FIFA 2014

Bastian Schweinsteiger vs Toni Kroos

Javier Mascherano.

Javier Mascherano.  

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The German midfield at this World Cup is truly a once-in-a-generation one. As one writer put it, the legs, the heart and the brain of the current team are all here, in Sami Khedira, Bastian Schweinsteiger and Toni Kroos respectively.

In the semifinal, it was the duo of Khedira and Kroos which intensely pressed the Brazilian central midfield and won a crucial battle. In the final against Argentina it will encounter Lucas Biglia and Javier Mascherano.

Kroos has been Germany’s stand out player. He has shined with his technical prowess, ability to win balls, distribute them and then even move into offensive positions. 

On Sunday, when he is expected to make more forward runs, he will in all probability come face-to-face with Mascherano, the best holding midfielder in this tournament.

Against the Dutch, Mascherano often dropped very deep to collect the ball. Kroos will no doubt press but one of Argentine’s defining qualities, apart from his defending, has been his calm demeanour under severe pressure. With Fernando Gago underperforming, he has been the lynchpin.

Both Kroos and Mascherano have grown through the tournament with both reaching the zenith in their respective semifinals. One more such performance from either might decide the fate of the trophy.

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Printable version | Jan 23, 2020 9:46:44 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/football/fifa-2014/bastian-schweinsteiger-vs-toni-kroos/article6204740.ece

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