On July 30th 1930 Uruguay won the first ever World Cup. In the final held at Estadio Centenario in Montevideo they beat Argentina 4:2. Of that we can be certain. But how much of what we read and hear about the World Cup 1930 should we take at face value?
Dean Lockyer has spent several years battling this very question. On his blog he digs through newspaper archives, memoirs, photographs, and every other bit of information covering the World Cup 1930. Fortunately for us he came onto the show to help us decode the story of the tournament.
Topics include, but are not limited to: King Carol II of Romania and his involvement in selecting the squad; foreign born players featuring for the USA; Argentina’s Luis Monti receiving death threats; crowd trouble in Montevideo and Buenos Aires. Of course we talk extensively about the football on display as well. We also weave in and out of the broader issue of seperating fact from fiction.
In recent years the Polish national side has been trending up. Robert Lewandowski has established himself as one of the premier forwards in the game. A number of talents are starting to make a name for themselves. At the World Cup 2018, with a bit of luck, Poland could progress into the knock-out stages.
There used to be a time when the Biało-Czerwoni belonged to the elite of world football. A unique generation of players saw them finish third at the World Cup 1974: Tomaszewski, Zmuda, Musial, Gadocha, Szarmach, Deyna, Lato, to name but a few.
For our latest episode we dive into those glory years of Polish football. With expert Christopher Lash we first take a look at the structure of Polish football during the ’50s & beyond, talk about how the heroes of the ’70s were groomed, and try to figure out where it all went wrong in the ’90s. You can find Christopher’s comparison piece we talk about during the show on his website.
In the second part we talk about the match of the episode as voted by you: Poland vs Holland in the qualification for the European Championship 1976.
Having finished runners-up more times than anybody in Leverkusen cared to remember, Bayer 04 had claimed the undesirable moniker of “Neverkusen”. Playing at times the best football in the country the side ultimately always fell short in collecting silverware. In 2001/02 they lost the Bundesliga title race on the last matchday. A week later they fell to Schalke in the Cup final. Another four days later another defeat in the Champions League final would forever cement their place in footballing lore as nearly men.
Their opponents at Hampden Park faced their own bit of pressure. Having delivered two CL trophies to Madrid within three years club president Lorenzo Sanz was nonetheless voted out of power. New guy Florentino Perez wasted no time by ushering in the Galácticos era at Real, bringing in Luis Figo from Barcelona and, in 2001, Zinedine Zidane from Juventus. For all the money spent they travelled to Glasgow empty handed having finished third in La Liga and losing to Deportivo La Coruna in the Copa final.
Amadei, Falcao, Totti: a lineage of great footballers and, as far as Romanisti are concerned, kings; for each of them had been instrumental in Roma claiming their Scudetti. Amedeo Amadei was the side’s top goalscorer during the 1941/42 campaign. Paulo Roberto Falcão pulled the strings in midfield as the Giallorossi for the first half decade of the 1980s, in ’82/83 Roma came out on top.
In 2000/01 AS Roma won their third, and to date last, Scudetto. Led by 24-year-old playmaker Francesco Totti the Giallorossi beat out an incredibly stacked field to claim the league. The other team from Rome had broken Juve’s stranglehold the year before. They, as well as Parma, relied on seemingly inexhaustable war chests, luring many of the world’s best players to Serie A. Juve, of course, wanted their crown back and still boasted an amazing side including Zidane, Davids, del Piero…
So, just how did Roma do it? Well that’s what we’re trying to figure out with this episode, talking tranfers, tactics, and performances. To help us, Marco Ciarla jumps in mid-way through the show. Marco is an avid Romanisti and part of the CurvAmerica podcast who talk Serie A on a weekly basis. As a bonus we get to pick his brains about where Roma (and Serie A) are headed in 2017. In between we, of course, talk about a lone match in way too much detail: Roma’s final league match against Parma.
Minutes if you want to jump around:
0:01:45 Southern challengers for the Scudetto appear (Parma & Lazio)
0:13:00 The 101 on AS Roma club history
0:24:14 Franco Sensi buys Roma for 20 billion Lire in 1993
0:34:45 Totti at loggerheads with Bianchi, center-piece in Cappello’s system
0:43:00 Marco on the landscape of Serie A in ’00/01,
0:53:15 And on Roma’s team set-up in ’00/01
1:07:00 Quick run-down of Roma’s season
1:17:15 Capturing the Scudetto on June 17th against Parma
1:58:30 Marco on Totti’s place in Roma’s club history,
2:05:15 On Roma in 2017, Juve’s push for the triple
2:13:45 And on what might happen in Serie A ’17/18
In a YYFP-first we bring a new voice into the fold. Lukas Tank (@SergiXaviniesta) was kind enough to join Sebastian for an hour long interview. Lukas has worked his way through football history, publishing his thoughts on the legends of the game along with his “Teams of the Decade” on his blog footballarguments.wordpress.com.
The over-arching theme for the talk turned out to be how yesteryear affects the modern game and what we can gleam from diving into old matches to help us understand football today.
We ran the gamut of topics, such as Cruyff’s ever-lasting importance, Matthäus’ longevity & standing in Germany, or who could be considered the greatest Italian player of all time?
Minutes in case you want to jump around:
0:03:00 What does Lukas’ process look like?
0:09:00 Does the big stage make the big player?
0:13:45 Could Benteke hack it in the ’60s?
0:17:15 Where does Lukas’ fascination with football history come from?
0:28:30 Who is the greatest Italian player ever?
0:33:00 Does Matthäus’ longevity aid or hinder his all-time status?
0:42:30 What might be learned about modern football by watching historic matches?
0:47:00 Looking for exellence in football/sports history
0:51:00 How did Lukas build his “Team Of The Decade ’75-85”; what are his criteria for inclusion?
0:57:00 Which “Team Of The Decade” is the easiest to break into?
1:00:30 Are we living in a silver or even golden age of football right now?
For most of the ’90s Milan and Juventus had a stranglehold on the Serie A. But, as the new millenium dawned, Rome ruled the roost. Lazio won the 99/00 Scudetto, while Roma claimed top honours in 00/01.
Lazio were able to spend silly money under the ownership of Sergio Cragnotti, bringing in a slew of stars every summer. It was fun while it lasted. And, in March 2001, Lazio were still very much in the mix. As they hosted Juventus both needed to win in order to catch up with Roma who led the pack. We watched the match.