1982 World Cup had many interesting aspects. In Italy, World cup had the luckiest winner (of 1982 World Cup) who without winning a match at group stage and scoring only two goals qualified for next round. But, the beautiful historical win of Italy was overshadowed by one group game. The Group Match between group leader Austria and third placed Germany saw both joined hands to knock out second placed Algeria, the debutant. Algeria was eliminated, not because others played better on ground, but because others joined hands outside the ground. Anschluss!! Non-aggression pact of Gijón!! Disgrace of Gijón!!
Excited Austrian and German Fans
In 1978 World Cup, Austria had defeated West Germany 3-2 and as a result the Germans could not qualify for the third place match. The rare win against Germans brought joy all over Austria. So, in 1982 at Group Stage while the Austrians wanted win to stretch, German fans were looking for revenge.
Situation Before the Match
Germany and Austria were supposed to play the last match of their group. Algeria had already played both of them, and also Chile, who was defeated duly by the other three teams.
Algeria and Austria were tied on 4 points each, but Algeria had 0 goal difference, scoring 5 and conceding 5.
Austria had scored 3 but not conceded any goals.
Germans on the other hand had scored 5 and conceded 4 but were hanging at third place with only 2 points earned through the win against Chile.
Scenario Required for Both the Teams
- A draw or loss would have knocked out Germany.
A win with bigger goal difference than 2 would have knocked out Austria.
A German win with just a goal or two would keep Austria on the top of the group, make German sneak through, and knock out the debutant Algerians.
The Match That Lasted Just 10 Minutes
Germany vs Austria match started with the eyes of world on them, including Algeria and Africa. But the players of both teams fought for the ball only for 10 minutes. Horst Hrubesch scored the goal for Germany. After that followed the most horrific tale of a World Cup Match. Players from both teams started kicking the ball aimlessly, passing the ball between themselves without knowing what to do next as none had intention of reaching the opponent’s goal. The Trauma continued for next 80 minutes of the match.
This was going to be one of the rare opportunity when a debutant would qualify to next round in the World Cup. Alas!! the soccer fans, the hosts Spaniards, the commentators, the viewers across the globe, and on top of that even the German and Austrian fans were shocked. While the Algerians call it Anschluss, Germans call it Non-aggression pact of Gijón and Austrians call it Disgrace of Gijón, the fans were left distraught. One of the German fans even burnt the national flag.
Since then Algeria has a revenge to take against the German and the Austrians. Since then FIFA introduced a system where the last matches of every group will be played simultaneously.
If Algeria had won or drawn against Austria, they could have avoided the elimination on their own. But, the way two teams planned to knock Algeria out was one of the most shameful incidents of any FIFA World Cup.