Tuesday's World Cup semi-final was rich in narratives for Brazil. The hopes and dreams of the host nation on their shoulders. Revenge, to whatever extent it was possible, for the broken vertebra Neymar suffered in the quarterfinals. 58,141 in attendance at Belo Horizonte, almost all in support of the Seleção. A 42 game unbeaten streak at home in all competitions. And Brazil needing just one more victory to reach the final and have a chance to erase the ghost of the Maracanazo, the famous 2-1 upset by Uruguay in 1950.
But after 90 minutes of defensive implosion, the 2014 result may eclipse the one from 1950. Germany obliterated Brazil 7-1, sending the Europeans to their eighth World Cup final, and leaving the hosts in complete shock.
Brazil looked up for the challenge early in the match, even after lax defending left Thomas Müller unmarked in the box to send home the opening goal just eleven minutes in.
In a span of six incredible minutes, Germany put four goals past the hosts. It started in the 23rd minute as Miroslav Klose scored his 16th career World Cup goal on a rebound, giving him the all time record and Germany a 2-0 scoreline. A minute later, a cross in the box skipped to Tony Kroos, who one-timed a left footed shot in to make it 3-0. Another minute later, Germany stripped the ball off Brazil and played a simple back and forth to allow Kroos to make it 4-0. Two minutes after that, another quick attack overpowered middle-school defending as Sami Khedira put home Germany's fifth goal.
The sight was downright unbelievable: Brazil down 5-0, and the scoreboard hadn't ticked past 30 minutes. Television coverage frequently cut to Brazilian fans in the crowd crying in disbelief, while the players looked numb with shock as each goal moved them closer and closer to not just elimination, but infamy. If Spain's 5-1 loss to the Netherlands in the group stage hailed the death of tiki-taka, then this was the death of joga bonito (although it's arguable if Brazil was playing with that style this year).
The second half was a better showing from Brazil, but for naught, as Andre Schürrle scored in the 69th and 79th minutes to give Germany a touchdown scoreline. His second was beautifully taken, an exclamation point on the night:
Brazil's only goal came only in the 90th minute, as Oscar raced downfield and cut around a single defender to save the hosts from being shut out. But it was far too little, far too late.
Germany will play in Sunday's World Cup championship match against the winner of this afternoon's semi-final between the Netherlands and Argentina. For Brazil, they do get one final chance to make amends: a third place match against the other semi-final loser takes place on Saturday. But at this point, we're not sure many Brazilians want to see them take the field again any time soon.