Wednesday 23rd June 1982
GROUP ONE, Estadio Balaidos, Vigo. (17:15)
ITALY (0) 1 (Graziani 60)
CAMEROON (0) 1 (M’Bida 61)
Italy: Zoff; Gentile, Scirea, Collovati, Cabrini; Conti, Tardelli, Oriali, Antognoni; Rossi, Graziani
Cameroon: N’Kono; Kaham, Onana, M’Bom, Aoudou, N’Djeya; Kunde, M’Bida, Abega; Milla, Tokoto
The final game in Group One was finely balanced. In theory, Italy should’ve thumped Cameroon, but this Italy side had not found their touch in this World Cup up to now and had struggled in both their matches. Cameroon knew they needed to win to get through to the second phase, and for Italy a draw would be enough to go through with Poland from this group. Italy’s abject performance in the group phase so far was illustrated by Bruno Conti putting his shot wide from six yards out with only the keeper to beat. Italy created plenty of chances, they just weren’t able to get any of them on target. Then on the hour, Paolo Rossi crossed right-footed from the left wing and Graziani got up highest to loop his header over N’Kono. It was the first goal Cameroon had conceded in the competition so far, but they fought back immediately as M’Bida hooked a shot in from close range barely a minute after going behind. The Africans just couldn’t push for a winner and so Italy went through by virtue of having scored one more goal than Cameroon. Italy would now go into Group C for the Second Phase, along with Brazil. Poland were confirmed in Group A, along with Belgium. For Cameroon, they could be proud of their performance in remaining unbeaten.
GROUP THREE, Estadio Jose Rico Perez, Alicante. (21:00)
ARGENTINA (1) 2 (Passarella 23, Bertoni 52)
EL SALVADOR (0) 0
Argentina: Fillol; Olguin, Passarella, Tarantini, Galvan; Bertoni (Diaz), Gallego, Ardiles, Calderon (Santamaria), Maradona; Kempes
El Salvador: Mora; Jovel, Osorto (Diaz), Rodriguez, Recinos; Ventura (Alfaro), Rugamas, Huezo; Gonzalez, Rivas, Ramirez
With Belgium and Hungary drawing in Elche the day before, Argentina knew anything other than a win would see them bow out after just three matches of their first ever defence of the World Cup. El Salvador had regained some pride by only losing 0-1 to Belgium having conceded 10 in their opening match, although this was the game they really feared. But Argentina were still not into their stride in this tournament, evidenced by Kempes hitting the bar from six yards early on. In the nineteenth minute, Calderon was brought down in the box and Argentina had a penalty. The contact had seemed minimal but Passarella blasted the kick down the middle and Argentina lead 1-0.
Argentina should’ve added to that goal before the break but early into the second half they did when a well worked goal when Daniel Bertoni curled a lovely shot left-footed into the far corner having beaten three tackles. Argentina were comfortable winners and went through in second place behind Belgium. Hungary’s record score proving irrelevant. Argentina were through into Group C with Brazil and Italy. The archetypal Group of Death.
GROUP SIX, Estadio Benito Villamarin, Seville. (21:00)
BRAZIL (2) 4 (Zico 28, 31, Falcao 64, Serginho 70)
NEW ZEALAND (0) 0
Brazil: Waldir; Leandro, Luizinho, Oscar (Edinho), Junior; Socrates, Cerezo, Falcao, Eder; Serginho (Paulo Isidoro), Zico
New Zealand: van Hattum; Dods, Almond, Elrick, Herbert; MacKay, Cresswell (Turner), Sumner, Boath; Rufer (Cole), Wooddin
The qualifiers from this group had already been decided after USSR draw with Scotland saw them join Brazil. New Zealand, in their first ever World Cup appearance, were just hoping to keep the score down. Brazil were soon into their lovely passing football and one move cut open the defence only for Cerezo to fire over. Zico then tried a nonchalant back heel which went just wide. But in the 28th minute, Leandro crossed from the right and with it curling away from him, Zico acrobatically volleyed the ball in for the opening goal. Within minutes they were at it again as Socrates again found Leandro as the overlap on the right and his cross was again turned in by Zico, although less acrobatically.
Falcao got in on the act in the second half as he was able to run far too far and beat the keeper on his near post. Six minutes later a patient build-up saw Junior clip the ball over the defence to Zico on the left-hand side of the area and he played it inside for Serginho to score. The Brazilian number 9 often looked out of place with this technically brilliant team, but he had at last opened his account for the tournament. Brazil were through with 100% record.
So two of the Second Phase groups were sorted.
Group A – Poland, Belgium, USSR
Group C – Italy, Argentina, Brazil