World Cup are historical events that live long our minds – let’s take a trip down memory lane and remember some of the stand-out matches from the 1986 FIFA World Cup in Mexico:
Mexico 1986 – World Cup Winner – Argentina
Soviet Union v Belgium 15th June-Leon –
Belgium won 4-3 after extra time.
The Soviet Union qualified for the 2nd round as group winners and approached this match full of confidence. Having started the tournament with a 6-0 thrashing of Hungary they faced a Belgium side who had finished 3rd in their group, just sneaking through. Belgium would twice come from behind before seemingly wearing the Soviets out in extra time when they would take a 4-2 lead. The unlucky Belanov would complete his hat-trick to no avail.
Denmark v Spain 18th June-Queretaro –
Spain won 5-1.
Denmark also won their qualifying group at a canter and were flying when they faced Spain and what happened next took everyone by surprise. Despite having Frank Arnesen suspended the Danes would take the lead through a Jesper Olsen penalty but he would go on to gift the Spanish an equaliser. Four goals from Emilio Butragueno left the Danes in disarray after promising so much.
Brazil v France 21st June-Guadalajara –
1-1 after extra time
France won 4-3 on penalties.
In what is viewed by many as an all-time World Cup classic, Careca would give Brazil an early lead only to be pegged back by the great Michel Platini before half time. France had been denied a cast-iron penalty and justice was seemingly done when Joel Bats saved Zico’s penalty and the French would go on to prevail after a penalty shootout.
Argentina v England 22nd June Mexico City –
Argentina won 2-1.
Diego Maradona both thrilled and infuriated in this match which saw both his notorious “Hand of God” goal and his “FIFA Goal of the Century” efforts. Gary Lineker would score a consolation which would earn him the Golden Boot award as the top scorer at the tournament.
Argentina v West Germany 29th June-Mexico City –
Argentina won 3-2.
The West Germans launched a spirited fight back from 2-0 down and Rudi Voller was to equalise with 10 minutes left. However, Maradona was not to finish with a whimper as his pinpoint pass found Jorge Burruchaga who scored what would be the winner and Argentina lifted the World Cup again.
The 1986 FIFA World Cup in Mexico was a credit to the host country, who had stepped in and delivered a memorable World Cup for everyone after Columbia had to withdraw from hosting it. Argentina were the World Cup champions and attention would now turn towards the next hosts and the 1990 FIFA World Cup in Italy.