History of the World Cup Soccer Championships 1954 Germany v. Hungary Part 2

About the history of the 1954 World Cup Championships for soccer or football ending with West Germany v. Hungary.

1954

The final set West Germany against Hungary. The Hungarian core consisted of Puskas, Kocsis, Hidegkuti, and Bozsik. Greatest of these greats was Ferenc Puskas, the team captain and an army major. As was true in several of the communist countries, the Hungarian Army inducted the best players, made them soldiers, and had them play for the army team. It was a technique guaranteed to produce good player selection, discipline, and teamwork, if not always good morale.

Puskas had been injured in a foul by a German in an earlier match. Although his ankle had not quite healed, he decided to play. Once again it rained as the Hungarians mounted a strong attack 6 minutes into the game, culminating in the 1st point, flowing from Puskas's formidable left foot. It was shortly followed up by another from Czibor. Such a start would be enough to demoralize most opponents, but the Germans came back strongly and within a few minutes Morlock had put them on the board, and Helmut Rahn equalized the score.

The 2nd half began with an insidious Hungarian assault, headed by Puskas. But both of his credible shots were deflected by German goalkeeper Turek, and a header by Kocsis bounced off the bar.

The German drive came next, culminating in a goal by Rahn who advanced, stopped, and kicked the ball past a desperate Grosics. The score was Germany 3, Hungary 2. It had become clear that Puskas, for all his valiant efforts, was not in top form: his injured ankle made him a slower, more plodding player when speed and flexibility were at a premium. He nearly evened the score with a goal, but while his team rejoiced, the referee had other thoughts--Puskas had been offsides. The final effort by Hungary's Czibor was also to no avail, his clear, powerful kick deflected by the acrobatic Turek. For the 1st time, the Germans had made their mark at the World Cup.

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