Rinat Dassayev - USSR
Rinat Dassayev was a great goalkeeper, his coolness
under pressure and safe handling gives confidence
to his defence. He has a knack of always being in
the right place at the right time. He was one of
the most consistent goalkeepers in the world, as
during 1986 he was regarded as being one of the
world’s greatest goalkeeper’s. Dassayev started
his career playing for his local team, Volga Astrakhan
in the second division. He played as a centre forward
and then decided to become a goalkeeper, because
the regular goalkeeper of that team was frequently
injured. He then went onto become the goalkeeper
of Spartak Moscow, one of the top Russian football
clubs. He made his international debut in 1979 a
game which USSR beat East Germany 1- 0.
Dassayev went on to play for USSR in the Olympics
in 1980, where the Soviet team reached third place.
However his reputation was really enhanced during
both the 1982 and 1986 world cup tournaments. In
the World cup, he has played a total of 8 games
and has only conceded 9 goals, that it only just
over 1 goal a game, which is an extremely impressive
record. He made some excellent goalkeeping displays
in the 1986 world cup in their games against Canada
and France. After the 1986 World cup, he was still
in top form for the Soviet’s and for his club Spartak
Moscow. At the 1988 European championships, Dassayev
was outstanding for the Soviets, making some brilliant
saves, and despite the Soviets losing 2- 0 in the
final to Holland, he made a hatful of excellent
saves and denied Gullit and Van Basten from scoring
Dassayev also played in the 1990 world cup finals
in Italy; he captained USSR in their opening game
Emilo Butragueno - Spain
During his teenage years, Emilo Butragueno had
two loves, football and basketball. He decided to
make a career out of football. Between the years
1982 to 1984 he played for Castilla, he scored many
goals for them and was a top striker for the club.
Butragueno made his international debut against
Wales as a substitute in 1984. In 1984 he went on
to play for Real Madrid, he had an excellent upfront
partnership with Mexican striker Hugo Sanchez as
the two brilliant footballers’ complemented each
other perfectly. In their first four seasons together,
real Madrid won the league four years running. During
the 1986 world cup, Butragueno’s performance was
brilliant. He ended the 1986 world cup as second
top scorer, just behind Gary Lineker. He scored
l in their first round match against Northern Ireland,
and in their second round match against Denmark
he was spectacular helping Spain beat Denmark 5-1
by scoring 4 goals.
He helped Spain qualify for the 1990 world cup
by scoring crucial goals for them.
He played for Spain in the 1990 world cup, however
he failed to score any goals and Spain eventually
went out to Yugoslavia in the second round.
Gary Lineker - England
Gary Lineker’s goal against Argentina in the quarter
finals of the 1986 World cup in Mexico established
him as world class striker, the goal against Argentina
was also his sixth goal of the tournament, and that
made him the top scorer of the 1986 world cup. This
was an achievement which no other English footballer
has accomplished. His excellent display started
in the game against Poland, where he scored a first
half hat trick, and he followed up that excellent
scoring performance with two goals in a second rounds
match against Paraguay. In fact Lineker nearly scored
a seventh goal against Argentina, with a header
from a John Barnes cross, which went just wide of
the post, if he would have scored that England would
have equalized but that did not happen. Gary Lineker
began his footballing career at Leicester City,
where he was scoring at an impressive rate with
one goal every two matches he played. In the summer
of 1985 he moved to Everton for a fee of £800,000,
and Everton in turn had to alter their style of
play to accommodate Linker’s footballing talents,
in the season of the 1986 World cup in Mexico, Lineker
scored 39 goals for Everton and he was crowned footballer
of the year. After his spectacular performance in
the 1986 world cup, he moved Barcelona for £2.75
million, at Barcelona he made an immediate impact
scoring frequently for them, however just before
Euro 88, he became ill with hepatitis, and his shooting
talents abandoned him. In 1989 Gary Lineker moved
to Tottenham, and he scored 24 goals in 38 matches
in the 1989/1990 season. He also scored four goals
during the 1990 World cup, he scored England’s goal
in the very disappointing opening Group F match
in the 1990 world cup against the Republic of Ireland.
