Germany - Uruguay
Score: 3-2, GER
My prediction: 3-2, GER
This one turned out to be just as spectacular as many imagined [The Globe and Mail. Both offences put on a show and produced one of the most entertaining matches of this World Cup [Glen Levy, TIME]. Thomas Mueller made a spectacular return from suspension, putting Die Mannschaft ahead 1-0 in the 19th minute. Uruguay again refused to give in after falling behind, though, and Edinson Cavani equalized in the 28th minute. The South Americans then took the lead six minutes after the half when Diego Forlan continued his brilliant World Cup, receiving a cross from Egídio Arevalo Rios and smashing a thunderous volley from 20 yards out into the corner of the net for one of the most unbelievable goals of the tournament.
It would have been all too easy for the Germans to get discouraged and fold after that spectacle. They're still a young team, and they had already acheived more at this World Cup than many had predicted. They refused to give in, though, and they obtained an equalizer just five minutes later from Marcell Jansen. Jansen made a superb run and headed a Jerome Boateng cross past Fernando Muslera. That seemed to inspire the Germans, and they poured the pressure on, but Uruguay's defence held firm until the 82nd minute when Sami Khedira put Germany ahead with another header. Uruguay had a spectacular chance at the death to tie it, but Forlan's superbly-taken free kick rang off the crossbar.
All in all, it was a brilliant game and one featuring two exciting sides. Both will be interesting to watch in the future. Germany's team is still very young, and they should be in great shape for Euro 2010 and the 2012 World Cup. Uruguay's players are a bit older, but their run in this tournament was truly inspiring, and they might just be able to shock the world again some day. Let's hope today's final lives up to the quality of yesterday's game.