On this day: Germany win third World Cup

Germany captain Lothar Matthaus lifts the World Cup trophy on July 08, 1990.
© Getty Images
Twenty-four years ago today, the Germans win the World Cup for the third time in their history at the expense of Argentina in Rome.

Potentially just 180 minutes of football separate Germany and the World Cup trophy at the ongoing tournament in Brazil.

It's little surprise that the three-time champions have reached the semi-final stage because after all, they've featured in at least the last four on every occasion since Japan and South Korea were co-hosts in 2002.

However, what is a source of consternation to German supporters is the fact that their team has not lifted the famous golden prize since 1990 - a feat that was achieved in Rome 24 years ago today.

Their opponents were holders Argentina, who had won the final in Mexico four years earlier 3-2 at the expense of the West Germans. Consequently, revenge was high on the agenda of Franz Beckenbauer's charges.

Italia '90 had largely been dominated by dour defensive and tactical play and with so much at stake in the capital city, Germany and Argentina stuck with that trend over the course of the 90 minutes. As such, goalscoring opportunities were few and far between, which resulted in some of the fans inside the Stadio Olimpico voicing their displeasure at the show that had been laid on for them.

There was some drama in the 65th minute when Argentine substitute Pedro Monzon became the first player to be red-carded in a World Cup final for a foul on Germany striker Jurgen Klinsmann. Down to 10 men, Argentina retreated into their shells even further, with the intention of forcing the contest into a penalty shootout.

It appeared to have worked, but with six minutes left, Germany were awarded a controversial penalty. There appeared to be little contact between Argentina defender Roberto Sensini and Rudi Voller, but Mexican referee Edgardo Codesal pointed to the spot. Inter Milan's Andreas Brehme dispatched the resultant kick from 12 yards out, which sealed the victory for his country.

There still remained enough time, though, for an ill-disciplined Argentina to have another player dismissed when centre-forward Gustavo Dezotti was handed his second booking following a clash with Jurgen Kohler.

When the final whistle was blown, the South Americans had not only become the first team to have had the first and then second player to be sent off in the showpiece event, they were also the first outfit to have failed to score a goal in a World Cup final.

As for the Germans, their head coach Beckenbauer became only the second man in history (after Brazil's Mario Zagallo) to have won the World Cup as both a manager and a player. Der Kaiser had previously captained Germany to the title back in 1974.

West Germany: Illgner; Brehme, Kohler, Augenthaler, Buchwald, Berthold (Reuter); Haessler, Littbarski, Matthaus; Klinsmann, Voller

Argentina: Goycoechea; Ruggeri (Monzon), Simon, Lorenzo; Serrizuela, Sensini, Burruchaga (Calderon), Basualdo, Troglio; Dezotti, Maradona

Germany's Jurgen Klinsmann celebrates scoring at the World Cup on June 17, 1994.
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