World Cup 2010 - Capello: Disallowed goal the key
With the score 2-1, Frank Lampard fired a shot that hit the crossbar and then dropped well over the line.
With England just having pulled a goal back after Germany had taken a two-goal lead, Uruguayan referee Jorge Larrionda, guided by linesman and compatriot Pablo Fandino, decreed the ball had not crossed the line.
A television replay showed it clearly had by about a metre.
"It was the most important part of the game," Capello said of the decision.
"We made some mistakes and the referee made one big mistake but Germany played a good game. Little things decide the result of these matches always. We played well up to 2-1 but after the third goal we were disappointed."
Lampard had blasted the ball from about 40 metres out, beating German goalkeeper Manuel Neuer. After coming down from the bar, it bounced out of the goal into Neuer's arms.
The incident drew comparison with the third England goal from Geoff Hurst in the 1966 final against West Germany, which Germans still say never crossed the line after his shot came down off the crossbar and has been debated ever since. England went on to win 4-2.
The incident will enter the annals of the long rivalry between England and Germany. It will also add fuel to arguments that FIFA should use video technology to help referees in contested situations.