Two years after suffering the biggest earthquake of the 20th Century, Chile staged the 1962 World Cup with four host cities: the capital Santiago, charming Viña del Mara, Racangua, and Arica.
The National Stadium in Santiago was quite a picture, with the snow-covered mountains of the Andes in the background setting the scene. Brazil went to Chile as the reigning World Cup champions.
1962 FIFA World Cup Facts
Date: 30 May – 17 June 1962
1962 World Cup Final: Brazil – Czechoslovakia 3-1
3rd place: Chile – Yugoslavia 1-0
Host cities: 4
Matches played: 32
Top scorers: Garrincha (Brazil), Vavá (Brazil), Leonel Sánchez (Chile), Dražan Jerković (Yugoslavia), Flórián Albert (Hungary), Valentin Ivanov (Soviet Union) (4 goals)
World Cup 1962 Background
Both the 1954 and 1958 World Cups were held in Europe. According to the South American countries, it was about time for a World Cup to be hosted again in South America.
The CONMEBOL (South American) Federations were serious about this. They threatened to boycott the 1962 World Cup if FIFA chose a European country again.
This boycott would not be the first time since the 1938 World Cup experienced similar issues. Three countries showed interest in hosting the 7th World Cup: West Germany, Argentina, and Chile.
West Germany withdrew before the vote as requested by FIFA to ensure the 1962 FIFA World Cup would be held in South America. This meant the voting process was between Argentina and Chile.
Argentina showed lots of confidence regarding its infrastructure and was the favorite initially. However, president of the Chilean football federation Carlos Dittborn ultimately convinced several football associations about their ability to organize a World Cup successfully.
Chile received 32 votes, and Argentina a total of 11 votes. So on 10 June 1956, in Lisbon, it was officially announced Chile gained more votes than Argentina. Therefore Chile became the 1962 World Cup host country. No boycott took place.
On 22 May 1960, the devastating Valdivia earthquake occurred in Chile, the most powerful earthquake ever.
Stadiums and infrastructure were severely damaged, but the Chilean football federation’s president, Carlos Dittborn, kept showing confidence and pleaded to FIFA to support the 1962 FIFA World Cup in Chile.
In 1956, during the 30th FIFA congress, he spoke the famous words: Porque nada tenemos, lo haremos todo (Because we have nothing, we will do everything).
These words became an unofficial slogan of the 1962 World Cup, which started to have a different meaning after the earthquake.
1 of the 1962 World Cup stadiums was named after him. Unfortunately, he passed away one month and two days before the World Cup started.
1962 World Cup Participants
Fifty-six teams entered the qualification rounds to be 1 of the 14 teams to play in the 1962 FIFA World Cup.
Sixteen countries participated in total. Chile automatically qualified since they were hosting the 1962 World Cup and Brazil qualified automatically since they won the previous World Cup in 1958.
Eight European places were allocated to the following countries: European Champions USSR, West Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, England, and Bulgaria, which qualified for the first time.
Three places for South America, excluding Chile and Brazil, were allocated to the following countries: Uruguay, Argentina, and Colombia, which qualified for the first time.
Three intercontinental play-offs had to be played by six countries that didn’t qualify directly:
- UEFA country Spain against CAF country Morocco
- UEFA country Yugoslavia against AFC country South Korea
- CONMEBOL country Mexico against CONCACAF country Paraguay
Both UEFA countries Spain and Yugoslavia and CONCACAF country Mexico won these play-offs and therefore qualified last minute for the 1962 World Cup.
Due to Mexico’s win, a CONCACAF country also participated in the 1962 World Cup.
For the 2nd time in a row, no African or Asian countries qualified. The 1962 FIFA tournament was the last one in which only European countries and the Americas qualified.
World Cup 1962 Groups
Not much has changed when it comes to the group format. The 1958 format, which introduced a new standard, was used with only some tiny modifications.
There are four groups, with each group containing four teams. The top 2 teams would advance to the Quarter Finals.
The point system didn’t change; 2 points were rewarded for a win and 1 point for a draw. The goal average, introduced in the 1958 World Cup, was again implemented but slightly changed.
Unlike the 1958 World Cup, the goal average was used for teams with equal points in the group phase.
This means no play-offs were played by teams occupying the 2nd place in a group anymore. Instead, if necessary, the average goal rule would decide every team’s group position.
From the Quarter Finals on, the knockout phase, there would be 30 minutes of extra time when the match ends in a draw.
Lots will be drawn if the match is still a draw after 30 minutes.
The number 1 qualified teams of the groups played against the number 2 teams of other groups in the Quarter Finals, as introduced in the 1958 World Cup.
The World Cup Final had a different rule. The match had to be replayed if the game ended in a draw after the extra 30 minutes of playtime.
During the 1962 World Cup, no lots needed to be drawn, and the Final was not replayed.
