FIFA World Cup™ finals history
After winning their long-awaited fourth title at the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil, Germany are tied with Italy as the second most successful footballing nation on the planet, with only five-time champions Brazil ahead of them. Germany’s first win came at Switzerland 1954, where they achieved the ‘Miracle of Bern’ despite going into the Final as underdogs. A second triumph followed on home soil in 1974 and they lifted the trophy for a third time at Italy 1990. Germany have reached the World Cup Final eight times, finishing as runners-up on four occasions (1966, 1982, 1986 and 2002) and taking the bronze medal at the 1934, 1970, 2006 and 2010 editions. No other country has played more games at the tournament than the 106 Germany have contested.

The team
The reigning world champions have managed to blend tactical flexibility and outstanding technical ability with their traditional virtues of discipline and fighting spirit. In doing so they have become admired across the globe for their dominant and attacking style of play, as well as their efficiency. Coach Joachim Low has moulded the side into an impressive unit where the team comes first. Former captain Philipp Lahm and record World Cup goalscorer Miroslav Klose both retired from international duty following the triumph at the Maracana, leaving new captain Bastian Schweinsteiger, attacker Thomas Muller and world-class goalkeeper Manuel Neuer as the side’s leaders. Midfielder Toni Kroos is becoming an increasingly key figure, while technically gifted players such as Mesut Ozil, Mario Gotze and Marco Reus can decide a game in an instant.

The coach
After taking over from Jurgen Klinsmann in the wake of the 2006 World Cup, Low has honed Germany’s new attacking philosophy. The Black Forest native narrowly missed out on glory at the 2008 and 2012 European Championships, as well as at the 2010 World Cup, before succeeding at the 2014 tournament. Now he is striving to ensure the future is equally bright. “The big challenge is to stay at the top,” he said in an interview with FIFA.com. “Winning a title is fantastic but repeating it is tough.”

The stat
224 – The total number of goals Germany have scored in World Cup finals history, putting them three ahead of Brazil as the top-scoring nation.

The former stars
Fritz Walter, Uwe Seeler, Franz Beckenbauer, Gerd Muller, Lothar Matthaus, Oliver Kahn, Philipp Lahm, Miroslav Klose