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1983 European Cup Final (Athens)
Hamburg 1 Juventus 0
Hamburg: Stein, Kaltz,Wehmeyer, Jakobs, Hieronymus, Rolff, Milewski, Groh, Hrubesch (capt), Magath, Bastrop (Van Heesen)
Juventus: Zoff, Gentile, Cabrini, Bonini, Brio, Scirea (capt), Bettega, Tardelli, Rossi (Marocchino), Platini, Boniek
The 1982 World Cup was won in dramatic style by an Italian team built on a strong defence containing the likes of Gentile, Scirea and Cabrini with veteran goalkeeper Dino Zoff behind them. The star of the tournament had been striker Paolo Rossi who had scored six goals including one in the final where Marco Tardelli had also scored from midfield. The other stars of the World Cup were Zbigniew Boniek of Poland and Michel Platini of France who had both played a huge part in guiding their teams to the semi-finals. At the start of the 1982/83 season, all of these World Cup stars played for one club team - Juventus. Juve, despite all of their money and glamour, had yet to win a European Cup and had now decided to spend big in order to achieve their ultimate goal. As a result, despite English clubs having won the previous six competitions, it was the Turin side that were overwhelming favourites to win the European Cup for the first time.
This season saw England provide two teams to the competition with holders Aston Villa kicking off their campaign in front of an empty Villa Park as a UEFA punishment for their fans misbehaviour at the semi-final in Brussels the previous April. Despite their lack of support, Villa roared into a 3-0 lead against Besiktas, but were knocked back when Jimmy Rimmer, their goalkeeper who had been substituted in the previous Final, made a mistake which led to a goal for the Turks and put the tie back in the balance. In the return, however, Villa held out for a 0-0 draw to see them safely through. English champions Liverpool had little trouble in disposing of the Irish team Dundalk.
The clash between two former European champions saw Celtic get the better of Ajax - who included the returned Johan Cruyff - as they followed a 2-2 draw in Scotland with an impressive 2-1 victory in Amsterdam. In the East Germany v West Germany derby match, Hamburg got the better of Dynamo Berlin when a 2-0 second leg win at home gave them a 3-1 aggregate win. CSKA Sofia, who had reached the semi-finals the previous season knocked out Monaco with two extra-time goals.
Juventus looked to be in appropriately confident mood as goals form Platini, Rossi, Brio and Cabrini scored against Hvidovre in Denmark put them in the driving seat, with Boniek, Platini and Rossi scoring in the return. They followed that up with a second round tie against the dangerous Belgians of Standard Liege led by Dutch legend Arie Haan. Tardelli gave Juve the lead in Liege with a simple header from a Marocchino corner, before an unnecessary push by Gentile allowed Standard to equalise with a second half penalty, but two early strikes from Rossi in the return game saw the Italian champions through to the quarter-finals. Liverpool also progressed, despite an embarrassing 1-0 defeat to HJK Helsinki, as they recovered to win 5-1 on aggregate.
Dynamo Kiev found themselves through to the last eight without having to play against the Albanians Nentori Tirana after they withdrew due to ‘conflicting brands of communist ideology,’ Also comfortably through went Hamburg who thrashed Olympiakos 5-0 on aggregate, and Aston Villa who won 2-0 away to Dinamo Bucharest thanks to two Gary Shaw goals, and followed up with a 4-2 win at home with Shaw scoring a hat-trick. Two dangerous teams, however, went out in the second round - CSKA Sofia were beaten on away goals by Sporting Lisbon, while Celtic were narrowly beaten by Real Sociedad.
The undoubted highlight of the quarter-final draw was the pairing of the cup holders Aston Villa with the overwhelming favourites to take their title Juventus. At Villa Park, Juventus gained the upper hand within 40 seconds as Rossi rose to head home a Cabrini cross and give his team the perfect start. Villa did recover to equalise in the second half as Cowans brilliantly finished a move that he had started, but with eight minutes to go, Juve’s two expensive imports combined to give the Italian side a crucial advantage as Platini rolled a pass through to Boniek who finished in emphatic style. Juventus never looked like slipping up in the second leg. A 25 yard shot from Platini and a header from Tardelli saw the tie won by half-time and an eventual aggregate score of 5-2 gave an accurate indication of the difference in class between the two sides. Juventus were now even greater favourites to be crowned European champions.
Liverpool were expected to have few problems against Widzew Lodz. The Poles had just emerged from their winter break and were shorn of stars like Boniek and Zmuda who had left for Italy after the World Cup. But in Poland a mistake by goalkeeper Grobbelaar who dropped a cross straight into the path of Tlokinski who scored easily allowed the Poles to get ahead. Liverpool then pressed forward, only to be denied by a series of brilliant saves from Mlynarczik, and with ten minutes remaining Widzew struck again when substitute Wraga headed powerfully home. Liverpool’s second leg task was made even harder when Dalglish became unwell and was unable to play, but they still bombarded the Lodz goal in the games early stages. But when Widzew broke away and earned a penalty after Grobbelaar brought down Smolarek, it was Tlokinski who stepped up to score once more for the Poles and effectively end Liverpools hopes. The home side did conjure up two late goals, but it was too little too late and Widzew Lodz had unexpectedly reached the semi-finals.