He kept his cool in the classic quarter final match
against Cameroon by converting two penalties for
England to secure them a place in the Semi- Finals.
He also equalized for England late on in the second
half in their semi final match against West Germany,
however England later on lost that match in Penalties.
Lineker became captain of England right after the
world cup, and scored in his first match as captain
against Hungry in September 1990, he then regularly
partnered Steve Bull up front for England for the
rest of 1990. Lineker retired from international
football after the European championships in 1992.
He scored 48 goals in his 80 appearances for England,
a total bettered only by Bobby Charlton.
He is one of the World cups leading goal scorers
of all time to this date, with 10 goals in the games
he played in.
Pierre Littbarski - West Germany
Littbarski started his footballing career playing
for German team Hertha Zehlendorf. He then played
for Köln in the Bundesliga, where he went from strength
to strength. He entertained the fans with his amazing
ball control, dribbling skills and speed on the
turn. Littbarski made his international debut in
19821 against Austria for a world cup qualifying
match. Littbarski then went on to star for West
Germany in the 1982 world cup final against Italy.
Littbarski was outstanding in the final despite
West Germany losing 3-1. After suffering from injury
in autumn 1985, his dream of starring for the Germans
in Mexico 1986 looked in ruins; however he came
back from injury and regained his fitness. Despite
not playing a full match in the 1986 World cup,
he became a national hero in the quarter final match
against Mexico, where he came of f the bench as
a substitute and scored a penalty in the penalty
shoot out, which ensured Germany’s place in the
semi final. He continued his impressive football
during Euro 88, as he was hailed as being one of
the best attackers in the tournament. He was a regular
feature in the 1990 world cup in Italy where he
nearly even scored in the final against Argentina.
He was a world cup winner with West Germany in 1990.
Nery Pumpido - Argentina
Nery Pumpido prides himself as being a professional
goalkeeper who keeps total concentration and self-control
in all the matches he played in. His goalkeeping
career is excellent in its own right. He joined
his home town football club, Union Santa Fe, at
the age of 19. He made his international debut against
Paraguay in 1983. It was not until the 1986 world
cup finals where Pumpido was finally regarded as
a top world class goalkeeper, he was excellent in
the 1986 world cup finals, and Argentina’s 3-2 victory
over West Germany in 1986 provided Pumpido with
the first of two world champion’s medals. His luck
was not as good in the world cup finals in 1990,
where he became injured in their second match against
USSR, and his world cup career came to an end.
Jorge Barruchaga - Argentina
Jorge Barruchaga is a midfielder whose excellent
vision enables him to cover back in defence even
when danger isn’t even apparent to other players.
He is always all over the pitch especially to take
a pass from a team mate under pressure and his technical
skill and mobility is second to none. As a youngster
Barruchaga devoted all his spare time to football.
In 1981 Barruchaga won himself a place in Argentina’s
line up at the World Youth cup in Australia. He
was signed immediately after the tournament by top
club Independiente and he then became a permanent
fixture for that club.
The 1986 World cup finals established Burruchaga
as being one of the top footballers in the world.
In the 1986 World cup finals Burruchaga played an
essential role in providing Diego Maradona with
a steady stream of passes so that the Argentinean
footballing great, could work his magical skill.
It was during the 1986 world cup final, where Burruchaga
earned his place in world cup hall of fame, when
he picked up a pass from Maradona and shot the ball
accurately into the net to score the winning goal
for Argentina. In the summer of 1986 he signed for
French club Nantes however he seriously injured
his knee at the beginning of the following season.
The injury put him out of action for the next six
months. Burruchaga went onto play for Argentina
in the 1990 world cup in Italy, he scored in Argentina’s
first round group game against USSR, and he played
impressively throughout that world cup, unfortunately
for Argentina they eventually lost the final against
West Germany 1 -0.