Wednesday, June 10, 2015

10 June 1934 - Italy Bounces The Czechs

On 10 June 1934, hosts Italy won the first of their four World Cup trophies, beating Czechoslovakia 2-1 in extra time before a crowd of 45,000 at Rome's Stadio Nazionale PNF.

Unlike the first World Cup, the 1934 second edition did not include a group stage. Instead, the 16 qualified teams started directly with knockout rounds. Italy opened the tournament with an easy win over the United States (7-1), then overcame Spain (in a replay, 1-0), and Austria (1-0) to reach the Final. Czechoslovakia, meanwhile, advanced with victories over Romania (2-1), Switzerland (3-2), and Germany (3-1). Czech striker Oldřich Nejedlý scored in every match - and recorded a hat-trick against Germany - to enter the Final as the Cup's top scorer with goals.

In the Final, the Italians kept Nejedlý in check to keep the match scoreless at halftime, but the Czechs went ahead in the 76th minute with a goal from forward Antonín Puč. Their lead lasted only five minutes, as Italy's Raimundo Orsi equalized in the 81st minute. The two sides remained even at 1-1, taking the match into extra time. There, striker Angelo Schiavio scored his fourth goal of the tournament, a 95th-minute shot that proved to be the Cup winner.

Italy repeated as champions in 1938 and won again in 1982 and 2006.

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