But, once the goal average had to be used to determine which country would advance to the next round.
|Group 1||Group 2||Group 3||Group 4|
|Soviet Union||West Germany||Brazil||Hungary|
This was in group 4 between England and Argentina. England obtained a higher goal average and therefore advanced to the Quarter Finals. For Argentina, the World Cup was over.
The four seed countries were defending champions Brazil, England, Italy, and Uruguay. They were kept apart from each other and were placed in different groups.
FIFA, by the way, started to name the first-round groups as ‘groups’ and not as ‘pools.’ This name change was implemented during the 1962 World Cup.
The groups were as follows:
World Cup 1962 Stadiums
It was not planned to use only four host cities and four stadiums.
The plan was host country Chile was to use eight stadiums. Santiago, Viña del Mar, Rancagua and Arica eventually hosted World Cup matches.
But the original plan was to use the cities Talca, Concepción, Talcahuano, and Valdivia as well.
Unfortunately, the Valdivia earthquake on 22 May 1960 was the most powerful earthquake ever.
More than 2 million people were affected, and cities such as Talca, Concepción, Talcahuano, and Valdivia were severely damaged.
Therefore the four cities were canceled as host cities, and the 1962 World Cup calendar had to be changed entirely.
The infrastructure and stadiums were rebuilt at record speed, and the 1962 FIFA World Cup could start as planned without delays.
The following four cities and four stadiums were used in Chile:
Status: Chile’s national stadium was renovated in 2010 and was the World Cup venue for 1962 final.
Location: Viña del Mar
Status: It still exists and is a multi-purpose stadium
Estadio Braden Copper Co.
Status: Goes by the name Estadio El Teniente and is currently being renovated
Estadio Carlos Dittborn
Status: It still exists and is a multi-purpose stadium
World Cup 1962 Memorable Matches
Group 1 Soviet Union – Colombia 4-4
Estadio Carlos Dittborn, Arica – Attendance: 8,040
An exciting match this was, although Colombia didn’t reach the 2nd round.
In 11 minutes, three goals were scored by the Soviet Union. 2 goals by Valentin Ivanov and 1 goal by Igor Chislenko. Colombian Germán Aceros changed the score to 3-1 in the first half.
Eleven minutes after the 2nd half, Viktor Ponedelnik scored the 4th goal for the Soviet Union.
With only 35 minutes to go, it seemed pretty obvious Colombia was beaten! But they proved otherwise. In 20 minutes, Colombia managed to change the score to 4-4!
Marcos Coll, Antonio Rada, and Marino Klinger were responsible for the goals. However, the goal of Marcos Coll became infamous because of 2 factors!
First, it was an Olympic Goal (a direct goal from a corner)! This was the first, and last time so far this has happened in World Cup history.
2nd of all, the ball passed legendary goalkeeper Lev Yashin! The Soviet Union managed to top the group and advanced together with Yugoslavia.
Group 2 West Germany – Italy 0-0
Estadio Nacional, Santiago – Attendance: 65,440
This was the first time both countries encountered each other in a World Cup.
This match showed this typical defensive style many teams were using in this tournament. In addition, both teams were using the famous catenaccio defensive system.
This system is designed to prevent goals from being scored and scored by only using counterattacks, suddenly changing defense to attack mode. As a result, no team scored any goal.
Chile – Italy 2-0 (Battle of Santiago)
Estadio Nacional, Santiago – Attendance: 66,057
The group match between Chile against Italy was one of the worst World Cup matches ever.
Not because of the result, but because of the way both teams played against each other.
The reason seemed to be 2 Italian journalists who wrote negative articles about Chile. The match was violent and aggressive, with players (high) kicking and punching one another.
This infamous match has the infamous name Battle of Santiago. One of many disgraceful actions was Chilean forward Leonel Sánchez breaking the nose of Italian forward Humberto Maschio behind the referee’s back.
This resulted in a high kick by Mario David aiming for Leonel Sánchez’s head. Two Italian players, Mario David and Giorgio Ferrini were sent off.
However, this amount could have easily been more. Chile was able to score two times in the last 20 minutes of the match.
The first goal was scored by Jaime Ramírez and the 2nd by Jorge Toro. At the end of the match, both teams had to leave the pitch under police protection. As a result, Italy was eliminated, and Chile advanced with West Germany.
Brazil – Czechoslovakia 0-0
Estadio Sausalito, Viña del Mar – Attendance: 14,903
No goals were scored in Brazil’s 2nd group match. Nevertheless, both countries did advance to the next round.
This match turned out to be Pelé’s final match of the 1962 World Cup. Pelé started the World Cup well by scoring 1 of the goals in the first match against Mexico.
But in this match, he suffered a torn thigh muscle. As a result, Pelé had to be replaced by Amarildo who showed excellent skills in the tournament.
