BELO HORIZONTE, Brazil (AP) — With Neymar out injured, just about everyone in Brazil knew it would be tough against Germany.
Nobody ever expected this.
Germans tore apart Brazil's porous defense time and time again Tuesday,
routing the hosts 7-1 in the World Cup semifinals, the largest margin
of defeat at this stage in the history of the tournament.
wanted to make the people happy ... unfortunately we couldn't," said
Brazil defender David Luiz, who had scored in each of the last two
matches. "We apologize to all Brazilians."
scoreline is sure to overshadow Miroslav Klose's record-setting 16th
career World Cup goal. The strike pushed Klose past Brazil great
Ronaldo, who was at the Mineirao Stadium on Tuesday as the Germans
advanced to their eighth World Cup final.
Germany will face either
Argentina or the Netherlands on Sunday at the Maracana Stadium in Rio
de Janeiro with a chance to win for the fourth time.
playing without Neymar, the team's key player and the poster boy for the
World Cup. He scored four goals in the group stage, but Brazil's attack
seemed to get weaker and weaker as the tournament progressed. The
Barcelona striker was ruled out of the tournament with a broken vertebra
after getting kneed in the back in the quarterfinal win over Colombia,
weakening the sputtering attack even more.
With Neymar sidelined
and captain Thiago Silva suspended, the collective hopes of a nation
remained high even if expectations were lowered.
The atmosphere at
the start of the match was spine-tingling, but the euphoria of the
yellow-shirted thousands soon turned to tears as the Germans scored five
goals in the first 30 minutes — four of them in a seven-minute span.
"It was very important to stay calm, cool and courageous in facing Brazilian passion," Germany coach Joachim Loew said.
loss matched Brazil's most-lopsided defeat ever, and it's the first
time the team has lost in an official competitive match on home soil
since 1975, when Peru won 3-1 at the very same stadium in the Copa
America. Its last loss at home came in a friendly with Paraguay in 2002.
Brazil's biggest World Cup loss was 3-0 to France in the 1998 final. In
the 1920 the South American championship, the predecessor of the Copa
America, Brazil lost 6-0 to Uruguay.
"The responsibility for this catastrophic result is mine," Brazil coach Luiz Felipe Scolari said. "I was in charge."
It was Germany's biggest World Cup win since routing Saudi Arabia 8-0 in a group match in 2002.
Tuesday, with Bernard playing as the third striker in the place of
Neymar, Brazil attacked from the start. But they failed to get any solid
chances, and it wasn't long before the Germans opened up the defense
and started the rout.
Toni Kroos and Andre Schuerrle scored two goals each, while Thomas Mueller and Sami Khedira added the others.
Oscar pulled a late goal back for Brazil.
was shocked after the goals, they did not expect that. They did not
know what to do," Loew said. "Their defense was not organized. A little
humbleness would not hurt now."
Klose scored his record goal in
the 23rd minute to make it 2-0. The German had his original shot saved,
but he followed up as Brazil goalkeeper Julio Cesar spilled the ball,
easily scoring from the rebound.
Kroos scored his first goal in
the 25th minute, knocking in a cross from Philipp Lahm that bypassed
Mueller in the middle. He made it 4-0 a minute later, beating Cesar
after a defensive mistake from Fernandinho left the ball on the feet of
Mueller scored the first goal, one-timing a corner from
Kroos past Cesar in the 11th minute. Khedira made it 5-0 in the 29th,
taking a pass from Mesut Ozil and again beating Cesar.
minutes went wrong in the game and Germany did really well," Scolari
said. "It's a chaotic and terrible defeat ... but we have to learn from
Schuerrle, who came on for Klose in the 58th minute, scored
from a cross by Lahm in the 69th, and then knocked a shot off the
underside of the crossbar and into the net in the 79th.
first time Brazil had allowed five goals in a World Cup match since the
1938 tournament in France, when the team beat Poland 6-5 in extra time.
In previous World Cup semifinal matches, the largest margin of defeat was five goals, occurring on three occasions.
"The German quality is very, very high," Scolari said. "This is not normal."
Julio Cesar; Maicon, Dante, David Luiz, Marcelo; Luiz Gustavo,
Fernandinho (Paulinho, 46), Oscar; Bernard, Fred (Willian, 69), Hulk
Germany: Manuel Neuer; Philipp Lahm, Mats Hummels
(Per Mertesacker, 46), Jerome Boateng, Benedikt Hoewedes; Sami Khedira
(Julian Draxler, 76), Bastian Schweinsteiger, Toni Kroos, Mesut Ozil,
Thomas Mueller; Miroslav Klose (Andre Schuerrle, 58).