Saturday Apr 18, 2020. 13:00
With football suspended all around the globe, we turn to the past for inspiration and entertainment. This week African Football looks back at one of the biggest upsets in World Cup history: Algeria’s defeat of West Germany in the 1982 finals in Spain.
Algeria were World Cup debutants in ‘82 and given little hope for their opening Group 2 clash against West Germany (two-time champions and one of the outright favourites) in Gijon on 16 June.
However, the North Africans held ‘Der Mannschaft’ goalless through the first and took the lead early in the second, with Rabah Madjer netting in the 54th minute.
Germany hit back through the great Karl-Heinz Rummenigge on 67 minutes, but parity was fleeting: the Fennec Foxes reclaimed the ascendancy almost immediately through Lakhdar Belloumi and went on to claim a shock 2-1 victory.
Algeria lost their next match to Austria but followed it up with a 3-2 win over Chile, which in normal circumstances would have been enough to see them progress.
However, the final group matches were not played at the same time and Germany v Austria only took place the following day.
In what has become known as the ‘Disgrace of Gijon’, Germany claimed a sterile 1-0 win in what was effectively a fix: the result allowed both teams to advance at Algeria’s expense.
Ever since then, the final matches in a group are played simultaneously to avoid this exact scenario, but that’s of little consolation to Algeria’s heroes of 1982, who deserved so much more for their efforts in Spain.
Enjoy the highlights of the match, courtesy of FIFA’s official YouTube channel: