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FIFA World Cup History

Spain 1982 FIFA World Cup

1982 World Cup Betting

Year: 1982

Participants: 24

Countries: Algeria, Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Cameroon, Chile, Czechoslovakia, El Salvador, England, France, Honduras, Hungary, Italy, Kuwait, New Zealand, Northern Ireland, Peru, Poland, Scotland, Spain, USSR, West Germany, Yugoslavia

Championship: Italy 3, West Germany 1

Top goal scorer: Paolo Rossi, Italy (6)

MVP: Paolo Rossi, Italy

The 1982 tournament brought change to the World Cup. FIFA president Joao Havelange, who was elected with strong support by Third World countries in 1974, expanded the field from 16 to 24 teams. The concept for the expansion was to open up the tournament to lesser soccer countries such as Cameroon, which was impressive in the opening round, and Algeria, which stunned West Germany 2-1 in Group 2. . . .

In the 25th minute of the championship game between Italy and West Germany, Italian Antonio Cabrini became the first player to miss a penalty kick in a World Cup final. . . .

Italians Paolo Rossi, Marco Tardelli and Alessandro Altobelli all scored in the second half of the title match to make up for Cabrini's error, leading the Italy to a 3-1 victory at Santiago Bernabeu Stadium.

Paul Breitner, the only player to score in the title game for West Germany, became only the third player to score in two finals. Brazil's Vava and Pele also had accomplished the feat. . . .

Rossi clearly was Italy's hero in 1982, scoring a hat trick in a 3-2 win over Brazil, two goals in a 2-0 win over Poland and the vital first goal in the final. But Rossi nearly missed out on the World Cup altogether. Caught up in a bribery scandal, he was banned for three years in 1980 but continually protested his innocence until he was cleared to play. . . .

The World Cup championship was Italy's third, giving Europe nations a 6-6 tie with South America nations in the tournament. (Brazil had three, Uruguay two, Argentina one; Italy's 3 were added to two from West Germany and one from England.)

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