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Panenka makes his name as Czechoslovakia beat West Germany in EURO 1976 final shoot-out

Czechoslovakia 2-2 West Germany (Czechoslovakia win 5-3 on penalties)
Antonín Panenka applied a shoot-out coup de grace never to be forgotten.

EURO 1976 final highlights: Czechoslovakia stun Germans

As in the semi-final against hosts Yugoslavia, West Germany came from two goals down to force extra time in this thrilling final. Dieter Müller and Bernd Hölzenbein, in the dying seconds, cancelled out first-half strikes from Ján Švehlík and Karol Dobiaš.

This time, though, Franz Beckenbauer and his team-mates were unable to find a winner in the additional half-hour and for the first time, a major international tournament final went to penalties. The first seven spot kicks found their target before Uli Hoeness fired over for the holders; Antonín Panenka applied the coup de grace.

EURO 1976: All you need to know

The defending champions got off to a poor start when Berti Vogts gave the ball away close to his own penalty area after eight minutes. Koloman Gögh drew a fine save from Sepp Maier, but Zdeněk Nehoda was quick to cross from the right, and Švehlík arrived from deep to drive the ball in.

Despite the setback West Germany appeared to have found their poise, only to concede again after Hans-Georg Schwarzenbeck fouled Gögh. Marián Masny's free-kick was only half cleared and Dobiaš's angled shot sneaked past Maier.

EURO 1976 top scorer: Watch Dieter Müller goals

Within three minutes Helmut Schön's world and European champions were back in the game when Rainer Bonhof's cross found Müller, whose acrobatic volley nestled in the net. With Beckenbauer again making his long runs from deep, the world champions threatened to overrun their opponents, only to find Ivo Viktor in the form of his life.

The 34-year-old made a string of saves, pushing away Heinz Flohe's drive and a trademark Bonhof free-kick. But just when it seemed he had done enough, Viktor's resistance was broken by Hölzenbein's header from a Bonhof corner. Extra time followed, and then a penalty shoot-out.

After Hoeness missed West Germany's fourth attempt it was up to Panenka to win the match for Czechoslovakia, and he did so in audacious fashion, achieving immortality by waiting for Maier to dive before chipping down the middle. "If it were patentable, I'd have it patented," he joked.


Antonín Panenka in action in the semi-final
Antonín Panenka in action in the semi-finalIcon Sport via Getty Images

Antonín Panenka, Czechoslovakia midfielder: "After each training session I used to stay behind after a game with our goalkeeper and take penalties – we would play for a bar of chocolate or a glass of beer. Since he was a very good goalkeeper it became an expensive proposition for me. So, sometimes before going to sleep I tried to think of ways of getting the better of him, to recoup my losses.

"I got the idea that if I delayed the kick and just lightly chipped it, a goalkeeper who dived to the corner of the goal could not jump back up into the air, and this became the basis of my philosophy. I started slowly to test it and apply it in practice. As a side effect I started to gain weight, because I was winning the bets. I started to use it in friendlies, in minor leagues, and eventually I perfected it so I used it in the main league as well. The culmination was when I used it at the European Championship. It was the easiest and simplest way of scoring a goal. It's a simple recipe."

EURO 1976: Team of the Tournament


Czechoslovakia: Viktor; Dobiaš (Veselý 94), Čapkovič, Ondruš (c), Pivarník, Gögh; Panenka, Móder, Švehlík (Jurkemík 80); Masný, Nehoda
Substitutes: Biros, Gallis, Vencel
Coach: Václav Ježek

West Germany: Maier; Vogts, Dietz, Schwarzenbeck, Beckenbauer (c); Bonhof, Hoeness, Beer (Bongartz 80); Wimmer (Flohe 46), Müller, Hölzenbein
Substitutes: Nogly, Kaltz, Kargus
Coach: Helmut Schön

Referee: Sergio Gonella (Italy)