The 1982 FIFA World Cup, the 12th FIFA World Cup, was held in Spain from 13 June to 11 July and was marked by a series of great matches and is widely regarded as the second-best ever after the 1970 tournament. This was also the first World Cup to feature 24 teams, an expansion from at most 16 in the previous tournaments.
The Italians were fresh and confident following their semi-final win over Poland, but the West Germans were tired and had not recovered from the bruising epic with France. After a scoreless first half during which Antonio Cabrini fired a penalty wide of goal, the Italians began to dominate the game. After a deliberate foul just outside the area by Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, Italian central defender Claudio Gentile raced upfield to set the ball and initiate the quick restart, catching the German Goalkeeper Schumacher out of position and the German defence unprepared. Paolo Rossi scored first for the third straight game by heading home Gentile's bouncing cross at close range. Once behind, the Germans threw more men forward leaving large gaps at the back for Italy to counter-attack. Exploiting the situation, the Azzurri scored twice more on quick counter-strikes, all the while capitalising on their best-in-the-world defence to hold the Germans. With Claudio Gentile and Gaetano Scirea of Juventus holding the centre, the Italian strikers were free to counter-punch the weakened German defence. Marco Tardelli's splendid shot from the edge of the area (and his legendary shouting and arm-pumping celebration) beat Schumacher first, and Alessandro Altobelli, the substitute for injured striker Francesco Graziani, made it 3-0 at the end of a trademark solo sprint down the right side by the stand-out winger Bruno Conti. Italy's lead appeared secure, encouraging Italian president Sandro Pertini to wag his finger at the cameras in a playful "not going to catch us now" gesture, overcoming an initial reluctance from the Italian crowd to declare victory early after West Germany's famous comeback in the semi-final. In the 83rd minute, however, Paul Breitner managed to put a small scare back into the Italians by driving home a goal against the otherwise spectacular Dino Zoff but it was never enough and Italy claimed their first World Cup title in 48 years, and their third in total with a 3-1 victory
Release Date: 13 July 2009
Certificate: E - Exempt from Certification
Sound: Dolby Digital
Production Year: 1982
Main Language: English