GREATEST GAME EDITION
GREATEST GAME EDITION
Cymru 1-0 Germany – 5 June 1991 – Cardiff Arms Park, Cardiff.
Cymru XI: Southall (GK), Aizelwood, Bodin, Melville, Ratcliffe (c), Phillips, Horne, Nicholas, Hughes, Rush, Saunders (Speed 89).
Goals: Rush (69).
Terry Yorath is best remembered by Cymru fans for narrowly missing out on qualification for the 1994 FIFA World Cup finals, but in addition to a playing career that saw him make 59 appearances and captain his country between 1969 and 1981, he also masterminded two famous victories in the capital, including this memorable night against reigning world champions Germany.
Germany had lifted the World Cup the year before they arrived in Cardiff for this UEFA EURO 1992 qualifier, and now under the management of Berti Vogts, brought a host of star names who had shone in Italy. Rudi Völler, Jurgen Klinsmann, Andreas Brehme and captain Lothar Matthaus were all named in the starting line-up, but Cymru boasted a front three of Mark Hughes, Ian Rush and Dean Saunders, and it was Rush who would score the decisive goal midway through the second half as Cymru claimed a famous victory when he capitalised on a fine ball through the middle from Paul Bodin.
“It was an amazing night - something I will never forget,” explained Rush to BBC Radio Wales a few years later. “I got a yard on [Guido] Buchwald and just got in front of him, I knew I needed to get my body in front of him so the worst that could happen was we got a penalty. But the ball bounced up and I had to adjust my body, but luckily it went into the bottom corner. After that Germany pressed and were the Germany we knew from the World Cup. I got the goal and get the glory, but Neville Southall deserves a lot of credit, he made a couple of magical saves. It was an incredible night, to beat the world champions was something really, really special.”
“We've worked hard for this and it's a famous victory,” said Yorath in his post-match interview with Bob Humphries of BBC Wales. “I'm delighted. We didn't play that attacking but against the Germans I don't think you can. We played to contain them and hit them on the break, and I'm delighted for the players. I've got to give credit to all the players they played very well. It's a great day for Wales.” But there was more to come from Yorath's Cymru, and in their next game in September a goal from Saunders earned a memorable 1-0 win over the mighty Brazil in Cardiff.