Highlights - Argentina 0-4 Germany
Philipp Lahm wants to remain as Germany captain even if Michael Ballack resumes his international career.
An ankle injury ruled usual skipper Ballack, 33, out of the 2010 World Cup, handing defender Lahm, 26, the armband for the finals in South Africa.
"It's clear I would like to keep the captain's armband - I really enjoy the role," said Bayern Munich's Lahm.
Asked if the World Cup semi-finalists still needed Ballack, Lahm replied: "It's not for me to say 'yes' or 'no'."
Ballack has been with the
squad in South Africa but left late on Monday, two days before his side's semi-final meeting with Spain in Durban.
Ballack is still our captain and Lahm is now our World Cup captain - there is no discord
Oliver Bierhoff, Germany team manager
Team manager Oliver Bierhoff insisted there was no dispute between
and Ballack and that the timing of the former's interview with German newspaper Bild was unfortunate because it coincided with the latter's departure.
"But there is no discord," stated Bierhoff. "We are pleased that Lahm has taken over the responsibility as captain. And what else can he say, except that he wants to remain captain?
"Ballack is still our captain and Lahm is now our World Cup captain."
Lahm explained that he felt there was no reason to relinquish the role voluntarily, adding: "When you fulfil your role on the pitch and have it under control, as I do in my position, then you want more.
"You want more responsibility, you want to take care of the big picture. And that is the case with me now."
Bierhoff said Lahm's statement had been "over-interpreted" in the published interview and that Ballack's departure was due to "logistic reasons" because he could not have the treatment he required in South Africa.
"Ballack also did not want to add an additional burden to the team's physiotherapists," Bierhoff continued.
Ballack has been a fixture in the Germany side since his goals helped them reach the 2002 World Cup final, and he had been captain since 2004.
The midfielder will return to German football next season after signing a two-year contract with Bayer Leverkusen following his release by Chelsea at the end of the 2009-10 campaign.