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Proposing a radical rule addition to protect players

The best World Cup ever? Not if you are concerned about player safety.

Brazil Diary: Germans bring joy to Rio

Two sets of fans on the subway leaving the Maracana station on Sunday night wore German replica jerseys. One group sang loudly and danced around while the other watched before finally joining in.

Soccer America's World Cup Best XI

In a tournament with so many twists and turns, it isn't easy to come up with a World Cup Best XI. Over the tournament's 32 days, there were many outstanding individual performances but not a lot of consistency. Even champion Germany mixed great with not-so-great performances in its seven matches. The choices for World Cup Best XI, as selected by ...

Germany-Argentina Player Ratings

A gripping World Cup final ended with a superb goal by Mario Goetze that earned Germany its fourth world title. He was just one of many players on both squads who responded admirably to the big occasion.

Germany is Weltmeister, deservedly

RIO DE JANEIRO -- Mario Goetze, who was born nearly two years after Germany last won the World Cup, struck a left-footed volley into the Argentine net to give Germany its fourth world championship.


The 10 best things about the 2014 World Cup

Brazil 2014 has been the best World Cup of our lifetime. Beginning with the first three days that produced four comeback wins, the World Cup was, to borrow a line from ESPN's Jon Champion, the gift that kept on giving. From the dramatic -- half the knockout games weren't decided until stoppage time or overtime -- to the ...

Brazil Diary: Meeting Pele

Life is good. On Saturday I had the offer of a free sandwich and a roundtable discussion with Pele.

Dutch pile more misery onto Brazil's nightmare

Few Brazilian fans could have foreseen how hosting the World Cup would end, with a depressing 3-0 loss in the third-place game.

Brazil Diary: Lost in translation but loving it

I find Brazilian Portuguese to be a beautiful language. The woman's voice coming over the P.A. at Sao Paulo's Rodoviaria Tiete bus terminal, reading departures and arrivals, sounds like a lovely song, which is what I first thought it was.

Very different impressions left of two previous Argentina-Germany finals

There were common elements to the 1986 and 1990 World Cup finals. Both were contested by Argentina and West Germany, which fielded many of the same players, including Diego Maradona and Lothar Matthaeus, respectively, in both competitions, but they left very different impressions.

Germany's not so secret key to success

It has been 24 years since Germany won its last World Cup and 18 years since it lifted a major trophy, the 1996 European Championship.

Brazil Diary: Argentines taunt while Brazilians embrace Germany

You think Brazilians will pull for their South American neighbors in the World Cup final against Germany? Fuhgeddaboudit.

Dutch run out of ideas as Argentines advance

The Dutch came into the semifinal after going 120 scoreless minutes against Costa Rica and needing a shootout to advance. The Argentines mustered only one goal against Belgium in their 1-0 round of 16 win.


Brazil Diary: National Tragedy? No. Massive Shame? Yes

Sao Paulo's Mercado Municipal da Cantareira -- the biggest market in the world's third largest metropolis - opened at 6 a.m., the morning after a 7-1 loss to Germany in Belo Horizonte emphatically ended Brazil's World Cup hopes.

Netherlands-Argentina: Memories of 1978 and 1998

When Argentina and the Netherlands are mentioned in World Cup conversations, their showdown in the 1978 final usually crops up first. As it should. But they also played a classic 20 years later.