Mikhail Gorbachev - USSR
Mikhail Gorbachev was instrumental in the fall of the Berlin wall and the end of the cold war.

Berlin wall built
"The Anti Fascist Protection Barrier".

the berlin wall
The Berlin wall was used as a canvas for many artists.

East Germany Vs West Germany

East Germany Vs West Germany

During the Cold war relations between the two governing authorities of East and West Germany held an uneasy peace and each side were desperate to prove their ethos was the right one, the Allied powers were in control of West Germany and West Berlin and the Soviet Union were running East Germany and East Berlin. Tension was at an all-time high and competition was fierce, one place where the battle was firmly in the public eye was football with both teams eager to prove their superiority over the other and gain prestige for their country.

Germany was the most highly charged of all Cold War flashpoints and the situation in the early 70’s made the 1974 World cup one of the most politically influenced events of all time.

The 1974 World Cup was hosted by of all people, West Germany and everybody was on alert and security was high as the potential for terrorist attack and supporter clashes were high, only 2 years before the Munich Olympic Games had been marred by Palestinian terrorist attacks and various communist factions were believed to be planning operations.

East Versus West

All eyes were on the draw as West Germany and East Germany drew each other in the First round of the 1974 World Cup and the World drew its breath. This was to be the edgiest match of this and potentially any World Cup. Tensions were high between these two neighbouring nations that had only recognised each other as a state 2 years earlier and this would be the first time they would face off in a competitive match. Football fans any political leaders were eager to see which team would win but the smart money was on the star studded home team who were full time professionals as well as defending European champions against the part time East German outfit who were still respected in their own right. The match was to be the last in the group and potentially the group decider.

By the time of the match the group had already been decided as whatever the result both teams would qualify for the next round due to previous results. But if the East Germans could beat the West they would top the group and get a more favourable draw. Many Eastern Germans were unhappy with communist rule and were eager for the West to win, only a specially selected few East German fans came to the match, their number were only 1,500 of the total 60,000 fans in the stadium that day.

The game itself was a nervy affair with few chances, perhaps the occasion had got to the West German team who found it tough to break down a stubborn East German defence and the game was decided by a counter attacking long ball from East Germany which was picked up by Jürgen Sparwasser who managed to chip the ball over Sepp Maier to score the winning goal which put them to the top of the group.

In an ironic twist of fate the victory handed the East German team a tougher draw or Brazil and the Netherlands and they were eliminated whereas the West Germans went all the way to the final against the Netherland which they were able to win and become World Champions.

Reunification of German football

The two German teams were drawn against each other again for the European Championship in 1992 but before they had chance to play the game the German wall fell and Germany was reunited allowing them to play as a united nation for then on.