The 2018 World Cup is just around the corner, so talkSPORT.com are trawling through the archives to relive past tournaments.
Today we are taking a look at the 1982 edition; held in Spain and won by Italy, it is widely regarded as one of the last truly great tournaments.
You had a brilliant Brazil team headlined by Zico, Socrates and Falcao, and you had the eventual champions dumping them out the finals against all the odds. Hungary equalled the largest ever margin of victory in a World Cup match when they beat El Salvador 10-1, and France and West Germany played out a semi-final regarded by Michel Platini as the ‘most beautiful game’ he ever played in.
Platini was one of the stars of the tournament, but who else caught the eye in Spain? The World Cup All-Star Team is named to remember the best performers, and you can see who was selected below…
1982 FIFA WORLD CUP
Runners-up: West Germany
Third place: Poland
Fourth place: France
Top scorer: Paolo Rossi (Italy) – 6 goals
Best Player: Paolo Rossi (Italy)
Best Young Player: Manuel Amoros (France)
1982 WORLD CUP ALL-STAR TEAM
GOALKEEPER: Dino Zoff (Italy)
Widely regarded as one of the greatest goalkeepers ever, Zoff ranks alongside the likes of Lev Yashin, Gordon Banks and Sepp Maier at the pinnacle of the position. He is the oldest ever winner of the World Cup, having passed his 40th birthday four months before he captained Italy to success in 1982. Zoff’s entire club career was spent in Italy, primarly with Juventus where he won six league titles, two domestic cups, and the UEFA Cup in 1977. Fourteen years before keeping goal for Italy as they won the 1982 World Cup, Zoff was the Azzurri’s No1 for their successful Euro 1968 campaign.
DEFENCE: Luisinho (Brazil)
A Brazil international between just 1980 and 1983, Luisinho’s finest moment came at the 1982 World Cup when he was voted into the All-Star Team. He played in every match at the tournament, showcasing his skills as more of a winger than a full-back. His marauding runs down the flank helped create space that Zico and Socrates exploited in the final third.
DEFENCE: Claudio Gentile (Italy)
Gentile represented Italy at two World Cup finals, winning in 1982 after finishing fourth four years earlier. The Juventus icon was an almost permanent member of the starting lineup in Spain, only missing the semi-final due to suspension. He famously marked Diego Maradona out the game with a foul-happy performance when Italy defeated Argentina, saying after the match: ‘Football is not for ballerinas!’
DEFENCE: Fulvio Collovati (Italy)
One of the great defenders of the 1970s and 1980s, Collovati played for both Milan and their city rivals Internazionale, and represented his country on 50 occasions. His partnership with Gentile at the heart of Italy’s defence in 1982 was truly superb, with Gaetano Scirea playing behind the pair as a sweeper. This Italian defensive unit will go down in history as the side that knocked the great Brazil of ’82 out the World Cup.
DEFENCE: Junior (Brazil)
With Luisinho on the right flank and Junior on the left, Brazil had a brilliant pair of attacking full-backs. Junior, who made his name with Flamengo and won 70 caps for his country, was also able to play in midfield and it showed with him just as comfortable in the attacking third as the defensive. He was naturally right footed and his performances caught the eye and earned him interest from Europe. Two years after the World Cup he left Brazil for Torino of Italy.
MIDFIELD: Zbigniew Boniek (Poland)
Perhaps the greatest Polish player of all time, Boniek was slected by Pele as one of the 100 best living footballers in 2004. He spent the majority of his career in his homeland, finally earning a move abroad in 1982 when Juventus signed him; he went on to win Serie A, the Coppa Italia, the European Cup Winners’ Cup and the European Cup while in Turin. Able to play in midfield and as a forward, the versatile Pole was equally comfortable creating goals as he was scoring them, and he had a brilliant physique being tall and powerful but also possessing great pace both with and without the ball.
MIDFIELD: Falcao (Brazil)
Falcao, a legend for Roma, was a truly gifted midfielder, capable of creating play from deep as well as shielding the defence behind him. He had great vision, passing and shooting ability, and was known for his intelligence while both in and out of possession. He spent five years with Roma which coincided with them reaching their only ever European Cup final, while he also is a legend with Internazional of Porto Alegre, the club with whom he started his career. In 34 games with Brazil, Falcao scored six goals, although he failed to net in the 1982 World Cup.
MIDFIELD: Michel Platini (France)
France’s greatest ever player, Platini is held in higher regard than Zinedine Zidane despite his failings as the president of UEFA in recent years. He was quite simply a phenomenon, and is believed by many to not just be France’s greatest ever player, but one of the best to ever play the game. Platini was a brilliant playmaker who excelled in front of goal, with penalties and free-kicks his speciality. The Juventus legend netted once at the 1978 World Cup, and finished both the 1982 and 1986 tournaments with two goals apiece. His greatest performance came at Euro 84, when Platini captained France to the trophy by scoring nine of France’s 14 goals in just five games; the second highest scorer had just three goals.
MIDFIELD: Zico (Brazil)
Often called the ‘White Pele’, Zico was held in high regard by the real Pele: ‘throughout the years, the one player that came closest to me was Zico’, the Brazil legend said. He was a set-piece specialist and one of the greatest attacking midfielders ever to grace the beautiful game. And Zico made sure the game was beautiful, with his brilliant techincal skills and vision making him a joy to watch. Despite playing as a midfielder, Zico has a goalscoring record most strikers would be proud of; he netted 48 times in 71 appearances for Brazil, and ended his domestic career with 698 games played and 476 goals scored.
FORWARD: Paolo Rossi (Italy)
A Ballon d’Or winner in 1982 for his six goals that helped Italy to victory at that year’s World Cup, Rossi also played for Italy at the World Cups of 1978 and 1986, scoring a total 20 goals in 48 senior international appearances for the Azzurri. He established himself as one of the world’s best forwards in 1978 with three goals making him Italy’s top scorer at the World Cup, but Rossi’s most famous moment on a football pitch came four years later, when he netted a hat-trick against the Brazil of Socrates, Zico and Falcao to knock them out the finals as Italy went on to claim the famous trophy.
FORWARD: Karl-Heinz Rummenigge (West Germany)
A two-time Ballon d’Or winner, Rummenigge finished the 1982 World Cup as runner-up in the scoring charts with five goals, behind Paolo Rossi on six. He netted 45 goals in total for West Germany, playing in the World Cups of 1978 and 1986, as well as ’82, and he was part of the German side which won Euro 1980 by defeating Belgium in the final. On the domestic stage he primarily played for Bayern Munich – winning a host of silverware – but Rummenigge also represented Internazionale of Milan and Swiss club Servette.
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