Glasgow 1960 - Madrid and Frankfurt create a classic
Monday, August 8, 2022
As Real Madrid and Eintracht Frankfurt prepare to meet in the UEFA Super Cup, former UEFA technical director Andy Roxburgh looks back at the memorable 1960 European Champion Clubs' Club final between the two teams that he witnessed as a Glasgow teenager.
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Andy Roxburgh was a 16-year-old schoolboy on Queen’s Park’s books when Real Madrid met Eintracht Frankfurt in the 1960 European Cup final at Hampden Park in Glasgow. With the game at their home ground, Roxburgh and the other players, including a teenage Alex Ferguson, were able to see with their own eyes one of the greatest games of all time.
Ferenc Puskaś scored four, Alfredo Di Stéfano three, as Madrid put on a masterclass to defeat the German side 7–3. Roxburgh went on to become Scotland manager and then technical director at UEFA – a position he now holds at the Asian Football Confederation – but after all this time the memory of that final still burns brightly. As Madrid and Frankfurt prepare to meet again, Roxburgh recalls the game of a lifetime.
‘Sea of faces’
“The first thing I remember was this sea of faces. Officially there was something like 127,000 people there. There were no floodlights at Hampden at that time. It’s a Wednesday night, a 7:30 kick-off. It’s a May evening. It was a great night for football, perfect conditions. And you’ve got this incredible crowd.
“Everybody’s excited because Eintracht Frankfurt had beaten Rangers 12–4 over two legs in the semi-finals. Their reputation going into that match was sky high in Glasgow. People thought Frankfurt were from another planet. The trouble was, they didn’t realise that Real Madrid were from another universe. Real had won four titles in a row and this was going to be the fifth. I was just desperate to see Ferenc Puskás play live for the first time. He was my hero.
Madrid come from behind
“Out come the two teams, Real Madrid all in white. Right away that made them stand out, but Frankfurt showed their quality from the beginning and even opened the scoring. Everybody took a deep breath going, ‘Frankfurt are a really good side.’ Then, before half an hour had gone, Real Madrid score twice. The first is a kind of ordinary goal at the back post from Di Stéfano. For the second, the goalkeeper parries and Di Stéfano makes it 2–1.
“Then comes the moment right on half time. Puskás steals the ball just inside the left-hand side of the penalty box and he rifles it in with his left foot, right in the top corner. That was when the whole thing lit up. Suddenly there was this moment of magic and it was 3–1.
Four in a row from Puskás
“Puskás then goes on to add a second-half hat-trick. In other words, he scored four goals in a row. The next is a penalty, which Puskás scores, and then comes the pièce de resistance… From a corner for Frankfurt, Madrid win the ball and counter. From the halfway line Gento runs onto the ball. He races to the dead-ball line, whips it in with his left foot and Puskás heads the ball into the back of the net.
“The next goal is a masterclass. The ball is whacked into the box. Puskás takes the pace off the ball and turns all in one movement, and just smashes it into the top corner. He has now scored four goals. The crowd is going berserk. With every goal the intensity is building; this is going from being an interesting contest at the beginning to a masterclass.
‘Frankfurt fight on
“Despite all of this, Frankfurt didn’t give up. They’re 6–1 down and then Erwin Stein scores a minute later to make it 6–2. But the technical ability of the Real Madrid players was just exceptional, the fluid movement and combination play. For the last goal they played the combination through the middle and Di Stéfano races towards the penalty box and smashes it in the bottom corner. It was just fantastic. Unbelievably, Stein comes back again at 75 minutes and it's 7–3.
“Frankfurt have to be complimented. They were a very good team, had a lot of quality and never gave up. But the other lot were just unbelievable. At the end, the crowd wouldn’t go away. They just applauded. Some people have said it was for 15 minutes. Everyone was standing anyway except a few in the grandstand, but this was a genuine standing ovation. That Wednesday night in Glasgow was remarkable. In fading light, those white jerseys just seemed to stand out.”
This article appears in the UEFA Super Cup programme