Germany 1-0 Argentina, FIFA and UFWC titles unified

Deutschland by Filipe Castilhos

A wonderful goal by wunderkind Mario Goetze secured Germany their fourth World Cup title. In defeating Argentina, the Germans also took the UFWC title and became Unofficial Football World Champions. Having unified the FIFA and UFWC titles, Germany can claim to be the ‘undisputed’ champions. This was the fourth successive UFWC title match to go to extra time, but unlike the previous three it didn’t go to penalties. Substitute Goetze’s 113th minute strike was all that was required to win the game, as a fantastic World Cup came to an end.

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Netherlands 0-0 Argentina (Arg win 4-2 on pens)

Argentina fan by Ben Tavener

Another 0-0 draw after extra-time and another penalty shoot-out, but a different result as the Netherlands lost the UFWC title and crashed out of the World Cup, with Argentina becoming the new Unofficial Football World Champions and claiming a place in the World Cup Final. Goalkeeper Sergio Romero was the hero, saving shoot-out kicks from Ron Vlaar and Wesley Sneijder to give his side victory. Argentina will play Germany on Sunday with the official FIFA and unofficial UFWC titles both at stake.

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Netherlands 0-0 Costa Rica (Neth win 4-3 on pens)

Orange Face by Filipe Castilhos

The Netherlands are the new Unofficial Football World Champions, and have booked their place in the World Cup semi finals after a remarkable penalty shoot-out win over Costa Rica in this epic quarter final. The Dutch had edged things over 90 minutes, but both sides had chances to win the game in a brilliantly entertaining period of extra-time. Just as the match was about to go to penalties, Dutch coach Louis van Gaal substituted goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen, replacing him with Tim Krul, who had previously saved just two out of 24 penalties for his club Newcastle United. But the substitution turned out to be a master-stroke, as Krul saved two of the kicks, giving his side a 4-3 win.

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Costa Rica 1-1 Greece (Costa Rica win 5-3 on pens)

Costa Rica flag by Global Panorama

UFWC champions Costa Rica squeezed past Greece into the World Cup quarter finals after a penalty shoot-out settled this long, draining match. Greece had grabbed an injury time equaliser to put the match into extra time, with Costa Rica reduced to ten men. But goalkeeper Keylor Navas ended up being the hero for Los Ticos, saving brilliantly at the end of extra time, them saving the decisive penalty in the shoot-out to put his team through. Few pundits had reckoned on either side reaching the knock-out stages, never mind both.

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Who will be the Undisputed Football World Champions?

FIFA World Champion mural by NateTheApe21

After two weeks, 48 games, and 136(!) goals, only 16 of the 32 World Cup finalists remain in Brazil. The UFWC title is still in Brazil, too, and will remain in play right the way through to the final. That means the eventual World Cup winners will also be the Unofficial Football World Champions, and the official and unofficial titles will be unified. All 16 remaining teams have the chance to become football’s undisputed champions. The current unofficial champions are Costa Rica, who now face Greece in the Round of 16, on Sunday, 29 June, at the Arena Pernambuco in Recife.

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