Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 12th 2014 Contents PORTO SEGURO---Diego Maradona was
reportedly so struck by stage fright that
he called for his mother s help as Argentina
players sat in silence in their changing
room before the 1986 World Cup final
against West Germany.
But it was Maradona who provided the
moment of brilliance that decided the game
and gave Argentina its second title before
114,800 fans at the Azteca stadium in Mexico
City. Four years later, Maradona was in tears
as the Germans lifted the title in Rome s
Argentina and Germany have a long and
emotional World Cup rivalry involving some
of the best players to grace the game. When
they face each other again on Sunday in Rio
De Janeiro s Maracana Stadium, it will be
the third World Cup final between the
teams---something no other two nations
The 1986 and 1990 finals are still two of
the most talked about games in football his-
In 1986, Maradona was at the summit of
his career and scored all four of Argentina s
goals in the quarterfinals and semifinals---
including the "hand of God" against England.
Franz Beckenbauer was in charge of Germany
in his first major tournament as coach.
Germany s camp was in disarray, and
goalkeeper Uli Stein was sent home for
insulting Beckenbauer. Journalists shared a
hotel with the players and their nightly
escapades became tabloid lore.
But the Germans plodded on and beat
France 2-0 in the semifinals, even though
the Michel Platini-led French team had been
widely expected to face Argentina in the
And so, in the noon-time heat of the
awe-inspiring Azteca, Karl-Heinz Rum-
menigge and Maradona led their sides out.
The Germany captain was playing injured
throughout the tournament and had not
Jose Luis Brown s header and Jorge Val-
dano s goal on a counterattack gave Argentina
a 2-0 lead and Maradona s team appeared
to be cruising. Then the Germans struck
Rummenigge and substitute Rudi Voeller
scored from Andreas Brehme s free kicks
and suddenly it was 2-2 with eight minutes
Maradona had been marked by Lothar
Matthaeus, who did a good job throughout
the match. But with the Germans trying to
use the momentum and grab the winner,
the ball took a weird bounce in midfield and
Maradona sent Jorge Burruchaga racing with
a deft left-foot flick. Burruchaga beat the
offside trap and Argentina had the title.
Years later, Valdano told Germany s Spiegel
magazine that Maradona was so nervous
before the final that he called for his mother,
" Tota, come and help me, I am afraid,
you must help me, " Valdano described the
scene as Maradona broke the pre-match
silence in the dressing room.
Four years after that game, Beckenbauer
became the first man to win the World Cup
as both player and coach.
Germany dominated the final, outshooting
Argentina 23-1 but the South Americans
held on despite having two men sent off,
Pedro Monzon and Gustavo Dezotti, a first
for a World Cup final.
The match was decided by a disputed
penalty in the 85th minute that was con-
verted by Brehme with a low shot inside
the post. Matthaeus had been the designated
penalty taker, but he did not trust his shoes
and left it for Brehme.
Matthaeus began the match with a pair
of shoes he got as a gift from Maradona.
But the right shoe came apart during the
first half and Matthaeus had to get a new
pair during the break. He did not feel com-
fortable enough to take the penalty.
A furious Maradona broke into tears as
he blamed the referee for the loss. Becken-
bauer walked alone on the grass of the
Olympic stadium in a reflective mood as his
players celebrated. In 2010, Maradona was
in charge of the Argentina team when it lost
4-0 to Germany in the quarterfinals, ending
his second career as national team coach.
After the 1990 match, Beckenbauer pre-
dicted that a reunited Germany would be
virtually unbeatable. (AP)
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Saturday, July 12, 2014
RIO DE JANEIRO---Nicola Rizzoli of Italy
will referee the World Cup final between
Germany and Argentina.
With a European and South American
team playing, many had expected Fifa to
appoint an Asian referee for tomorrow s
game. But Rizzoli got the call to work his
third Argentina match at this year s World
"It is unbelievable for me," Rizzoli said
in a video interview released Friday by Fifa.
"I represent Italy in this moment. I want
to be one of the best for sure, and I will."
He is the second Italian to referee the
final in the past four World Cups. Pierluigi
Collina refereed when Germany lost to Brazil
2-0 in the 2002 final in Yokohama, Japan.
Now head of UEFA refereeing, Collina
has been a strong supporter of his com-
patriot s career.
