The match that rebirthed a nation, was Puskas' biggest regret and led to the creation of an industry worth billions of dollars. I am here to talk to you about the 1954 world cup final between Germany against Hungary or as it is known in Germany (The Miracle of Bern).
It is not easy pointing at a certain match and calling it the greatest match in football history. But I believe as you go through this post you'd see why I would call this match the greatest ever, even though it might not make people's top 50 even.
Hungary was the best team in the world during that time period. If you were to type in (The Golden Team) on Google, the result will be Hungary's team at the time. To get the full extent of how good that team was all you need to look for is the fact that the team played 69 matches together, won 59, drew 10, and lost only one match. That would be the game in this post.
During the group stage, Hungary beat Germany (West Germany at the time) a staggering 8-3 and that's after they won against South Korea 9-0. Also worth noting, they had thrashed England 7-1 just before the world cup. The team had 7 players that were described as the absolute best in the world.
Germany went into the knockout stage as the second of the group until it met Hungary again in the final.
It took 8 minutes for Hungary to go up 2-0 against Germany and then take control of the match in spite of Germany scoring a goal in the 10th minute. Still, Germany equalized in the 18th minute and finally scored the winner in the 84th. However, the story isn't about the comeback.
Weather Condition and its Effect
When Puskas' wife, Erzsébet, was asked about the one regret he had in life she stated is that he wished he could play that final again wearing the Addidas shoes the Germans were wearing.
The reason for that being is that the match was played under heavy rain. Running and playing was a lot harder for the Hungarians, unlike their German counterparts. Many, if not all, analysts from the time credit Germany's comeback not solely to the talent of their players but credit a huge part to the movement they had playing under heavy rain. Many crucial parts of the game would have gone against the Germans if it wasn't for their shoes.
It wasn't like a silly excuse, but the best way to describe the difference is if you played a basketball game in the NBA wearing runners with sticky shoes under them against someone wearing brand new Jordan's.
The Aftermath in Germany
Coming out of world war 2, Germany was destroyed and literally a divided nation. That win served as an inspiration that Germany could become great once more. It reignited ambition in a broken nation. Not just in sport, Germany saw how capable their products are of making a difference as we talked about Addidas.
The world cup win served as a great push. Germany kept their innovation spark glowing and continued to progress. And who knows? Maybe by the end of next year, we will be talking about a nation that equalized the record for most world cup title wins.
The Billion Dollars Industry
That game proved that you need many more things other than just skill to win titles. Addidas' famous boots ushered in an age of sportswear that continues to advance technologically in order to get the slightest hint of an advantage in any sport. After all, if an 8-3 loss can later change into a 2-3 win within 18 days, what else could sportswear bring.
A market that was worth 353.5 BILLIONS in 2020 was sparked by one game that clarified the importance of the right sportswear. Sportswear continues to advance technologically in weight, fabrics, and every little part of it is being studied closely to pursue further improvements.
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Interesting post and yes Adidas made a big difference back then like many other sporting companies do today.
thank you I am glad you see it that way too