio Aguero nipping in to tap the ball into the net from close range. And Di Maria controlled the game, as Argentina looked for revenge against the World Cup champions. Germany tested a shaky Argentina defence with a couple of chances, with Mario Gomez particularly wasteful. But before half-time it was 2-0 to Argentina, with another Di Maria cross this time finished by Tottenham’s Erik Lamela.
The second half began with an incredible burst of action. First Federico Fernandez of Swansea City scored a third goal for Argentina, from another Di Maria cross. And within moments Di Maria got a goal himself – and what a goal – playing a one-two with Zabaleta, running half the length of the pitch, then cleverly chipping Manuel Neuer in the German goal. 4-0 to Argentina, and this was looking like a humiliation for the World Cup winners.
But, almost immediately, Andre Schurrle pulled one back for his side. 4-1 to Argentina. And, in the 80th minute, Mario Goetze pulled another one back to make it 4-2. Could Germany pull off an incredible comeback? They could not. Argentina had defeated the official champions to become unofficial champions.
Argentina now get to defend the UFWC title, and their next match is a Superclassico gala match against Brazil at Beijing’s Bird’s Nest Stadium on 11 October. You can also keep up to date with all things UFWC via Twitter or Facebook. And you can find out everything you need to know about the UFWC in our official handbook, Unofficial Football World Champions, which contains a complete history of the unofficial competition. The 2014 edition is out now.