Moments frozen in time
Plays from the World Cup that have endured over the years
By MORRIS DALLA COSTA, QMI Agency
More than any other sport, football's history is a myriad of snapshots — moments that are frozen in time and define the sport creating legends of its players.
Soccer fans know that Brazil has won the World Cup five times, but their lasting memories are of Carlos Alberto's goal in the 1970 World Cup, considered the best team goal in World Cup history.
They remember a distraught Paul Gascoigne in 1990 during an England-West Germany semifinal. Gascoigne received a yellow card that guaranteed he would miss the final if England made it. Television cameras caught Gascoigne weeping on the field as the game went on around him.
They remember the childlike joy on Marco Tardelli's face as he scored Italy's second goal in the 1982 World Cup final against Germany.
Football fans remember the pictures, the stories, the events, the joy and the anger of those World Cup moments. They never get tired reliving them.
It doesn't take much to kick-start those memories.
Goals that keep on giving:
It was 1986 in Mexico during a tournament that lacked a defining moment. In a short span in the second half of an Argentina/England quarterfinal, the tournament suddenly had two.
It was 0-0 in the 51st minute when Diego Maradona took things into his own hands.
The 5-foot-5 forward somehow managed to beat England keeper Peter Shilton to the ball and directed it into the net. That's because he punched it into the net.
Tunisian Ali Bin Nasser allowed the goal and in subsequent years said hemorrhoid medicine he was taking caused him to miss the infraction.
It was scored "a little with the head of Maradona and a little with the hand of God," said the Argentine star, earning him the enmity of English fans forever.
Four minutes later, Maradona took the ball inside his own half, beat five English defenders to score a goal voted the goal of the century.
England has its own infamous goal to deal with. The moment happened in the 1966 World Cup final in England, with England and West Germany in extra time tied at 2-2. England striker Geoff Hurst launches a shot that strikes the crossbar and the ball comes straight down.
Goal or no goal?
The officials conferred and allowed the goal. England went on to win the game 4-2 and their only World Cup. Subsequent replays over the years showed the ball never crossed the line.
Two legends are born:
It's 1958 in Sweden and the French team with Just Fontaine is a powerhouse. Fontaine scores 13 goals in the tournament. But in the end, it's a coming out party for the Samba boys from Brazil and Pele. It would be Brazil's first World Cup win and the 17-year-old Edison Arantes do Nascimento scored six goals including a hat trick in the semifinal against France. The soccer world was introduced to the beauty of Brazilian-style football. The tournament ended with the iconic picture of Pele being carried off the field on the shoulders of his teammates and fans.
The 1970 World Cup was Pele's fourth World Cup. Brazil and England met in a group match in Guadalajara. Pele leaps high to meet a cross and his header looks a sure goal as it flies to the corner. English keeper Gordon Banks dives and extends his hand, tipping it around the post. It is perhaps the finest save in World Cup history. Pele turned to Banks and applauded him.
The soccer world turned upside down:
There have been some shocking upsets in World Cup history. There is no expiration date on those moments as teams are forced to live them over and over again. The snapshot of those upsets is as vivid as if it happened yesterday.
The 1950 World Cup in Brazil saw the United States' Joe Gaetjens direct a ball into the back of England's net. It was the winner. England lost their next game and was eliminated from the competition.
It was England's first World Cup. It refused to participate in earlier World Cups because as
so-called inventors of the game, England felt they were too good.
The 1982 tournament in Spain had West Germany as 3-1 favourites. Algeria was playing its first World Cup game and was touted at 1000-1. Algeria shocked the Germans with a 2-1 win. That loss would lead to another watershed moment in World Cup history.
It was 1966 in England. Two-time World champs Italy faced North Korea, a first-time participant. Pak Doo Ik scored the only goal eliminating the world soccer power. Italy attempted to sneak home by taking a flight that landed in the middle of the night. It didn't work. A large group of "fans" pelted them with tomatoes.
The fix was in:
When Algeria upset West Germany, it put the Africans in a position to qualify for the second round. The only result that would eliminate Algeria was a 1-0 win for the Germans over Austria. Ten minutes
into the game, the Austrians give up an easy goal.
You guessed it. That's the way the game ended.
Algerian fans waved money from the crowd. The obvious fix caused FIFA from that point on to play the final group games beginning at the same time.
The fist was in:
The Battle of Santiago in the 1962 game between Italy and Chile may have been the most violent game played. Chile won but well-known commentator David Coleman called the game "the most stupid, appalling, disgusting and disgraceful exhibition of football, possibly in the history of the game." Two players were sent off, noses were broken, fists flew and police had to intervene three times. English referee Dave Ashton would say later "I wasn't reffing a football match, I was acting as an umpire in military maneuvers."
Ashton eventually invented the yellow and red cards used in football.