6 July 2014

ON THIS DAY: Poland beats Brazil for 3rd in 1974

In this July 6, 1974 file photo, Deyna of Poland, left, heads the ball, while Brazil's Marinho challenges. Poland's Grzegorz Lato looks on, at right, during third place play-off in Munich, West Germany. On this day: Poland beats Brazil 1-0 to claim third place in the 1974 World Cup with Lato scoring the only goal, taking his tournament tally to 7.
On July 6 in World Cup history: Grzegorz Lato claims "Golden Boot" as Poland beats Brazil to claim third in Munich in 1974. 

The 1974 World Cup was memorable for the emergence of the Netherlands. It was also the tournament that put Poland on the football map. After five straight wins, including against Argentina and Italy, Poland was one game away from making the final. However, a 1-0 loss to host West Germany meant it contested a match for third place against defending champion Brazil. For many teams, notably those that consistently challenge for the title, the third-place match is a chore. For others, it can be a realistic limit to their ambitions. In 1974, Poland defeated Brazil 1-0 through a late winner by Lato to claim third. Lato's goal took his tournament tally to seven, enough for him to win the coveted "Golden Boot." Poland came third again in 1982.