v Mexico, 1986 World Cup Quarter-Final
Estadio Universitario, Monterrey, 21.06.1986
4-1 PSO (0-0, 0-0, 0-0 aet)
– / –
Penalties: Allofs 1-0; Negrete 1-1; Brehme 2-1; Quirarte SAVED; Matthäus 3-1; Servin SAVED; Littbarski 4-1.
Franz Beckenbauer’s side were to stay in Monterrey for their quarter-final, against a bouyant host nation that had been building both confidence and a decent head of steam. While the Germans had started to look a lot better, it was clear that their usual physical game was being tested by both the heat and the altitude. The game against the hosts was to be the Mannschaft’s biggest challenge yet, as both the altitude and temperature were to be joined by a third external factor, the fanatical home supporters.
Given the quality of the opposition, coach Beckenbauer again reshuffled the formation and personnel; the attacking 1-3-3-3 was replaced by a slightly more conservative 1-3-4-2. Norbert Eder was moved back into the defensive line in place of Thomas Berthold, who joined the new midfield quartet alongside Matthäus, Magath and the recalled Andy Brehme, while skipper Kalle Rummenigge retained his place alongside Klaus Allofs at the expense of Rudi Völler who had looked out of sorts against Morocco.
Unfortunately this was yet another late kick-off, which meant another tuning into Deutsche Welle for Kommentar in deutsch.
The match had few genuine chances, and was probably best defined by – and remembered for – some awful antics by the players on both sides as well as a clearly incompetent Colombian referee who made his name by dishing out more cards than I would usually send at Christmas.
Germany ended up having to play almost half of the two hours spent on the pitch with ten men, when Thomas Berthold was issued a red card following some truly awful face-holding shenanigans from Fernando Quirarte. As soon as Mr. Jesús Díaz came charging to the scene – in the inimitable style of the typically thespian South American referee – you knew the outcome. Clearly nonplussed, Berthold shrugged his shoulders and trudged off the pitch while the prostrate Quirarte was still holding his face as if he had been shot with an elephant gun.
With nine minutes to go in extra time, Lothar Matthäus rather unfortunately showed that whatever Quirarte could do, he could do too – he was clearly body-checked off the ball by Javier Aguirre, but the spectacular sideways leap and unnecessary triple roll was something best left on the gym mat. In fact, the on the floor movement was akin to someone being rolled up in an invisible gym mat.
As the final whistle blew, both teams were now down to ten men to take part in what was the second penalty shoot-out of the day, with France having dispatched favourites Brazil a few hours earlier. After Allofs, Negrete and Brehme had converted their penalties, the shootout turned into the Toni Schumacher show as the 1. FC Köln stopper knocked away Quirarte’s effort with his legs and then easily clutched onto a powder-puff shot from Raúl Servín. Matthäus had made it 3-1 in the shootout before Pierre Littbarski stepped up to power the winning penalty to Mexico ‘keeper Pablo Larios’ right.
I will always remember the German radio commentator screaming “TONI SCHUMACHERRRRR!!!” as made his two saves – the hosts were once again out at the quarter-final stage, and Germany were now into the last four to face France, the conquerors of the mighty Brazil.
Germany FR: Schumacher – Jakobs – Eder (115. Littbarski), Förster, Briegel – Berthold, Matthäus, Magath, Brehme – Rummenigge (c) (59. Hoeneß), Allofs
Mexico: Larios – Felix Cruz – Servín, Quirarte, Amador (70. Francisco Cruz) – España, Muñoz, Boy (32. de los Cobos), Aguirre, Negrete – Sánchez
Referee: Jesús Díaz (Colombia)
Assistants: Christopher Bambridge (Australia), Alan Snoddy (Northern Ireland)
Yellow Cards: Allofs, Förster, Matthäus / Aguirre, Quirarte, de los Cobos, Servin, Sanchez
Red Cards: Berthold 64. / Aguirre 100.