In a sensational World Cup semi-final, Italy tonight (Wednesday) conquered a courageous West German side in a seven goal feast at Mexico City's Aztec Stadium.
In a sensational World Cup semi-final, Italy tonight (Wednesday) conquered a courageous West German side in a seven goal feast at Mexico City's Aztec Stadium. As with their previous game against England, the Germans fought back form the brink of defeat and the match went into extra time before Italy ran out 4-3 victors.
Italy raced to an eighth minute lead through Roberto Boninsegna - and then had to sustain a tremendous battering as West Germany fought for the equaliser.
Despite some fierce Italian tackling, the Germans won complete domination during the second half and the Italian goal had some miraculous escapes. The Germans were still surging forward in injury time. Held beat an Italian defender and crossed a perfect centre for Karl-Heinz Schellinger to hammer into the net.
Five minutes into the half-hour's extra time, the Germans for the first time took the lead. Their ace striker Gerd Muller -- the tip World Cup goal scorer -- panicked the Italian defence into giving away goal. Seeler headed down a centre, Muller ran onto it and the ball seemed to trickle between him and goalkeeper Albertosi.
Italy were back on level terms within four minutes. Burgnich scored the equaliser and before the first period of extra time ended, striker Luigi Riva put the Italians back into a 3-2 lead.
Once more the incredible Germans fought off exhaustion and some robust tackling to draw level. Muller scored with a header to bring his World Cup tally to 10 goals.
Straight from the kick-off, Italy built up a superb counter attack that ended with Rivera putting the ball into the net. It was the final goal in a historic match, with the Italians securing a place in the final against Brazil. Both teams have triumphed in the World Cup twice, and they have a chance to win the trophy outright.