World Cup 2014: Mesut Ozil and Mario Gotze go selfie crazy amid air-guitars, congas and cheers as Germany team arrive in Berlin

Half a million fans acclaim returning Germany squad  at the Brandenburg Gate

Berlin

Almost half a million fans lined the streets for Germany’s World Cup victory parade to the Brandenburg Gate here on Tuesday and were treated to some bizarre party antics from their heroes.

After an 11-hour flight back from Brazil, delayed for two hours after a baggage carrier collided with the aircraft, the Germany squad flew in low over the “fan mile”, where the public had been gathering since the previous evening.

Read more: Messi suffers humiliation of passing trophy twice
Match report: Germany 1 Argentina 0
Maradona: Messi won award because of 'marketing'

After landing at Berlin’s Tegel airport, the Germany captain Philipp Lahm led the team off the aircraft holding the trophy aloft, followed by Bastian Schweinsteiger, who was draped in the German flag and sporting a bandage under his right eye after getting a cut to the face in the final against Argentina.

The team then set off on a two-hour trip to downtown Berlin in a black bus which had been painted with the years of Germany’s World Cup victories: “1954, 1974, 1990, 2014!”

The players all changed into matching black T-shirts bearing the number “1”, then climbed on board an open-top bus for the last stage of a journey that has lasted 24 years since their previous World Cup triumph.

Then the squad took to the stage at the famous landmark, to be greeted with chants from the crowd of “football gods”. But there were problems with the sound system, which meant that most of the players’ words were lost in the din. The fans cheered louder then ever when defender and Berlin-born Jérôme Boateng shouted: “I can’t hear you!”

In a rehearsed piece of stage theatrics, Lahm had emerged concealed by four of his team-mates, who walked out with heads bowed and arms behind their backs. Then the quartet suddenly fell to the ground while the captain held the trophy aloft to the cheering crowd.

 

The squad then started to dance and play air-guitar before kicking little replicas of the World Cup football Brazuca into the crowd and performing a conga around the stage, led by Schweinsteiger triumphantly holding the trophy aloft.

“We’re all world champions!” the Germany coach Joachim Löw said. “Of course, it was a long way to the title, and an incredibly tough one in the end. But we’re incredibly happy to be here with the fans now.”

Midfielder Toni Kroos led the crowd in a chant of “Miro Klose” – a tribute to veteran striker Miroslav Klose, who became the World Cup finals’ leading scorer during the tournament with 16 goals.

“We’re just mega proud of this achievement, after standing here in 2006 and 2008 as third and then as second – and now we’ve finally done it after this long journey, with this sensational team,” the Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker said, while Chelsea striker André Schürrle added: “It’s beautiful. It feels very good, it’s all gone perfectly for us.”

Video: Germany win fourth World Cup

Striker Thomas Müller posted a “selfie” in front of the crowd on Twitter, and said: “Waaaaaaaahhhhnnnnnssiiiiiiinnn! [Insanity] Thank you for this great reception! Dear fans, you are a champion!”

The president of the German Football Association (DFB), Wolfgang Niersbach, said of the squad’s reception. “This is a dream. Seeing this enthusiasm, I do not know what in our country can trigger this sense of belonging more than this World Cup. Our players are looking forward incredibly to enjoying this moment.”

Fans agreed. “It’s indescribable,” said Till Uhlig from Hannover, who was among the throng. “They’ve all taken their holidays to come here. It’s absolutely crazy. We were behind the stage where the bus pulled up. Just incredible.”

Berliner Katrin Fels added: “We knew it would happen. It was clear from the start of the year that we had the best team. It’s perfect, perfect for all generations.”

 

Voices
The Sumatran tiger, endemic to the Indonesian island of Sumatra, is an endangered species
voicesJonathon Porritt: The wild tiger population is thought to have dropped by 97 per cent since 1900
News
The Swiss Re tower or 'Gherkin' was at one time the UK’s most expensive office when German bank IVG and private equity firm Evans Randall bought it
news
Arts and Entertainment
tv
News
Gardai wait for the naked man, who had gone for a skinny dip in Belfast Lough
newsTwo skinny dippers threatened with inclusion on sex offenders’ register as naturists criminalised
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
Van Gaal said that his challenge in taking over Bobby Robson's Barcelona team in 1993 has been easier than the task of resurrecting the current United side
football
Sport
Moeen Ali wearing the 'Save Gaza' and 'Free Palestine' wristbands on his left arm
cricket
Arts and Entertainment
The Great British Bake Off 2014 contestants
tv
Life and Style
tech
Arts and Entertainment
filmThe Battle of the Five Armies trailer released
News
news
Arts and Entertainment
Beast would strip to his underpants and take to the stage with a slogan scrawled on his bare chest whilst fans shouted “you fat bastard” at him
musicIndie music promoter was was a feature at Carter gigs
Arts and Entertainment
Story line: Susanoo slays the Yamata no Orochi serpent in the Japanese version of a myth dating back 40,000 years
arts + entsApplying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
Extras
indybest
News
Performers dressed as Tunnocks chocolate teacakes, a renowned Scottish confectionary, perform during the opening ceremony of the 2014 Commonwealth Games at Celtic Park in Glasgow on July 23, 2014.
news
Life and Style
Popular plonk: Lambrusco is selling strong
Food + drinkNaff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz
Life and Style
Shake down: Michelle and Barack Obama bump knuckles before an election night rally in Minnesota in 2008, the 'Washington Post' called it 'the fist bump heard round the world'
newsThe pound, a.k.a. the dap, greatly improves hygiene
Arts and Entertainment
La Roux
music
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

The air strikes were tragically real

The children were playing in the street with toy guns
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

Britain as others see us

Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
Countries that don’t survey their tigers risk losing them altogether

Countries that don’t survey their tigers risk losing them

Jonathon Porritt sounds the alarm
How did our legends really begin?

How did our legends really begin?

Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

Lambrusco is back on the menu

Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz
A new Russian revolution: Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc

A new Russian revolution

Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
Eugene de Kock: Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

The debate rages in South Africa over whether Eugene de Kock should ever be released from jail
Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?

Standing my ground

If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
Commonwealth Games 2014: Dai Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Welsh hurdler was World, European and Commonwealth champion, but then the injuries crept in
Israel-Gaza conflict: Secret report helps Israelis to hide facts

Patrick Cockburn: Secret report helps Israel to hide facts

The slickness of Israel's spokesmen is rooted in directions set down by pollster Frank Luntz
The man who dared to go on holiday

The man who dared to go on holiday

New York's mayor has taken a vacation - in a nation that has still to enforce paid leave, it caused quite a stir, reports Rupert Cornwell
Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
The Guest List 2014: Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks

The Guest List 2014

Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

Jokes on Hollywood

With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on