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Wellingtonians and visitors get excited for FIFA World Cup final

Jul 14th, 2014 | By | Category: Front Page Layout, Lead Story, News, Sport


Created with flickr slideshow.

 

 

WELLINGTON’S bars were busy this morning as football fans gathered all over the city to watch the World Cup final.

After a long and tense match where both teams struggled to score, German fans were finally rewarded for their patience as the winning goal was scored in extra time.

With just minutes to spare, Mario Gotze scored the first and only goal of the match, winning the Cup for Germany for the first time in 24 years.

At Wellington bar Five Stags, one Germany supporter was confident from the beginning that his team would win. “Germany are going to be too strong. Their defence will shut down Messi.”

However German Ambassador Anne-Marie Schleich, who was watching at The Grand, wasn’t so sure and said she believed the match could go either way.

The Grand hosted both German and Argentinian embassy staff and an air of friendly rivalry defined the atmosphere throughout the game.

The Courtney Place sports bar was overrun with excited fans decked out in team colours.

Spanish curse words flew through the air and fans held their heads in their hands as Argentina missed several opportunities to score but the excitement of the fans never wavered throughout the match.

Although Argentina supporters were more vocal in their spectatorship, the elation of Germany supporters was unrivaled as they rose as one to celebrate, at last, a goal.

Brazil’s Ambassador Eduardo Gradilone was quick to shake his German counter- part’s hand in congratulations (and, most likely, relief).

For the fans gathered at Cuba St’s Argentinian bar and restaurant, El Matador, the day started off well.

The young crowd, dressed casually rather than in team colours, enjoyed coffee and pastries while watching the game on the venue’s one television.

The relaxed atmosphere became tense, though, as Argentina came close to scoring several times only to have the ball go out of play.

At half time one supporter described the game as being on a knife’s edge, and many began to pin their hopes on star player Lionel Messi to bring their team victory.

This faith was held to the end.

“Don’t speak yet. Messi’s still out there,” said one Argentina fan as the CBD bar Bruhaus erupted in cheers around him after Germany’s goal.

El Matador café owner Mike Marsland says Argentinian supporters could teach Kiwis a thing or two.

“They make All Black supporters look like a bunch of wimps.”

He says the passion of Argentinian football fans is incomparable.

“We put up the event up on out Facebook page and then the phone started ringing non-
stop, I decided not to take reservations.”

The bar’s 150 person capacity was stretched to its limit with fans crammed inside.

Marsland was supporting neither side, and was just content with a good game of football.

“Football is the winner on the day.”

 

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IT’S A GOAL: German fans go wild at The Grand. IMAGE: Finn Rainger

 

 

Meanwhile in the suburbs…

Lize Immelman spends the FIFA World Cup Final in a house full of Germans:

The Kreft-Dümlein’s warm home in Mirimar is a far cry from the rowdy crowds gathering in Wellington’s bars for the World Cup final between Germany and Argentina, this morning.

Wibke Kreft and Georg Dümlein hosted friends and family for a breakfast of what they hope would be champions.

Guests included brother Steffen Kreft and his Wellingtonian partner, William Connor, who had to leave Greytown early to arrive on time for the 7am kick off.

It was a good thing striker, Gonzalo Higuain, was off-side when he put the ball into the net – it would have been too much for the happy bunch to see the Argentinian team lead 30 minutes into the game.

Grandmother Margot Kreft-Kötter, who is visiting from Germany, is delighted to have her family together.

She is in New Zealand to visit her five-week-old grandson, Moritz, and she is the football expert in the room.

At 07:49 defender Benedikt Howedes’ header smacks off the post and Ms Kreft-Kötter is gutted.

A brief respite from the massive projector screen sees everyone enjoy warm croissants and creamy flapjacks at half-time.

Fellow Germans Daniel Zettl and Brenzen Fuerst apologises that “the special German sausages weren’t ordered in time”.

Words like “boring” and “slow” are bandied about as the second half gets underway. Everyone agrees though that both teams were giving their all in an evenly matched game.

And finally as the game moves into extra time, there’s absolute joy and relief as midfielder Mario Götze scores the winning goal.

But everyone agrees that it was always Germany who would be taking the cup home today.

FINAL WHISTLE: Germans win (from left) Wibke Kreft, Margot Kreft-Kötter, Steffen Kreft, William Connor, Daniel Zettl, Mila Zettl, Leonie Zettl, Brenzen Fuerst (rear) Georg Dümlein. IMAGE: Lize Immelman.

FINAL WHISTLE: Germans win (from left) Wibke Kreft, Margot Kreft-Kötter, Steffen Kreft, William Connor, Daniel Zettl, Mila Zettl, Leonie Zettl, Brenzen Fuerst (rear) Georg Dümlein. IMAGE: Lize Immelman.

The NewsWire team included: Sam Worthington, YC Lee, Sue Teodoro, Fran Jago, Hayley Gastmeier, Jonty Dine, Matthew Lau, Nicole Adamson, Amanda Herrera, Amanda Carrington, Finn Rainger, Eddy Kerr-Hislopo, Sarah Wilson, Liam Cavanagh, Lize Immelman, Tess Nichol, Josh Price, Ashleigh Manning, Steven Read.

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