On this day, 30 July 1930 (Exactly 89 years ago), Hosts Uruguay beat arch-rivals Argentina to first FIFA World Cup .
Played at the Centenario in Montevideo, Uruguay, on 30 July, a Wednesday. Up to date, it is, along with the 1966 FIFA World Cup Final, the only World Cup Final not to be played on a Sunday (the latter being played on a Saturday).
This World Cup Final is also the only one not to be played on a weekend.
The stadium gates were opened at eight o’clock, six hours before kick-off, and at noon the ground was full, officially holding 93,000 people.
A disagreement overshadowed the build-up to the match as the teams disagreed on who should provide the match ball, forcing FIFA to intervene and decree that the Argentine team would provide the ball for the first half and the Uruguayans would provide one for the second.
The game ended 4–2 to Uruguay after they trailed 2–1 at half-time, adding the title of World Cup winners to their status as Olympic champions.
Aged 31, Uruguayan manager Alberto Suppici is the youngest coach to ever win the FIFA World Cup. Jules Rimet, president of FIFA, presented the Uruguayan team with the World Cup Trophy, which was later named after him.
The following day was declared a national holiday in Uruguay; in the Argentinian capital Buenos Aires, a mob threw stones at the Uruguayan consulate.
The last living player from that final, Francisco Varallo (who played as a striker for Argentina), died on 30 August 2010
After 12 minutes, Pablo Dorado put the hosts into the lead, before Argentine winger Carlos Peucelle equalised 8 minutes later, beating goalkeeper Enrique Ballestrero with a powerful shot. In the 37th minute, tournament top scorer Guillermo Stábile gave Argentina a 2–1 lead going into the break.
Uruguay leveled the score 12 minutes into the second half via a goal from Pedro Cea, before Santos Iriarte restored the lead for the hosts in the 68th minute. With a minute left, Héctor Castro put Uruguay up 4–2, sealing the victory for Uruguay in the inaugural World Cup.
On this day, 30 July 1966 (Exactly 53 years ago today), England defeated Germany 4-2 in the final of the 1966 FIFA World Cup at London’s Wembley Stadium.
Alf Ramsey’s prediction that “England will win the World Cup” at home was bold. After all, the home of football had done very little since returning to the FIFA fold in 1950.
But Ramsey was prescient as England became the first host to win the World Cup since Italy in 1934, largely thanks to a hat trick from Geoff Hurst.
After a limp start to the 1966 tournament, Ramsey’s team evolved, one that was organized and resilient – dubbed “The Wingless Wonders.”
It would be unfair to say England was lacking in flair.
In Bobby Charlton, England had one of the game’s great strikers of a ball, and there have been few defenders in the history of the game more composed than the captain, Bobby Moore.
And although Ramsey lost striker Jimmy Greaves because of injury, he was able to promote Hurst to the starting lineup.
Ramsey would stick with Hurst, the scorer of the only goal in the quarterfinal victory over Argentina, for the final against West Germany even though Greaves was healthy again.
It’s a decision that has allowed Hurst’s name to become synonymous with World Cup final history.
More than 50 years later, Hurst is still the only player to score a hat trick in a final. His first, a header in the 18th minute, got England back to 1-1.
The match was even until Martin Peters put England ahead in the 78th, a lead it held until the last minute of normal time when Wolfgang Weber scrambled home an equalizer.
It may have been agony for England but Ramsey had one last moment of inspiration before extra time started: “You’ve won it once – now go and do it again,” he said. “Look at them, they’re finished.”
Cue Hurst and one of the most controversial moments in World Cup final history.
Late in the first period of extra time, the tireless Alan Ball crossed to Hurst, who turned and shot. The ball thumped down from the underside of the West German crossbar.
The nearby Roger Hunt raised his arms to proclaim the ball bounced over the West Germany goal-line. Weber thought he headed the ball over for a corner. Swiss referee Gotffried Dienst went over to Soviet linesman Tofik Bakhramov who believed there was a goal.
Hurst added his third in the dying seconds with a thumping left-footed drive to make it 4-2.
The country that had done more than any other to make football the world’s top team sport finally won the World Cup.
It’s still waiting for its second.
Geoff Hurst’s second goal and the decision of referee Gottfried Dienst have continued to be controversial.
But photographic technology has so far been unable to offer decisive evidence about whether or not the ball crossed the goal-line and Hurst remains the only player to score a hat-trick in the World Cup finals.
On this day 30 July 2006 (Exactly 13 years ago today) Didier Ya Konan scored twice to help Ivorian side Asec Mimosas crush Hearts of Oak 3-0 in their African Champions League encounter in Abidjan.
Ya Konan opened the score line three minutes from the interval and doubled the lead after the break from the penalty spot.
Emmanuel Kone thundered a furious free-kick midway through the second period to seal the comfortable victory.
STORIES: GEORGE MAHAMAH