This was never in doubt. Neither the result, nor Germany securing their automatic passage to the World Cup next summer and, as such, it was not an occasion that stirred the senses. There were Mexican waves from the crowd and beers in the home dressing-room afterwards yet it was more a case of Joachim Löw's team seeing the job through. Processions are rarely thrilling.
Germany dominated from the first whistle, taking a grip in midfield and squeezing hard and Löw would talk of a performance that he felt was "close to perfection," even though it was undermined by erratic finishing. The stellar moment did not come until the very last, when Mesut Özil took Toni Kroos's second assist of the evening to beat David Forde with impudent class but, really, it was a night when Germany did little more than swat aside what was in front of them.
They can travel to Sweden for Tuesday's final Group C tie without pressure and motivated, principally, to avenge the outlandish 4-4 draw from earlier in the campaign, when they had led 4-0. Those remain the only points that they have dropped. "We have a little bone to pick with the Swedes," Löw said.
Attention, however, has started to turn towards the true test of this exciting squad, to the finals in Brazil, when they will attempt to become the first European team to win a World Cup on South American soil. The threat that they carry has been extensively signposted. They gave their opponents here a lesson, without a host of injured players and without seeming to hit top gear.
It was a difficult night to assess for Ireland, who were under the caretaker charge of Noel King. They showed their "courage" and "passion," to borrow soundbites from him, while they enjoyed flickers in front of goal. They appeared to have damage limitation as their priority, which was reflected in the way that they set up, but they did go devilishly close to the reward of a goal.
They were certainly not humiliated, as they had been in the 6-1 defeat to Germany last October and which had been the pre-match fear. And yet they might have been were it not for Forde, who made a succession of brilliant saves. There was the usual vitriol from the TV pundits in Dublin, led by Eamon Dunphy, who suggested that King's team had the look of one picked by a competition winner.
"It's a comedy show," King replied. "I would be disappointed if they didn't say something like that but football people know what happened tonight. To create chances and still defend well is exceptional against such a good team."
King could be proud of the way his players responded to his instructions. They were broadly defensive but rooted in pragmatism. King loaded the midfield, with Glenn Whelan asked to graft in an unfamiliar role on the right and Kevin Doyle likewise on the left. With Marc Wilson, the left-back, in central midfield, the battle lines for a siege were marked but how else could Ireland seek to punch apart from on the counter or set pieces?
The tie's pattern was established at the outset: Germany pushing, stroking the ball about, looking for the incision while Ireland worked tirelessly. King, though, could rue the manner of the opening goal, which was a fluke, Sami Khedira's shot taking a heavy deflection off Ciaran Clark to wrong-foot Forde.
Löw had started with Özil as a false No9 and there was slick movement from his team's many creative players, with the captain Philipp Lahm a marauding presence. It was very difficult to describe him as a right-back. Lahm crossed twice for André Schürrle in the first half and on the second occasion, the Chelsea forward drew a fine stop from Forde. The goalkeeper also saved brilliantly from Thomas Müller on 38 minutes while Bastian Schweinsteiger sliced when well-placed.
Almost implausibly, Ireland might have been level at the interval, when Clark's looping header came back off the crossbar and the visitors had a few sightings early in the second half through Anthony Stokes. Löw was unhappy but Germany quickly reasserted themselves, with Schürrle getting the goal that his persistence merited. Kroos's dinked pass was stamped with high quality and Schürrle, having taken a touch and spun, guided a low shot into the far corner.
Forde made excellent saves to deny Schürrle and Khedira and he deserved his luck when Jerome Boateng's vicious drive rattled the bar. Özil also shot inches wide of the far post. King lavished praise upon Forde.
Ireland so nearly snatched something. Manuel Neuer made a double save from Stokes and Seamus Coleman while, on 89 minutes, he again denied Stokes. From the resulting corner, he clawed Clark's flashing header over the bar. The final word, however, went to Özil and Germany. Nobody could say they did not deserve it.