Argentine coach Alejandro Sabella said his team's 1-0 loss to Germany in the World Cup final today was a moment of sadness but he was also proud of their performance.
Sabella, speaking to television cameras on the sideline of the pitch, said he felt "the sadness of not being able to win the tournament, but pride for a team that played a great game."
"I congratulate the players, who are the pride of a country because of the effort they made and the tournament they had," he added.
Midfielder Javier Mascherano said: "The pain is immense. We wanted to take the Cup back to Argentina once again.
"We are gutted," he added. "We gave what we could and we are sorry for the people who came and for the people in Argentina.
"The pain will be for life because this was our opportunity," Mascherano said. "We have to lift our heads and endure the pain."
Meanwhile the Argentinian media is in a sombre mood after the defeat, although some outlets are claiming the team should have had a penalty.
El Tribuno ran the simple Spanish headline of "Dolorosa derrota" meaning "Painful defeat", while El Independiente was similarly downtrodden, going with "The dream is over".
Ole said the Germans "stole the illusion" from Argentinian fans but "despite the pain, you have to applaud [both teams]".
Clarin also said the dream was over and that Argentina had squandered a great chance to win the game in the first 20 minutes.
All four titles suggested a foul on striker Gonzalo Higuain should have resulted in a penalty, but most neutral observers might struggle to find when this occurred.
Reuters, Fairfax NZ
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