||21 Mar 1961
1998 (joint record)
Lothar Matthäus is one of the most successful players ever in world
football. He was born on March 21st 1961 in Erlangen and began his career
in a local club called FC Herzogenaurach. As an 18 year old in 1979 he
moved to Borussia Mönchengladbach one of greatest clubs in Europe
at that time. It was in that club Matthäus started to show class and
soon he was joining the German national team. He was in the squad who won
the European Championship in 1980 and two years later he made his World
Cup debut against Chile when he came on as a substiute in a game they won
4-1. West Germany reached the final that year, but Matthäus only took
part in one other game, a substitute there as well, and didn't achieve
the loser's medal in the final.
In 1984 he moved to Bayern Munich and helped them win the league twice
and the cup once before participating in the 1986 World Cup in Mexico.
West Germany progressed through the rounds without making great impression.
But Matthäus was having a good World Cup and scored the winner against
Morocco in the round of 16. In the final itself, Matthäus was given
a man-marking job on Maradona. But the little Argentinian had too many
tricks up his sleave as West Germany lost their second consecutive World
By the time the World Cup was held in Italy in 1990, Matthäus was
established in Inter Milan. He had led them to the Italian league title
in 1989 and here he played most of his World Cup games on his homeground,
Stadio San Siro. It was to be Matthäus best World Cup. Germany were
by far the best team and Matthäus scored four goals from his midfield
position. In the final in Rome, Argentina were once again the opponents,
but this time neither Maradona or anyone else could stop Matthäus
and Germany. He was voted European Player Of The Year that year and Player
Of The Year in Germany as well.
He won honours in Europe with Inter Milan, before returning back to Germany
and Bayern Munich. In 1994 he was supposed to be playing in his last World
Cup, operating this time in the sweeper's position. Germany were knocked
out by Bulgaria in the quarterfinal and in the same game Matthäus
joined Uwe Seeler, Wladislav Zmuda and Maradona as a recordholder of most
World Cup matches with 21. Against all odds he turned up in France 98 as
a replacement for the injured sweeper Mattias Sammer. Matthäus had
been absent from the national side for years when Vogts brought him back
into the squad for the World Cup. After being on the bench in Germany's
victory over USA, he came in as a substitute against Yugoslavia and set
a new record for appearances in the World Cup with 22. He played in all
the rest of Germany's matches until Croatia knocked them out in the quarterfinal,
making his total to 25.
He retired as a 39 year old following Germany's awful
Euro 2000 tournament. A year earlier he lost for Bayern Munich against Manchester United
in a dramatic Champions League final. It was the only major trophy that eluded him.
| 1982 | 1986
| 1990 | 1994
| 1998 |
Info on how
the World Cup was founded and about the trophy as well.
on every match in every tournament.
Interesting columns about the past, present and future of the World Cup.
with appearances in the World Cup. Detailed info on every country.
of many of the most influential players in history.
An A-Z collection
of strange and different stories in World Cup history.
A big collection
of various statistics and records.
since it was introduced in 1966.
knowledge about the WC. Three different levels. No prizes, just for fun.
lots of stuff. For instance Best Goals, Best Players and Best Matches.
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