Best World Cup Finals in History

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The latest edition of the World Cup takes place later this year in Qatar. It will be the 22nd in history. We’ve looked back at some of the best finals of all time and what makes them memorable.

Mystery Over Ronaldo in 1998

The 1998 World Cup final between hosts France and Brazil is probably most remembered for the mystery which surrounded Brazilian striker Ronaldo. When the initial official team sheets were submitted, his name was not included. However, 30 minutes later, he was included instead of Edmundo.

Ronaldo had been Brazil’s best player during the tournament, but it was clear during the final that something was amiss. He looked a shadow of himself as France ran out 3-0 winners at the Stade de France.

Brazil and France could be set to play out another World Cup final this year as the two countries are at the top end of the betting for the competition. They have World Cup 2022 odds of +500 and +550 respectively.

Five-time winners Brazil are proving popular in the World Cup 2022 predictions for who will win the trophy as they are now the number one ranked team in the FIFA world rankings. Just Ronaldo was in 1998, Neymar is their star player today. He is the forward who can play a big part in helping them to a sixth success.

England Overcome West Germany at Wembley

Arguably the most entertaining World Cup final in history came in 1966 at Wembley. The game between England and West Germany finished 2-2 after 90 minutes. The home team then went on to score twice in extra-time to prevail 4-2.

West Germany took the lead in the game after just 12 minutes, but their lead lasted just six minutes. The rollercoaster game looked to be going England’s way inside 90 minutes until Wolfgang Weber equalized to make it 2-2 and force an extra 30 minutes.

Sir Geoff Hurst was England’s hero in the final, scoring a hat-trick, with his third goal sealing the win in the final minute of extra-time. The former West Ham striker was unstoppable in the game.

96,924 fans packed into the old Wembley Stadium for the match. It is England’s only major tournament success so far, although they did reach the final of the European Championship in 2021, losing to Italy on penalties at the new Wembley Stadium.

Brazil’s Stars Shine During 1970 Success

The Brazil team of 1970 is considered by many to be the greatest of all time. The likes of Pele, Carlos Alberto, and Rivellino shone in the final against Italy, coming out on top 4-1 in Mexico City.

Brazil’s final goal in the final was scored by Alberto and it was one of the best in World Cup final history. Seven different Brazilian players touched and passed the ball before their captain beat the Italian goalkeeper Enrico Albertosi.

The victory in 1970 was Pele’s third World Cup success. He had also lifted the trophy in 1958 and 1962 with his country. The Brazilian forward remains the only player to win the tournament on three occasions.

Hopefully, this year’s World Cup final on December 18 in Qatar can live up to the above three matches and prove to be a classic.