Historical Rivalry

France-Germany: A Grand Classic in the Church of Football

German goalkeeper Harald Schumacher, left, and defender Hans-Peter Briegel, right, stop France's William Ayache during the World Cup semifinal in Guadalajara, Mexico, on June 25, 1986.

Harald Schumacher, the German goalkeeper, and defender Hans-Peter Briegel (right) stop William Ayache of France in the semifinals of the 1986 World Cup in Guadalajara, Mexico. (AP)

As luck would have it, Rio’s Estadio Maracana, considered a “temple” of world football, will host this classic dream match between two giants of world football: France and Germany. The neighbors will meet Friday for the fourth time in World Cup history. Their two previous meetings in 1982 and 1986, won by West Germany, were memorable.

France - Allemagne.

Manfred Kaltz of West Germany (left) hits the ball beyond Gérard Janvion of France, in the semifinals of between West Germany and France, in Seville, Spain, on July 8, 1982. (AP)

July 8, 1982. semifinals. Seville, Spain. 

An unforgettable match in the warm night of Seville. The two teams are tied at one apiece at halftime, but then the game switches into madness. France quickly takes the lead, sending Tresor and Giresse into ecstatic joy. But the Germans then equalized and snapped a shot on goal. Thirty-two years later, the night in Seville is legend.

June 25, 1986. semifinals. Guadalajara, Mexico.

At Jalisco Monumental, Germany beats France 2-0. The “Platini Generation” lets slip a last chance to win the World Cup.

July 4, 2014. quarterfinals. Rio De Janeiro, Brazil.

France has a better face with a young and dynamic team: watch Benzema, Pogba and Sakho closely.  But the Mannschaft which has not lost its status as favorites.

(Material from AFP was used in this report)

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