Germany survived a whirlwind assault by Chile and capitalised on an awful mistake by the South Americans to claim a 1-0 win in a pulsating, bad-tempered Confederations Cup final on Sunday.
Lars Stindl scored the only goal into an empty net in the 20th minute after Chile midfielder Marcelo Diaz gave the ball away on the edge of his own penalty area. Chile, playing with its trademark high octane style and driven forward by another relentless display by Arturo Vidal, dominated the match but was let down by poor finishing.
There was a controversial incident involving video technology in the second half when Chile defender Gonzalo Jara elbowed Timo Werner by the touchline. Serbian referee Milorad Mazic initially missed the incident, was alerted to it by the video assistants and then let Jara off with a yellow card instead of showing a red.
Shortly afterwards, Mazic turned down Chilean appeals for a penalty, stood by his original decision after another review incident and booked Eduardo Vargas for drawing an imaginary television screen. It was a remarkable achievement for Germany to lift the trophy with a young, experimental squad, although it could also be a bad omen as no team has ever won the World Cup after winning the Confederations Cup the year before.
Chile flew into the game in its inimitable style and Alexis Sanchez should have put them in front, but shot wide from close range after keeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen parried Vidal's shot. Germany struck almost immediately as Diaz lost the ball on the edge of his penalty area to Timo Werner who slipped it through for Stindl to score into an open goal.
Chile kept missing its chances, continued to look vulnerable on the break and nearly gifted Germany another goal before halftime when Jara gave the ball away in defence, but this time Claudio Bravo saved Leon Goretzka's shot.
Germany was happy to contain Chile and play on their mistakes in the second half, although they were living dangerously at times. Substitute Angelo Sagal scooped the ball over the bar from close range and Ter Stegen pushed away an Alexis Sanchez free kick in almost the last action of the game.
- Al Nassr vs Al Riyadh LIVE SCORE, Saudi Pro League: NAS 1-0 RYD, Cristiano Ronaldo scores from Mane assist
- Russia says IOC rules for Russian athletes ‘discriminatory’
- Real Madrid boss Ancelotti expecting Vinicius to return in January
- Volleyball Club World Championship: Ahmedabad Defenders loses to reigning champion Sicoma Perugia, out of semis race
- Olympic chiefs give green light to participation of Russian athletes as neutrals