Spain 12–1 Malta

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Spain v Malta (1983)
Panorama Estadio Betis.jpg
The Estadio Benito Villamarín in Seville hosted the match
Event UEFA Euro 1984 qualifying
Group 7
Matchday 8
Spain qualified for UEFA Euro 1984
Date 21 December 1983 (1983-12-21)
Venue Estadio Benito Villamarín, Seville
Referee Erkan Göksel (Turkey)
Attendance 18,871

On 21 December 1983, Spain played Malta in the last qualifying match for UEFA Euro 1984. The game is often described as one of the most important in the Spanish national football team's history.[1]

Background[edit]

An original Spain shirt worn in the match by Antonio Maceda

Four days before the game, the Netherlands defeated Malta 5–0 and finished their qualification schedule with 13 points and a goal difference of +16. If Spain won their final qualifier and thus also finished on 13 points, then goal difference would decide which team qualified.

With a goal difference of +5, Spain would need to defeat Malta by a margin of 11 or more goals to qualify. The team had only managed to score 12 goals in their previous seven matches, and before the game the Maltese goalkeeper, John Bonello, said: "Spain couldn't even score 11 goals against a team of children."[citation needed]

After 17 December, and before Spain's match against Malta, the group 7 table stood as follows:

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
1  Netherlands 8 6 1 1 22 6 +16 13
2  Spain 7 5 1 1 12 7 +5 11
3  Republic of Ireland 8 4 1 3 20 10 +10 9
4  Iceland 8 1 1 6 3 13 −10 3
5  Malta 7 1 0 6 4 25 −21 2

Red = unable to qualify.

Match[edit]

Summary[edit]

Spain's only chance of qualifying for Euro 1984 was to defeat Malta by at least 11 goals.

When half-time came and the scoreline was 3–1 to Spain, few expected them to score enough goals to qualify. However, Juan Antonio Señor, who had missed a penalty kick awarded to Spain in the second minute of the first half, scored Spain's 12th and last goal in the 88th minute; Rafael Gordillo scored a 13th in the final minutes of the game but it was disallowed by the referee. That did not matter, however, as the Spaniards won by the 11-goal margin required for them to beat the Netherlands to qualification.[2]

Details[edit]

21 December 1983 (1983-12-21)
20:15 CET
Spain  12–1  Malta
Report Demanuele Goal 24'
Spain
Malta
GK 1 Francisco Buyo
CB 5 Andoni Goikoetxea
CB 3 José Antonio Camacho (c)
CB 4 Antonio Maceda YC 52'
CM 2 Juan Antonio Señor
CM 6 Rafael Gordillo YC 25'
CM 8 Víctor Muñoz
RM 10 Manuel Sarabia
LM 11 Hipólito Rincón Substituted off 88'
CF 7 Francisco José Carrasco
CF 9 Santillana
Substitutions:
FW 16 Marcos Alonso Substituted in 88'
Manager:
Miguel Muñoz
ESP-MLT 1983-12-21.svg
GK 1 John Bonello YC 50'
RB 3 Alex Azzopardi
CB 2 Emanuel Farrugia
CB 5 John Holland (c)
CB 6 Norman Buttigieg
LB 10 Emanuel Fabri YC 34'
CM 11 Michael Degiorgio Yellow cardYellow cardRed card 3', 76'
CM 9 Ernest Spiteri-Gonzi
CM 8 Ray Farrugia Substituted off 70'
CF 4 Simon Tortell YC 23'
CF 7 Silvio Demanuele
Substitutions:
DF 14 Mario Farrugia Substituted in 76'
Manager:
Victor Scerri

Assistant referees:
Yahya Diker (Turkey)
Özcan Oal (Turkey)

Match rules

  • 90 minutes.
  • Maximum of two substitutions.

Aftermath[edit]

The match was broadcast by RTVE in Spain. Afterwards, many claimed[citation needed] that the Maltese were paid to not play their best and to let Spain win by a large margin, and it was rumoured that words had been exchanged between Maltese and Spanish officials and players at half-time. No wrongdoing was ever proved.

The Malta Football Association launched an inquiry into the result, and its chairman George Abela (later the President of Malta) brought about changes to the national team. Abela said that a lack of facilities meant that the team lacked serious professional preparation for a tournament such as the European Championships, and the closeness of away fixtures (Malta had played in the Netherlands only four days prior to their 12–1 loss in Seville) was a further hindrance and such scheduling would be avoided in future.

Final table[edit]

Spain and the Netherlands finished the qualification stage level on 13 points, level on the aggregate score between them, level on goal difference, but Spain qualified on goals scored (24, two more than Netherlands' ones).

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
1  Spain (Q) 8 6 1 1 24 8 +16 13
2  Netherlands 8 6 1 1 22 6 +16 13
3  Republic of Ireland 8 4 1 3 20 10 +10 9
4  Iceland 8 1 1 6 3 13 −10 3
5  Malta 8 1 0 7 5 37 −32 2

Records[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]