But it was the fantastic dribbling skills of Garrincha which became memorable.
With many quality players, Brazil managed to win the World Cup without Pelé.
Group 4 England – Argentina 3-1
Estadio El Teniente, Rancagua – Attendance: 7,134
The first time both countries encountered one another was in this match.
However, their famous rivalry would only start in the next World Cup. England won this match with three goals scored by Ron Flowers, Bobby Charlton, and Jimmy Greaves.
Argentinian José Sanfilippo scored Argentina’s only goal 9 minutes before the final whistle. But the group ended with Argentina and England having equal points! Both had 3 points.
For the first and only time in World Cup history, the average goal rule had to determine which country would advance to the next round.
Using this rule, England joined Hungary in the next round. England scored two more goals in total in the group phase than Argentina, who was eliminated.
Soviet Union – Chile 1-2 (Quarter Finals)
Estadio Carlos Dittborn, Arica – Attendance: 17,268
It was not expected, but it happened. Host nation Chile was able to defeat the great Soviet Union.
Leonel Sánchez scored the first goal of the match after 11 minutes. Igor Chislenko scored the equalizer for the Soviet Union a few minutes later.
But Chilean player Eladio Rojas scored the final goal of the match. Rojas was so excited when scoring against the Soviet Union; he hugged the ‘unbeatable’ goalkeeper Lev Yashin first before his teammates!
Brazil – England 3-1 (Quarter Finals)
Estadio Sausalito, Viña del Mar – Attendance: 17,736
With Pelé being injured, Garrincha, nicknamed Little bird, showed an outstanding performance in this World Cup.
This includes this match against England, where he scored two goals resulting in the 3-1 end score. Gerry Hitchens scored for England, and Vavá scored for Brazil as well.
England lost 3-1, the same end score as the group match against Argentina. However, in this match, something pretty unique happened.
During the quarter final, a dog invaded the pitch for a few minutes! English striker Jimmy Greaves eventually caught him. The dog did urinate on his jersey, though!
Chile – Brazil 2-4 (A South American Semi Final)
Estadio Nacional, Santiago – Attendance: 76,500
Chile was full of confidence, especially after eliminating the Soviet Union. But Brazil ended Chile’s 1962 World Cup adventure. Both Mane Garrincha and Vavá scored two goals.
A goal by Jorge Toro and a penalty scored by Leonel Sánchez resulted in the 2-4 score.
Both Garrincha and Sánchez scored their last World Cup goal in this match and became 2 of the 1962 FIFA World Cup top scorers with four goals.
In this match, an important player was sent off. It was Brazilian Mane Garrincha. Usually, he would have missed the 1962 World Cup final.
But the Brazilian Football Association succeeded in getting his ban overturned by FIFA.
Chile ended the tournament with their heads up by beating Yugoslavia 1-0 in the match for third place. Brazil advanced to the Final for the 3rd time, with Garrincha.
Yugoslavia – Czechoslovakia 1-3 (Semi Finals)
Estadio Sausalito, Viña del Mar – Attendance: 5,890
Two countries against each other today do not exist anymore. They encountered each other for the first and last time in World Cup history.
Czechoslovakia won this semi finals match due to 2 goals scored by striker Adolf Scherer in the last 10 minutes of the game.
His 2nd goal was a penalty. Josef Kadraba scored the first goal for Czechoslovakia, and Dražan Jerković the only goal for Yugoslavia.
Czechoslovakia entered the Final for the very last time. Yugoslav Jerković became one of the 1962 World Cup top scorers with four goals.
1962 World Cup Final
Brazil and Czechoslovakia encountered each other in the Final. Brazil played two World Cup finals in 1950 and 1958, and Czechoslovakia played only 1 Final in 1934.
Both countries were placed in the same group and therefore have played against each other in a group match before the Final.
The score, however, ended in 0-0. Brazil won all the other matches. Czechoslovakia lost 1 group match against Mexico with a 3-1 score.
Both countries encountered each other before in the 1938 World Cup. In that tournament, they placed against each other twice as well. The first match ended in a draw and the rematch in a win for defending champions Brazil.
On 17 June, In Santiago, in Estadio Nacional, with 68,679 attendees, the Final was held between the 2 group members.
The Final missed Brazilian star player Pelé playing his 2nd World Cup.
He became injured during the 2nd group match and was replaced by Brazilian player Amarildo who also played in the World Cup Final.
Like in the 1958 World Cup Final, Brazil’s opponent made the first goal. However, in this Final, it was Czechoslovakian player Josef Masopust who scored the first goal after 15 minutes in the first half of the match.
But again, like in 1958, the goal woke up the Brazilian team, and 2 minutes later, in the 17th minute, the score changed to 1-1.
