MANILA, Philippines – National football team head coach Thomas Dooley was delighted by Germany's victory in the 2014 World Cup and believes the Philippine Azkals stand to learn a lot from how Die Mannschaft played.
Dooley hosted a viewing of the World Cup Final between Germany and Argentina early Monday morning, which Germany won after Mario Götze scored in extra time.
"It's amazing, and I think that Germany deserved it," said Dooley, who was born in Germany but played for the United States national team. "In the last four years they had some great games and great tournaments, but they didn't win anything. Now, they deserve it."
Dooley said that while Götze was the hero of the final, it took a total team effort for Germany to lift the World Cup.
"Obviously, he (Götze) will be in the picture because he scored the goal, but the recognition is with the team," said Dooley.
"I always say that for me, Germany is the best soccer country… Brazil has the best individual players, so that's what makes it even more special for Germany. They don't have the best players, but they have the best team," he added.
According to Dooley, this is something that the Azkals can take away from Germany's World Cup campaign.
"That's something that we can learn from, that we don't need the best players, but (we need) to play as a team, play a hundred percent and put your effort into the team," he pointed out. "Stay organized, everybody knows what they need to do in their position, and bring your hundred percent."
Aside from this, Dooley said he hoped his players were able to see the level of physicality at the World Cup, and understand the need to be fully fit in order to play at the highest level of the game.
"Hopefully, they were watching, and I can show them just how much physical and body contact you have, with these players holding and pushing," said Dooley. "The other thing is, we need to be an athlete. You need to be a hundred percent fit. When you look at the forwards, they look like sprinters. They look like body-builders and they are fast."
Azkals team manager Dan Palami, who watched the game with Dooley and some players at the Discovery Suites, said he hopes to see the Philippines play in the World Cup "in my lifetime."
"It will take a while, but I'm hoping na with the resurgence of interest in football – may mga bata na tayo na naglalaro – and I think in a few years' time we will be a strong contender at least dito sa Asia," he said.
"To be realistic, it will take a while, but you never know," he added.