Twenty decisive seconds marked the defeat of Iron Curtain. Munich’s iconic Olympic Stadium was the venue for the Euro 1988 final, and it was here that the 57th minute witnessed the final great milestone of the Soviet Union.
THE FINAL MILESTONE
As the score was 2-0 with Marco van Basten’s second magnificent goal – a shot that made goalkeeper Rinat Dasayev stun like a boxer who could not take a punch – then the opportunity came just three minutes later. Valeriy Lobanovskyi’s boys spilled over in Igor Belanov’s inferiority with shots towards the opponent’s goal. But just 20 seconds later, Hans van Breukelen fouled Sergey Gotsmanov near the edge. It was an unnecessary foul from the Dutch goalkeeper, and his teammates quickly expressed unhappy attitude.
Belanov was once again given the chance to bring the Soviet Union back to the game, returning to the Euro 88 finals. He shot right-footed, admitting it was a good shot, But van Breukelen’s save or no less. An excellent save, stop the fairness and deny the tension that audiences around the world are watching, an unexpected end to the game in particular and the tournament in general.
The match ended 2-0, the Netherlands finally got a title after a long time waiting for the glory and the Soviet Union seemed to be only lamentable because of fate turned away.
Euro 1988 finals
Oleg Kuznetsov was suspended before the final, with Volodymyr Bezsonov sidelined for a win against Azeglio Vicini. Half the Soviet defense had to re-arrange for the final game. Sergei Aleinikov was asked from the midfield to back down into the hole of the defense. It was Aleinikov who left Ruud Gullit free in the box and headed in the open.
With a thigh injury that prevented Belanov from appearing in the semi-final against Italy, Oleg Protasov also faced the question of fitness. Adding to the absence of Kuznetsov and Bezsonov, especially with the loss of Kuznetsov – who completely controlled Gianluca Vialli in the semi-final – was a blow. The Soviets entered the match at the Olympic Stadium with obvious disadvantage.
The loss of Ivan Yaremchuk just before the match was due to a broken leg with Lobanovskyi’s own problems raised the concerns of the Soviet Union at the time they appeared at the Olympic Stadium against a Dutchman. Full of strength.
However, three days before that match, the Soviet Union had beaten Holland 1-0 in the opening match in Cologne. Despite losing important factors, the Soviet Union and Lobanovskyi still kicked better than the Netherlands and Michels on their way to the final game.