It was the tenth world final, the fifth in which a South American team did not intervene and the first in history in which the same nation presented two teams: West Germany and East Germany. One was champion, the other had the merit of being the only one to beat her
It was the last World Cup Stanley Rouss. Before the final was played, he had already lost the FIFA presidency and a fundamental change would come about in the history of football: he entered Joao Havelange, Who would universalize this sport and, above all, the World Cups?. Hollanda new emerging power, had sent to play for third place Brazilgreat dominator of the time.
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The 1974 world final couldn’t have had better protagonists. The Netherlands had six Ajax players (Cruyff had already played one season in the Barcelona, but it comes from nine years in ethe ajax and eight in the National Team with the same coach and the same teammates).
The others were Suurbier, Haan, Krol, Neeskens and Johnny Rep). Johan was one of them. Germany presented six from Bayern: Maier, Beckenbauer, Schwarzenbeck, Breitner, Uli Hoeness and Gerd Muller. With the following addition: Ajax had won the European Cups in 1971-72-73 and Bayern would be titled in 1974-75 and 76.
The maximum possible European constellation. For the better, the half dozen from Bayern were playing at home: the Olympian from Munich. That she was on top. The 75,200 spectators will be able to see a historical event in situ: the exchange of pennants between two inhabitants of the football Olympus: Franz Beckenbauer and Johan Cruyff.
It was a precious duel due to the quality of the protagonists and the tension with which it was played. They were two machines. For the record, we are analyzing it 49 years later, without the emotion of the moment and out of circumstance, the latter so relevant. Soccer was already beginning to be similar to the current one. Not with today’s speed and technique. After having swept the previous matches, the Netherlands arrived with the favorite sign, even though it was the local, what a local…! Germany. The game was very, very balanced, and the winner was the one who knew how to score one more goal.
One event ended up being decisive: Helmuth Schön assigned a specialist in pressure marks –Berti Vogts- to chase Johan Cruyff, a brilliant demon. Aware of the tactical move, Cruyff sent all his teammates to come forward and he (centre forward) stayed in the middle of the field, so Vogts did not follow him. He passed the ball to Cruyff, started with everything from the center circle, already packed, eluded Vogts and when he entered the area Bonhof brought him down: a clear penalty.
Neeskens executed it too much in the middle, but Maier jumped before a point and the Netherlands was winning 1-0 a minute later. Unusual start, compensated. Cruyff had made his mischief, despite the strategy of the German command. Vogts would not abandon him anymore and the mythical number 14, far from the area, would dedicate himself to kicking corners, free kicks and even taking lateral kicks, so as not to fall prey to Berti, a relentless mastiff.
This took away the incidence that his enormous category presaged because he would move very far from the area. Technically he was a 7-point player, Cruyff, but his courage, decision, intelligence and tactical ability were fabulous, all 10. Germany made him feel the rigor, Schwarzenbeck hit him with an intimidating tackle from behind. But the Dutchman did not shrink at all.
Germany presented a team with eleven stars, surely the best in its history: Maier; Vogts, Schwarzenbeck, Beckenbauer, and Paul Breitner; Bonhof, Overath, and Uli Hoeness; and above Grabowski, Gerd Müller and Holzenbein. There were no weak points, all of them were excellent, and they acted with great solidarity and determination.
Schwarzenbeck was impassable, a physical rock with a face only a mother can love; he resembled an executioner of the Russian mafia. And Breitner only lacked the ax and the horse, but he razed towns; To that sensational formation, a Netherlands full of football and courage opposed Jongbloed; Suurbier, Arie Haan, Rijsbergen (notable Feyenoord libero) and Ruud Krol; Jansen, Neeskens, and Van Hanegem; Johnny Rep, Cruyff and Rensenbrink (this one, with a poor performance).
Unlike the 1966 final, in which he went unnoticed, Beckenbauer was an imperial figure this time. Now he played as a defender well in the back (in London he was a midfielder), commanding respect and category, wasting class. Possibly one of the most elegant soccer players in history, he walked past his rivals without looking at them, almost ignoring them, as if they didn’t exist. A colossal personality. He could have been a marshal, emperor, chancellor of Germany or president of Mercedes Benz.
He exercised absolute mental control of the stage and his universe: teammates, rivals, referees, the public. He went out playing, he hit him almost always with three fingers and was a specialist in the passing game, a timer with the jump and the header. His commanding ability and composure under all pressure in the box are unmatched by anyone.
Germany never lost despite going 1-0 from the opening minute. Beckenbauer gave a clean start, handed over command to Overath in the middle and he orchestrated with four devils around him: Bonhof, Hoeness, Grabowski and Holzenbein. And above, on the prowl, the fierce Müller.
Germany began to stomp. Holzenbein, a dribbler, got into the Dutch 18 dodging legs and Jansen brought him down. Penal. The barbarian Breitner executed it safely (they say he had never kicked a penalty) and tied: 1 to 1. He shot low to one side and Jongbloed didn’t even move. Nothing to do with the archers of now.
At 42′, Bonhof overflowed Jansen on the right, center back and in a turn so typical of his, Müller nailed the 2-1 with a low and surprising shot. It would be the consecration. Germany imposed its authority on the field and justified the victory. A psychological goal, the Netherlands felt the blow.
That Teutonic dominance appeared until 20′ into the second half, when the Netherlands, with courage and play, began to put him back and create situations to equalize. And she surely deserved it. However, Germany closed well in defense and held with a very efficient Maier and with the traditional German attitude: granitic. Apart from the goals, Germany had 6 clear arrivals at Jongbloed’s goal and the Netherlands 7 at Maier’s. This speaks of the parity of the process.
Very curious: despite being the 9 par excellence, Müller played with the number 13, the 9 was awarded to Grabowski. And among the 22 headlines there was no one with 10. Television was already a color for those countries that had that system.
is Argentinianwe receive in black and white. The novelty of the repetition of plays is introduced, not many, just the goals and a few more. Germany, in economic splendor, had organized the Olympic Games two years earlier right there in Munich and hosted the World Cup with nine new, very modern stadiums. There were, for the first time in the World Cup finals, three yellow cards, established in Mexico ’70. And there should be more.
English john taylor, of good arbitration in general, did not want to disarm the party. He was able to admonish more and even forgave Cruyff’s red card for a tackle against sepp maier already having cardboard for protesting. He made him nervous, Germany played to nullify Cruyff to win the title, they knew they were facing a phenomenon. With his influence abated, it was a game that could be won. So it was.
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FOR THE TIME