History of the World Cup Soccer Championships 1950 Brazil v. Uruguay Part 2

About the history of the 1950 World Cup Championships for soccer or football ending with Brazil v. Uruguay.

1950

The Uruguay team experienced unexpected difficulty with the hard-fighting Spaniards and had to work very hard to salvage a tie, which gave them one pool point. They were more fortunate in being able to reverse Sweden's halftime lead to a final 3-2 win. The game between Spain and Sweden went well for the latter. Two of the Spanish players bickered on the field, adding to the team's confusion and Sweden's 3-1 victory. Now Uruguay, with 3 pool points, was the runner-up, and the final game--not officially a "final"--was between the confident Brazil and the hopeful Uruguay.

Brazil had good reason to be confident. They had honed to a fine edge the art of alternating short passes with long, angled, passing kicks. The Uruguayans, casual but determined, rose to the challenge with a flexible defense characterized by several spectacular saves. The Brazilians went instantly on the attack. Zizinho, Jair, and Ademir led the brutal advances that penetrated the Uruguayan defense; but repeatedly, Andrade and Valera intercepted and the goalkeeper worked minor miracles defending the goal. Their successful defense inspired the Uruguayans to launch their own offense, but they were thwarted by Brazil's goalkeeper, Barbosa. A couple of minutes into the 2nd half, Brazil scored at last, pulling the Uruguayan defense this way and that until Frianca was able to boot the ball in for the 1st goal of the game. Uruguay responded by stepping up its own attack. On the 3rd try, Perez was successful; it was a shot that Barbosa could only reach with his fingertips. Uruguay scored again 20 minutes later, its all-out effort resulting in a final score of 2-1. Valera, the hero of the match summarized the strategy this way: ". . . We succeeded in erecting a cage from which the Brazilian forwards were rarely able to escape. . . . Our plan was to see that every Brazilian forward must beat at least 2 defenders before being able to shoot." After 20 years, Uruguay was on top again.

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