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RIO DE JANEIRO – At a World Cup where substitutes have made more impact than ever, it was fitting that Mario Goetze came off the bench to win it, and another replacement supplied the inch-perfect cross.
Goetze's extra-time goal to beat Argentina and win the cup was the 32nd scored by a substitute in Brazil.
The previous best, 23 at the 2006 World Cup in Germany, is not even close.
Coming on in the 88th minute to replace Miroslav Klose, Goetze's two shots on target matched teammate Toni Kroos who played the full two hours.
Even the cross for Goetze's beautifully balanced winning strike came from another substitute, Andre Shuerrle.
Teams who used their squad well — like the third-place Netherlands and quarterfinalist Belgium — got strong finishes and crucial late goals.