Santo Andre: Germany coach Joachim Loew believes Brazil’s players were overwhelmed by the pressure of trying to win the World Cup at home, a sentiment expressed by several current and former players after their 1-7 semi-final mauling.
Germany have gone to great lengths to shield their players from the pressures at the World Cup, setting up their base at a fortress-like purpose-built compound on a remote beach in rural north-eastern Brazil.
The relaxed and always-composed deportment of the Germany players stands in sharp contrast with the emotions exhibited and tears shed by Brazil players at the tournament, scenes that have amazed some Germans.
“Perhaps the pressure was just too much,” Loew said in an interview on the German football association (DFB) website when asked why Brazil had imploded in the first half when Germany scored five times.
“The expectations from the team in their home country might have crippled them. We know all about that from our own experience in 2006,” he said, referring to Germany's heart-breaking semi-final loss to Italy.
“That’s why I feel for my coaching counter-part Luiz Felipe Scolari, why I feel for the Brazil team and the whole Brazilian nation,” he said.
News emerged earlier in the tournament that Brazil have started using a sports psychologist to help the team amid worries about their mental state after keeper Julio Cesar and captain Thiago Silva cried.
“I talked with Dante the other day he told me the team was riding only on emotions,” said Giovane Elber, a former Brazil and Bayern Munich striker who works as a pundit for German TV, referring to the Brazil defender.