Germany have been involved in four of the five classics that make our list.
The 2018 FIFA World Cup will surely go down in history as one of the best World Cups ever. From upsets to clinical performances, we have seen everything so far. Now, we have our four semi-finalists vie France, Belgium, England and Croatia. The battle between France and Belgium and England and Croatia is surely going to be fiercer and tougher than ever.
Digging deep into World Cup history, Khel Now presents the top five semi-final games played in previous editions of this coveted tournament.
5. Italy 4-3 West Germany (A.E.T) – 1970)
Watch: Italy 4-3 Germany highlights
Regarded as “Game of the Century”, this semi-final of the 1970 World Cup between Italy and West Germany is the game no football fan can forget. Italy took the lead early in the game through Roberto Boninsegna.
The match was all set to end in Italy’s favour, but Karl-Heinz Schnellinger equalized for the Germans and sent the game into extra-time. The next 30 minutes saw five goals. Gerd Muller scored first on 94 minutes with the goal evened out by by Tarcisio Burgnich four minutes later. Both teams scored again in the next few minutes, as the match stood at 3-3 with 10 minutes left to play.
Itlay’s Rivera scored in the 111th minute which turned out to be the winner and sent the Azzurri into the final, where they eventually lost 4-1 to Brazil.
4. Brazil 1-1 Netherlands (4-2 on penalties) – 1998
Watch: Brazil 1-1 Netherlands highlights
Brazil locked horns with a spirited Dutch side in the semi-finals of the 1998 World Cup. Both the teams failed to score in the first half as they went into the break at 0-0. Ronaldo kicked-off the second half with a brilliant goal handing Brazil a vital lead. The Selecao defended very well till the 87th minute, before Patrick Kluivert equalized for the Dutch and sent the game into extra-time.
The next 30 minutes too failed to separate the two sides which took the game into the dreadeed penalties. Ronaldo, Rivaldo, Emerson and Dunga all scored for the Brazilians, while Frank de Boer and Dennis Bergkamp managed to convert for the Netherlands, but their teammates Philip Cocu and Ronald de Boer failed to do so. Brazil won the game 4-2 on penalties.
3. Germany 0-2 Italy (A.E.T) – 2006)
Watch: Germany 0-2 Italy highlights
Both teams missed a lot of chances to open the scoring throughout regulation time, which sent the game into extra-time. The following 30 minutes were quite boring, until the 119th minute, when Fabio Grosso curled a beautiful pass from Andrea Pirlo into the net, handing Italy a 1-0 lead. Grosso’s late strike stunned Signal Iduna Park, jammed with German fans.
A few minutes later, Alessandro Del Piero took advantage of the attacking Germans and scored his side’s second goal, thus sealing a spot in the final for his team.
2. West Germany 3-3 France (5-4 on penalties) – 1982
Watch: West Germany 3-3 France highlights
Les Bleus played West Germany in a thrilling semi-final in the 1982 World Cup. The scoreline remained 1-1 at the end of regular time, thus sending the match into extra-time.
The next 30 minutes saw four goals with Karl-Heinz Rummenigge and Klaus Fischer scoring two for West Germany, while Marius Tresor and Alain Giresse scored for France. Extra-time ended with both teams locked at 3-3. West Germany won 5-4 on penalties, thus booking a place in the final where they lost 3-1 to Italy.
1. Brazil 1-7 Germany – 2014
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It was probably the darkest day in Brazilian football as the Selecao were hammered 1-7 in their own backyard by the mighty German side. Brazil locked horns with Die Mannschaft in the semi-final of the 2014 World Cup. The Selecao entered the game as the favourites to win the tie, but destiny had something else in store. Thomas Muller scored for in the 11th minute starting the storm, which was about to blow Brazil out of the tournament.
Following that were arguably the worst 20 minutes of football Brazil have ever played, as they conceded four more goals. Germany though, were in no mood to stop, as Andre Schurrle added two more goals in the latter part of the game, making the scoreline 0-7. Oscar grabbed a consolation strike in the 90th minute, but Brazil’s World Cup dream had already bit the dust by that time. Germany then went on to become winners after defeating Argentina in the final.