Brazil was supposed to end the 2014 World Cup holding the championship trophy. Instead, in the semifinals yesterday, Germany decimated the home country, 7-1, in one of the most lopsided games in World Cup history.
"Had someone had said we’d have won 7-1 I wouldn’t have believed them," said Toni Kroos, German midfielder and Man of the Match. "It was an impressive performance. It’s the best team performance for Germany I’ve been involved in."
Germany's victory was also Brazil's first non-friendly loss at home since 1975. And it was Brazil's first World Cup loss since the 1950 final — a match that still lives in infamy in the country.
"It’s the worst moment of my football career and the worst day of my football life," Brazil coach Luiz Felipe Scolari said. "Who is responsible for this result? I am, it’s me."
But the Germans did more than crush Brazil. They rewrote the World Cup record books.
The most impressive milestone at the Estadio Mineirao was reached by 36-year-old German forward Miroslav Klose. His goal in the 23rd minute gave him 16 career World Cup scores — the most all time. The previous record holder was Brazil's Ronaldo, who netted 15 goals in his World Cup career. (Talk about rubbing salt in the wound!)
"To set the record and to do it in Brazil is a great performance. It really means a lot to all of us. This is a record," German coach Joachim Loew said. "It’s great for him and for the team. If you’ve scored the most goals in the history of the World Cup, you’ve had to earn it. He’s still playing at the highest level and scoring goals."
Germany also set a team scoring record. As a nation, it now has 223 World Cup goals, which is the most all time. The Germans scored five goals faster than any team in World Cup history: five in 29 minutes. The previous best was Yugoslavia's five in 30 minutes from the 1974 tournament. Germany's six-goal victory was also a new semifinals record. And with the win, Germany reached the finals for a record-setting eighth time.
With one match left to play, Klose and the rest of the German squad could do some serious padding to their new records. Germany will know who their opponent is this afternoon when Argentina and the Netherlands meet in the second semifinal game.
Photo: Ian MacNicol/Getty Images