Hamburg continued their impressive march through the competition as they gained a 3-0 win away to Dynamo Kiev thanks to a hat-trick from their Danish wide man Lars Bastrup. The Germans main concern for the second leg was how to attract a decent crowd for what was effectively a dead rubber. Kiev did manage to win the game 2-1, but never threatened to overturn the first leg lead. The fourth team to reach the semi-finals was Real Sociedad who came back from a 1-0 win away to Sporting Lisbon to progress thanks to goals form Larranaga and Bakero in Spain.
The semi-final draw saw the two teams that had ended Englands dominance of the competition, Juventus and Widzew Lodz, drawn to play each other. This meant that Zbigniew Boniek would return home to play his former club. In Turin it was Boniek who was the difference between the two sides. Juventus had made another great start when Tardelli’s 25 yard shot was deflected into the net, but Widzew matched their more illustrious opponents for the rest of the first half. As the game approached the hour mark, however, Boniek ran half the length of the pitch, beat three men, exchanged passes with Rossi and fired in a blistering right foot shot. The Polish goalkeeper brilliantly got a hand to the shot, but he could only push it into the path of Bettega who side-footed the ball home. After half an hour of the return game, the tie was effectively over as Rossi made it 3-0 on aggregate, although there was still controversy to come. In the second half, after Surlit had pulled a goal back for Widzew, a bottle was thrown from the crowd at one of the linesmen causing referee Charles Corver to take the teams off the pitch for twenty minutes while the culprit was apprehended by the police. When they returned, Surlit scored again for the Poles, but a late penalty from Platini soothed the Italians nerves and saw Juventus safely through.
Languishing in seventh place in the league, Real Sociedad were looking to the European Cup to keep their season alive. With Spanish international goalkeeper Arconada, midfielder Zamoroa and forwards Lopez Ufarte and Uralde in the team they had every reason to be optimistic. But they were rocked after an hour of the first leg in San Sebastian when Hamburg scored an away goal as Rolff headed home a Hartwig cross. The Spaniards responded on 74 minutes when Gajate equalised from a Diego corner to keep them in the tie. In Germany, Hamburg had all the play and passed up a number of good chances to score before Jakobs finally slotted the ball home from ten yards. Sociedad were still not beaten, however, and Alvarez equalised four minutes later, but this time the scoring was not over and it was von Heeson who pounced on a loose ball and struck an 82nd minute winner to send Hamburg into the final.
Hamburg may have been the underdogs for the final, but they had their own stars in the team. The focal point of the side was burly striker Horst Hrubesch who was fed inviting crosses by German international full back Manni Kaltz and supported by Danish forward Lars Bastrup. Felix Magath was the Germans midfield general, ably supported by Jimmy Hartwig and Wolfgang Roth. In charge was manager Ernst Happel who had come so close with Bruges five years earlier.
The Olympic Stadium in Athens was packed to the rafters for the final with the majority supporting Juventus. But on the night, the form book was turned upside down. Right from the start it was Hamburg who dominated the match and they took an early lead when, in the 8th minute, Magath ran with the ball before sending a dipping 25 yard shot over the shoulder of the helpless Dino Zoff in goal. Everyone waited for Boniek, Platini, Tardelli, Rossi and the rest of the Juve superstars to take hold of the game, but instead it was Magath who controlled the game with the Hamburg wingers Milewski and Groh posing the most threat.
Stein in the Hamburg goal was called upon to make a couple of important saves, but it was actually the Germans who looked more likely to score. Kaltz had a shot cleared off the line by Boniek, and both Groh and Magath had golden opportunities to increase their lead but failed to take them. Little came from the Juve stars with Platini proving surprisingly ineffective and Rossi being substituted before the hour by manager Trapattoni.
Hamburg held on to their 1-0 lead until the final whistle to emerge as deserving winners. The only sour note was the collision between Bastrup and the notorious Gentile which left the Dane with a broken jaw. Whether or not the result had come as a result of the Italians underestimating Hamburg, there was no doubt that the German side had been much the better team. Juventus were forced to go away licking their wounds. Not only had their millions failed to bring them their first European Cup title, but they had also failed to win the Italian Championship and so would be unable to make up for their bitter disappointment the following season. Hamburg, however, had shocked the world to bring the trophy back to Germany after six years of English dominance. Ernst Happel had finally succeeded in winning a European Cup Final, Felix Magath had come out on top against the finest midfield players in the world, and Hamburg had gained revenge for West Germanys World Cup Final defeat to Italy just a year earlier.
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