Panenka revolutionizes the penalty

first_imgAntonín Panenka never had the Maradona talent, the Pelé’s wit, Zidane’s class, changing Cruyff speed, the power of Ronaldo, the claw of Say Stéfano nor the touch of Beckenbauer, but none of that was necessary to be one of the most influential men in the history of football. If he did your determination… and his cold blood.-Where are you going to launch it?-In the middle, as always.That was the conversation he had Panenka with Viktor, goalkeeper of the Czechoslovakian team, minutes before the penalty shootout of the Euro Cup final disputed in Yugoslavia 1976, from which Czechoslovakia was champion to surprise from around the world after beating the two World Cup finalists 74: the Netherlands in the semifinals and Germany in the final. “In front was Sepp Maier, the best goalkeeper in the world, when he said that he almost gave me something, “says Viktor years later.The end was over 2-2 with a goal from German Hölzenbein in 89 ‘. That goal undermined the morale of a Czechoslovakia that has already saw lifting the European title. After suffering a lot in overtime, the Czechoslovaks managed to resist the Teutonic onslaught and they reached the penalty shootout, probably the most influential in football history. Uli Hoeness, one of the great stars of Bayern and the mannschaft missed the eighth pitch. All penalties had been scored previously so the fifth of the Czechoslovaks was decisive. Panenka, an unknown Bohemians 1905 midfielder, would execute the shot. Antonín took a run and sprinted towards the ball. Looked like ready to burst the ball, but a second before his boot hit the leather, the Czechoslovak midfielder he stopped abruptly to bite the ball. Maier was already defeated when the ball entered smoothly, at half height, without wanting to disturb anyone, through the center of the goal. Czechoslovakia was champion of Europe and Panenka had invented the most famous penalty in history. As he ran towards his companions jumping with joy, he was not aware that all the soccer fans had A patent office has opened on the lawn.That penalty was the cherry on top of a dazzling Czechoslovak tournament. In that selection they played seven players from slovan bratislava who a few years earlier won the Recopa final against Barcelona. It was the golden years of bohemian football. However, no one expected the Central European team to go that far, and even less than will eliminate Cruyff’s Holland and Rinus Michel, and the current European and World Champion, the Germany of Beckenbauer, Müller, Maier and company: Two teams whose base were the two best teams in the world at the time, Ajax and Bayern, who won three consecutive European Cups each in the 1970s.And is that Czechoslovakia win at the Eurocup, not only marked a revolution in the penalty kicks, but the end of the gold generation of two of the best teams in history.last_img