Classic 3️⃣ points: Brazil beat Germany to lift the 2002 World Cup


Dan Burke

Article image: Classic 3️⃣ points: Brazil beat Germany to lift the 2002 World Cup

If Onefootball had been around 18 years ago, here’s what we might have made of the 2002 World Cup final …

Brazil have been crowned world champions for the fifth time thanks to a 2-0 victory over Germany in an absorbing World Cup final.

Here are three points of interest from Yokohama …

It had to be Ronaldo

Football doesn’t always provide second chances of this magnitude but today Ronaldo got his, and he grabbed it with both hands.

Four years ago, a mysterious medical issue the night before the final meant he ambled around the Stade de France pitch in a trance and failed to prevent his side succumbing to a devastating 3-0 defeat.

But thankfully, the only drama ahead of this final came courtesy of the Inter Milan striker’s dramatic new hairstyle …

Ronaldo may have feared he was in for another frustrating final after he fluffed not one but three great chances to score in the first half.

But Lady Luck smiled on him when he was the fortunate recipient of a goalkeeping spillage for the opening goal in the 67th minute.

And before long it was wham, bam, thank you ma’am when Ronaldo slotted home his second goal to effectively put the final to bed.

Those goals put him top of the all-time World Cup scorers chart with eight – a record which is unlikely to be broken for quite some time.

Brazil have finally banished the demons of France ’98 but more than anything, this was Ronaldo’s retribution.

If those rumours about Real Madrid being interested in him are true, the Champions League winners could well be an unstoppable force next season.

And we have a feeling that haircut could spark a new fashion craze too.

A tale of two goalkeepers

Spare a thought for Oliver Kahn.

Having had a near flawless tournament before today, Germany’s goalkeeper and captain picked a terrible time to make one of the most regrettable mistakes of his career.

Rivaldo’s shot for the opening goal seemed the sort of innocuous effort Kahn would usually have gobbled up with no fuss, but he somehow fumbled the ball straight at Ronaldo’s feet, and the striker could hardly believe his luck as he tapped home.

The look on the goalkeeper’s face as he slumped against the post at the final whistle said it all.

The Bayern Munich man turned 33 just over a fortnight ago and though he’s far from finished yet, he just might be by the time the next World Cup rolls around in 2006.

What a terrible shame it would be if a goalkeeper of Kahn’s greatness ended his career having never won the World Cup.

But a goalkeeper who doesn’t have to worry about such a thing is Brazil’s Marcos, who made a number of fine saves to preserve his clean sheet in Yokohama and had the goalposts come to his aid on a couple of occasions too.

A fitting finale to an amazing summer of football

What a brilliant tournament it has been in Japan and South Korea.

We didn’t always enjoy getting up at the crack of dawn to watch some of those group stage matches, but we loved everything else about it, and even that Fevernova ball grew on us eventually!

It’s been a World Cup full of unforgettable moments.

There was David Beckham’s penalty against Argentina …

Ronaldinho’s lob over David Seaman …

Miroslav Klose’s hat-trick of headers against Saudi Arabia …

Hong Myung-bo’s penalty against Spain to make South Korea the first side from outside Europe or South America to reach a World Cup semi-final …

… and much, much more.

Luiz Felipe Scolari’s Seleção were worthy winners in the end but Germany played their part in the final, and how Rudi Völler must now be wishing he had been able to call upon the suspended Michael Ballack in Yokohama.

Paris Saint-Germain’s Ronaldinho is surely destined for bigger and better things but we are actually more excited about Kléberson and Roque Júnior.

Take it from us, on the evidence of this final, those two have very, very bright futures ahead of them.