Monday, October 01, 2007


Germany Women 2-0 Brazil Women

Germany edged out Brazil in a gripping match to become the first team to retain the Women's World Cup.
Brazil's Daniela crashed a fine 20-yard volley against the post early on.

But Germany went ahead when Sandra Smisek showed great composure to pick out captain Birgit Prinz, whose scuffed shot crept under keeper Andreia.

Brazil then missed a penalty when Marta saw her shot saved by Nadine Angerer and the Germans sealed the win when Simone Laudehr headed home late on.

World Cup Final Highlights: Germany 2-0 Brazil

A 2-0 scoreline was harsh on a Brazilian side who played with flair and creativity and posed problems throughout.

The South Americans, surprise finalists after their shock 4-0 hammering of USA in the semi-finals, were looking to be crowned champions for the first time.

And in a first half played at a ferocious pace at the Hongkou Stadium in Shanghai, they looked the more likely to break the deadlock.

The pace and trickery of Marta, Daniela and Cristiane always looked like breaching a German defence who had not conceded a single goal at the World Cup.

Formiga squandered a wonderful early chance following a dangerous free-kick, which Angerer did well to beat away, and Marta's direct running was a constant threat.

The Brazilians' best chance fell to Daniela, whose sublime volley from the edge of the box beat Angerer but canoned back to safety off the post.

Formiga missed a great early chance for the Brazilians

But the Germans also had their opportunities, the impressive Kerstin Garefrekes powering an early shot wide at the near post and Smisek wastefully curling an effort over the bar with her left foot.

And Germany made Brazil pay for not taking their chances when Prinz's first-time strike somehow bobbled under Andreia after fine work by Smisek on the right wing.

The Brazilians failed to let that affect their confidence and continued to press forward.

Their efforts looked like being rewarded when Cristiane won a penalty after racing on to a through-ball and was bundled to the ground by Linda Bresonik.

But Angerer made a superb stop to deny Marta from the spot-kick and minutes later she showed just why she had such a remarkable defensive record by pulling off a fantstic diving stop to keep out Daniela's free-kick with the help of the post.

Germany confirmed their victory in the dying moments when Laudehr met Renate Lingor's superbly flighted corner.

Germany coach Silvia Neid: "Brazil had more of the game, but we worked hard as a team, especially in defence.
"In the second half, we scored at the right time, and after that our players realized they could hold this game.

"After Nadine stopped the penalty, I was pretty sure we wouldn't concede a goal."

Brazil coach Jorge Barcellos: "We had a lot of chances. Germany had fewer chances, but when they got them they scored.
"Even though we lost, this result of making the final will bring more investors and will bring a lot of benefits to women's football in Brazil."