Millions of people are expected to tune in to watch the FIFA World Cup 2014 Final draw between Germany and Argentina this Sunday, July 13. In the United States, the climactic and concluding draw of the international football tournament will be televised on ABC, and live streaming will be made available through the station's website and mobile app. The match can be watched online at the live stream links below - free for TV subscribers. The World Cup 2014 Closing Ceremony will be made available online through live stream below.
As Pope Francis is from Argentina and Pope Emeritus Benedict is from Germany, some media have humorously drew the connections between them and Sunday's World Cup Final, the two popes apparently have no plans for the game. As players, coaches, and football fans wait in eager expectation of Sunday's final showdown, many are finding some way to ease their anxiety, and finding rest in God through prayers may be the best way. Besides, don't forget that just above Estadio Maracana stadium stands the giant Christ the Redeemer statue, which many have considered it as their symbolic source of strength not just during the World Cup match but throughout their lives.
For many in Brazil, this year's World Cup will be unforgettable for hundreds if not thousands have dedicated countless hours of hard-work to prepare the nation as the host for this international festivity. While the fans may vary in their responses, the majority of those watching the tournament will experience the loss of their teams, with exception to those from the championship team. Yet the Christian message of hope in Christ prevails and true sportsmanship of perseverance and resilience from defeat shall be the beacon of hope.
For the match preview, Germany and Argentina have played 20 head-to-head matches, and Argentina won nine, drawn five, and lost six. They are tied in number of goals scored, each with 28 goals making the total 56.
The teams met at the World Cup 2010 quarterfinal at the Green Point Stadium in Cape Town, South Africa, where Germany won 4-0. Germany and Argentina will face each other again in the second consecutive World Cup, but in the final this time.
The last time Argentina and West Germany played each other in two straight World Cup finals are in 1986 and '90, where Diego Maradona and Argentina won the first, and the Germans took the second. So Sunday's match will be the tiebreaker.
In World Cup 2006 Berlin, Germany and Argentina players threw punches after Argentina lost a tense penalty shoot-out to Germany. Of the three players involved in the incident, only Argentina's Maxi Rodriguez remains.
Rodriguez, who has played for Liverpool, Atletico Madrid and Espanyol, scored his country's decisive penalty kick in the semi-final against Netherlands. Like Lionel Messi, he has played in 11 World Cup matches, making him one of the elder players in the squad.
He shared with FIFA.com on how his team has become better as the tournament continues, despite the recent injuries that ruled out Sergio Aguero and Angel di Maria. They understand that they cannot place all the burdens on Messi, although he's a game changer, but they will support him as a game changer.
"The upside is that the group is well drilled: everyone knows their role. We're ready for the challenge that's waiting for us on Sunday," he said, adding that he's not daunted by Germany's 7-1 score over Brazil, and "it's the sort of result that happens once every 100 matches.
"We have to be mindful of their threat, sure, but without losing sight of our game and how we can get at them," said the former Liverpool, Atletico Madrid and Espanyol player.
"We've all dreamed of being world champions and now we are within striking distance of doing it. We're going to fight to make it happen."
Going into the World Cup Final, Germany has played almost flawless together as team, getting goals from defenders, midfielders and forwards. While the teams realize fully what's at stake, Germany has another incentive to win the match, and that is to break the trend of no European team ever winning a World Cup played in the Americas.
Since Argentina is considered as Brazil's arch-rival, Germany assistant coach Hansi Flick hopes that the Brazilian fans will be supporting them, according to Fox News.
Germany team manager Oliver Bierhoff said that Argentina will be a different opponent compared to hosts Brazil after Germany emerged from the semi-final with a 7-1 win in Belo Horizonte.
"They defend deep, leave little space to run into and wait for (Lionel) Messi to show a moment of magic," he said, according to FIFA.com. "We have to play our own game, run the extra mile and not give them the space they need."
While winning or losing is largely determined by the teams' skills and effectiveness in playing as a unit, Argentina's goalkeeper Sergio Romero did mention another important element of the game that fans and players have witnessed after so many matches played.
"It's luck, that's the truth," Argentina's goalkeeper Sergio Romero said of the penalty kicks shoot-out victory over Netherlands on Wednesday. "You can dive and not make it, like their goalkeeper did. I had confidence, and thank God things turned out well."
The preview of the highly-anticipated finale will begin at 10 a.m. PST and the match at 12 p.m. PST, and both can be watched online and on mobile devices through live stream via ABC.
ESPN is also providing live streaming of the World Cup 2014 Closing Ceremony and the Germany vs. Argentina Final match on WatchESPN at ESPN3.
Univision will televise the match in Spanish on Univision Deportes, and ESPN Deportes will televise the game in Portugese.
And Univision will also provide the Germany vs. Argentina World Cup Final live stream here.