Thursday, June 17, 2010

17 June 1962 - Brazil Takes Two

On 17 June 1962, World Cup holders Brazil successfully defended their title, beating Czechoslovakia 3-1 in the Final. After going down 0-1, the Brazilians scored three unanswered goals to become only the second country to win consecutive World Cups.

Played before a crowd of 68,679 at the Estadio Nacional in Santiago, Chile, the Final was a rematch of the two squads' previous group stage meeting, which ended as a scoreless draw. That match cost Brazil the services of Pelé, the hero of the previous tournament, due to injury. Although he was unable to play for the remainder of the Cup, Brazil won the group and reached the Final with knockout-round wins over England (3-1) and hosts Chile (4-2). The Czechs, meanwhile, finished second in the group and advanced by defeating Hungary (1-0) and Yugoslavia (3-1).

In the Final, just as they had in the 1958 Final, Brazil went down early, this time conceding a 15th-minute goal to Czech midfielder Josef Masopust. But Pelé's replacement Amarildo, who had scored both goals in Brazil's 2-1 final group stage win against Spain, brought his side level two minutes later. The teams ended the first half even at 1-1.

The champions took the lead in the second half with a 68th-minute header from midfielder Zito, then capitalized on a mistake by the Czech keeper Viliam Schrojf. In the 78th minute, Schrojf, who had played brilliantly throughout the tournament, allowed a high ball to slip through his hands and drop to the feet of Vavá. The forward tapped it into the net, becoming the first player in history to score in two World Cup Finals. It ended the scoring at 3-1 and gave Brazil the second of their five World Cup titles.

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