While Neymar was taking centre-stage, even attempting an audacious rainbow flick, Germany struck the woodwork for the third time before the break as Sven Bender stooped low to head Brandt’s out-swinging free-kick onto the frame of the goal.
The Germany attacks continued after the break, and in the 59th minute the Maracana was silenced as the game’s other captain Meyer expertly converted Jeremy Toljan’s low cross into the bottom corner. Brazil, frenetic in both attack and defence, failed to deal with the German right-back’s overlap and the Hoffenheim player was given the time to pick out Meyer to level things up.
Brazil took the game to Germany as the second half wore on. Renato Augusto, who was excellent in midfield, set up new Manchester City striker Gabriel Jesus shortly after after breaking down the right flank, but Jesus could only direct his effort just wide of the post. Neymar then sparked into life again to put through Felipe Anderson – who was about to pull the trigger when through one-on-one before Lukas Klostermann made a last-ditch tackle.
Into extra time Meyer picked out Brandt with a perfectly weighted diagonal pass and the 20-year-old looked to lob Weverton with the outside of his foot but saw his effort drift just over the bar. Felipe Anderson then had the chance to settle the tie in the second period, but poked his effort at the onrushing Horn after Neymar’s through ball.
It took penalties to decide the outcome, and after Matthias Ginter, Gnabry, Brandt and Süle scored for Germany, and Renato Augusto, Marquinhos, Rafinha and Luan also converted their spot kicks, it was substitute Grischa Proemel who saw his effort saved by Weverton and left Neymar to fire Brazil to glory – coolly planting his effort in the top corner.