Cotton Bowl, Dallas, 27.06.1994
Klinsmann 12., 37., Riedle 20. / Sun-Hong Hwang 52., Myung-Bo Hong 63.
Having picked up four points from their first two matches in Chicago, the Mannschaft would complete their first phase group programme in Dallas. Their final match would be against Asian representatives South Korea, and would be the first meeting between the two sides at senior international level. The two countries had in fact been drawn in the same group in the 1954 tournament in Switzerland, but the curious rules at the time had meant that while both of them would meet Hungary and Turkey, they would never meet each other. Germany of course would go on to win that tournament, while the Koreans would find themselves on the end of two heavy defeats – 9-0 against the Hungarians and 7-0 against the Turks.
Having shown plenty of potential in 1986 and 1990, the Korean team of 1994 seemed to have finally come of age: their opening encounter against Spain had produced an astonishing comeback to draw 2-2, and against Bolivia they had delivered a solid defensive display to earn a goalless draw and with it a share of the spoils. Coming into the match in Dallas’ expansive Cotton Bowl, a shock result would have seen the Taegeuk Warriors through to the knock-out stage for the first time in their history – matching the famous achievement of their Northern neighbours in 1966.
Nationaltrainer Berti Vogts would stick with the same tactics employed against Spain, but with Karl-Heinz Riedle returning to partner Jürgen Klinsmann up front and Andreas Möller being benched. 1990 stalwart Guido Buchwald would also make his first appearance of the tournament, joining the flexible five-man midfield in place of Thomas Strunz.
On what was a baking hot day in Dallas with temperatures in the high thirties, Russian referee Valentin Ivanov led out to two sides in front of another packed crowd of just under sixty-four thousand. The Mannschaft were once again in their Schwarz and Weiß, while the Koreans were kitted out in a natty all-blue kit with an interesting design feature.
Jürgen Klinsmann’s spectacular goal puts German into the lead in a baking hot Cotton Bowl in Dallas
The exhausted Germans would walk off the pitch very much relieved, while the Koreans – on account of results elsewhere – would be eliminated from the tournament. However their performances had been highly encouraging, and clearly boded well for the future. With seven points from their three matches Berti Vogts’ side headed the group table, ahead of Spain on five, the Koreans on two, and the Bolivians propping things up on one. A second phase match against neighbours Belgium back in the slightly more temperate climes of Chicago would await them.
The Mannschaft were safely through with plenty to spare, but things would be far from rosy off the pitch. Stefan Effenberg’s rude gesture to the crowd had not gone down at all well with the Nationaltrainer, who would take immediate action in dropping the controversial ACF Fiorentina midfielder from the squad completely. In his mad moment of pique, Effenberg had quite literally given the finger to his international career.
While some might have argued that Vogts had simply cut off his nose to spite his own face, he would retain a consistent professional ethos. While the likes of Jupp Derwall before him may have been prepared to turn a blind eye to such shenanigans and tolerate players bombarding irate supporters with water bombs, a Stinkefinger directed at supporters – many of whom had spent a lot of money to follow the team – would be just too much for the man known as Der Terrier.
Germany: Illgner – Matthäus (c) (64. Möller) – Kohler, Berthold – Effenberg (75. Helmer), Häßler, Sammer, Buchwald, Brehme – Riedle, Klinsmann
South Korea: Choi In-Young (46. Lee Woon-Jae) – Hong Myung-Bo – Choi Young-Il, Park Jung-Bae, Shin Hong-Gi – Ko Jeong-Woon, Kim Pan-Keun, Lee Young-Jin (40. Chung Jong-Son), Kim Joo-Sung – Hwang Sun-Hong, Cho Jin-Ho (46. Seo Jung-Won)
Referee: Joël Quiniou (France)
Assistants: Valentin Ivanov (Russian Federation), Abdel-Magid Hassan (Egypt)
Fourth Official: Arturo Angeles (United States)
Yellow Cards: Brehme, Klinsmann, Effenberg / Young-Il Choi
Red Cards: – / –
First Phase Group C Table
Other results: Spain 2-2 South Korea; South Korea 0-0 Bolivia; Bolivia 1-3 Spain.