By Oliver Trust
BERLIN, July 9 (Xinhua) -- Maybe even the experienced German players felt like they were in a weird dream. They have been reminded: Football can deliver miracles.
And: There are games in football that are like a natural phenomenon one can' t explain. The humiliating 7-1 (halftime 5-0) defeat of World Cup hosts Brazil came close.
For Germany it was a game full of records. Not only that Thomas Mueller notched his fifth tournament goal when opening the score, it was also Germany' s 2000th in internationals. Miroslav Klose' s strike to put Germany 2-0 up in the 23rd minute made him the World Cup' s all-time top-scorer on 16 goals.
It was like a tropical tornado of abominable power that blew Brazil away. As much as the Germans must have been surprised about going 5-0 up within the space of 29 minutes (Toni Kroos 24th/26th and Sami Khedira 29th), they were also amazed at the naive attitude of Brazil' s defense. Andre Schuerrle added twice more in the second half (69th/79th) before Oscar scored a consolation goal just before the end.
Germany came along with the same starting eleven as in their game against France, meaning Philipp Lahm played as right back and Sami Khedira and Bastian Schweinsteiger took control of the defensive midfield.
But this time Khedira played a much more offensive role, pushing the German attacks forward with a sensational determination. Lahm again was a key figure at the back along with Mats Hummels and Jerome Boateng in the centre.
The so-called new German pragmatism they showed in the tournament so far was quickly a story of yesterday as the midfielders Khedira, Schweinsteiger and Kroos were generated the devastating tornado up front.
The "strikers" Mueller, Klose, Oezil had a lot of space and reminded one of the qualities they showed at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. Quickly the Germans took advantage of the space they were given by the Brazilians.
Within seconds the variability of the German team was obvious to all. With precise passes they abandoned all thoughts about defense. Maybe that was what Khedira was talking about ahead of the game when he said: "Our football became more shrewd, more mature."
Without Neymar and Thiago Silva Brazil was a plaything for the Germans. Like a surgeon having to do an emergency operation, Germany' s football was clinical that made the football world sit straight and listen.
German coach Joachim Loew substituted Hummels at half time in order to save his energy for the final next Sunday. Per Mertesacker and Schuerrle came on. That' s a message which is well worth taking a closer look at.
Like in a pre-season friendly, Germany replaced a few regulars. And even now - Brazil tried to ease the pain by scoring - German keeper Manuel Neuer came into his own to shut the hosts out. He again proved that he is one of the world' s best.
For Brazil it was not only that Neymar and Thiago Silva were missing, it was simply against all odds what happened: They opened all doors to their opponents. So far the story that World Cup told the football world was: First of all, stay back then start to think about the festival up front.
As for the final, the German team still faces a huge task. They have to forget what happened in Belo Horizonte in order to avoid misleading thoughts. They haven' t won the World Cup yet - there is one more game to go.
The final either against the Netherlands or Argentina will be a new game, and far from another natural phenomenon like the one against Brazil. That win was their first ever win in a major tournament against Brazil.
At the 2002 World Cup they lost 2-0 to a fantastic Brazil as they did twice in the Confederations Cup tournaments 1999 and 2005. This time every shot seemed to hit the back of the net.
On the other hand, it would be more than an understatement, not to see the German team as a serious candidate for winning the 2014 World Cup. Some say they are 2014 World Cup top act. Now it's on them not to lose control themselves.