Rizzoli was the referee for the all-German
Champions League final in 2013, when Bay-
ern Munich beat Borussia Dortmund 2-1
Fifa refereeing committee chairman Jim
Boyce said earlier Friday that Rizzoli would
get the duty.
"We choose the best referees for the best
matches, and the Italian will referee the
final," Boyce said.
Rizzoli has already worked three matches
at this year s World Cup, including Argenti-
na s quarterfinal victory over Belgium and
a group win over Nigeria. He also handled
the high-profile match between the Nether-
lands and Spain on the second day of the
Fifa head of refereeing Massimo Busacca
also said that match officials have improved
the football at this year s World Cup.
Busacca said their understanding of the
game helped increase the number of goals
scored and playing time per match from
four years ago in South Africa.
Meanwhile, referees have awarded fewer
fouls and yellow cards in Brazil than in
"Football won in this competition," said
Busacca, a former World Cup referee.
Fifa also said the 95 injuries at this World
Cup, seven classed as severe, were a reduc-
tion of 40 per cent.
"When we compare all the matches we
can be really satisfied," Busacca said. (AP)
Italian official Rizzoli to ref final
NEW YORK---As the World Cup neared its end
this week, Twitter had a field day with Brazil's humil-
iating 7-1 loss to Germany in the semifinals, which
became the most-discussed sports game in the so-
cial network's history.
While Germany barreled down on a stunned
Brazilian team to score five goals in the match's first
half, quips such as #ThingMoreLikelyThanBrazilWin-
ningTheWorldCup and #TeamsBetterThanBrazil be-
came top trending topics on Twitter. Teams better
than Brazil, naturally, produced lots of photos of chil-
dren's soccer teams, and at least one of a team of
Here's a look at how the World Cup fared online
--- 'RED WEDDING'
With Neymar nursing a back injury, Brazil was al-
ready down its star player on Tuesday. But as click-
fishing Web sites like to say, you wouldn't believe
what happened next. Germany delivered goal after
goal (including four in a seven-minute span) that
had Brazilian fans sobbing, yelling insults at their
team and sitting in stunned silence. It may have
been around the fourth or fifth goal --- hard to tell, it
was all happening so fast---that tweets such as "This
is the World Cup's Red Wedding" began popping up,
a reference to the infamous "Game of Thrones"
episode in which several key characters are slaugh-
The hashtag #PrayForBrazil also became popular,
but God demurred. A parody account called
@TheTweetOfGod, which has some 1.4 million fol-
lowers, replied with "Stop praying to Me, Brazil. Even
I can't help you now." Another widely circulated
image was an altered photo of the famous Brazilian
Christ the Redeemer statue, holding his face in his
palm in exasperation.
--- CURSE OF THE AGING ROCKER
Mick Jagger is accused of jinxing the World Cup
teams he supports, including Brazil. The tradition to
blame the Rolling Stones singer began four years
ago, at the World Cup in South Africa. In that tourna-
ment, Brazil lost to the Netherlands in the quarterfi-
nals. Jagger, who has a son with former Brazilian
model Luciana Gimenez, showed up at the match
wearing a Brazilian team jersey.
On Google, Brazilian searches for "Mick Jagger" in-
creased 16-fold in the 24 hours around the match.
Jagger again was in the audience --- as he had been
with six other matches where his team lost.
--- FACEBOOK, TWITTER SCORE
On Facebook, 66 million people had more than
200 million posts, comments and likes during the
Brazil-Germany match. Sixteen million of those peo-
ple were in Brazil, the company said. On Twitter,
meanwhile, the match became the single most-dis-
cussed sports game ever, with 35.6 million tweets
sent during it. The previous record was 24.9 million
posts for Super Bowl XLVIII in February. (AP)
Brazil supporters hold a poster depicting Rolling
Stones singer Mick Jagger wearing a Germany
shirt prior to the World Cup semifinal soccer
match between Brazil and Germany at the
Mineirao Stadium in Belo Horizonte, Brazil.
WORLD CUP ONLINE
In this June 29, 1986, file photo, Diego Maradona, holds up the trophy, after Argentina
beat West Germany 3-2 in their World Cup soccer final match, at the Atzeca Stadium, in
Mexico City. Tomorrow, Germany and Argentina will face each other again in the final of
the 2014 soccer World Cup. AP PHOTO
Argentina, Germany history
When frightened Maradona
showed his brilliance
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