The goal scorer was Amarildo, and the ball entered the goal due to a mistake by Czechoslovakian keeper Viliam Schrojf.
In the 2nd half, Brazil was adequately warmed up and scored their 2nd goal (69′) by player Zito.
It didn’t take much time for the 3rd and final goal to be scored. This time, player Vavá (78′) became the goal scorer, whereas keeper Viliam Schrojf made another error.
Due to this goal, Vavá became 1 of the many top scorers of the 1962 World Cup. He also became the first player to have scored in 2 World Cup Finals (1958,1962).
The score ended in 3-1, and Brazil was a two-time World Cup champion. Brazil joined Uruguay and Italy as the best World Cup teams who had won two World Cup Finals.
It wouldn’t take that long before Brazil surpasses both countries.
Massive Blow In 1962 World Cup
After conquering the world in 1958, at 21 years of age, Pelé arrived in Chile, already carrying the status of football genius.
However, after picking up an injury in the second match, he had to be sidelined, making Brazil look for other alternatives.
Nevertheless, Brazil had two trump cards up their sleeve, leading them to their second title: the unpredictable Mane Garrincha. He would earn himself the nickname of the Possessed, standing in for Pelé.
Garrincha was a monster on the pitch in Chile at twenty-five years of age and at the height of his career. Indeed, the 1962 World Cup would later be recognized as the best moment of the player known as the Angel with Twisted Legs.
He scored four goals in the 1962 World Cup finals tournament and was described by the French newspaper L’Equipe as ‘the most extraordinary right winger football has ever known.
New Brazil Coach
Brazil’s squad in Chile featured several players who had won the 1958 World Cup, albeit under the guidance of a new manager: coach Aymoré Moreira, who took over after Vicente Feola stood down due to health problems.
Brother of Zezé Moreira, the man in charge of Brazil in Switzerland in 1954, Aymoré adopted a 4-3-3 formation. In the first match, 2-0 victory over Mexico, with Zagallo and Pelé scoring.
But against Czechoslovakia, Pelé left the pitch with an injury to his left thigh. Then, Brazil had a hard match against Spain, who had Puskas amidst their ranks after the Hungarian had become a naturalized Spanish citizen.
Spain took the lead with Adelardo Rodriguez, but Pelé’s substitute would save the day. Amarildo scored twice and made sure Brazil beat Spain 2-1.
In the 1962 World Cup quarter-final, they faced England. It was quite an eventful match, and there was a moment when a dog invaded the pitch, but at the end of the day, Mane Garrincha was the one who shined the most.
He opened the score, took the free-kick that led to Brazil’s second, scored by Vavá, and took his tally to two with a cracker from outside the box. 3-1 Brazil.
In the semi final, the hosts had 80 thousand voices chanting in their favor, but the Chileans were forced to watch another of Garrincha’s outstanding performances.
He scored twice and helped Brazil win by 4-2. Vavá scored the other two Brazilian goals. Chile would have to content themselves with third place.
1962 World Cup Winner
In the 1962 World Cup final, they faced Czechoslovakia again. Guided by Rudolf Vytlacil, they had drawn with Brazil in the first group stage but were not favorites.
Nevertheless, the Czechs took the lead with Josef Masopust, the midfielder who would win the Golden Ball prize, awarded by the France Football magazine at the end of that year.
However, their lead was short-lived. Two minutes later, Amarildo beat goalkeeper Schroif at his near post.
In the second half, Amarildo crossed, and Zito headed it in, putting the Brazilians in front.
After a cross, Schroif made a mistake, and Vavá sealed off Brazil’s 3-1 World Cup title. The world was yellow and green once more after the 1962 World Cup.
El Rock del Mundial Song
There is no more World Cup without an anthem from this tournament, excluding Mexico 1970.
Starting with the 1962 World Cup in Chile, the anthem is in Spanish and is named El Rock del Mundial (The World Cup Rock).
The song is sung by Los Ramblers, who expected at least one gooooaaaaaal de Chile during the World Cup.
The song became a hit in South America, with over 2 million copies sold. After more than 60 years, Los Ramblers are still performing.
1962 Tournament Records
- Two countries qualified for the first time: Colombia and Bulgaria.
- First World Cup so far where the goal average had to be used to determine who would continue to the next round, Argentina was eliminated, and England advanced to the next round.
- Only tournament where there are 6 top scorers.
- Only World Cup where the top scorers have ‘only’ scored four goals.
- First edition where the average goal rule is for any team in the group phase, eliminating the possibility of playing any play-offs.
- 3rd World Cup, where no extra-time matches have been played.
- Czechoslovakian player Vaclav Masek scored the fastest goal (15 seconds against Mexico), a record that was beaten in the 2002 World Cup.
- Brazil is the 3rd country to have won a Jules Rimet trophy 2 times.
- Brazil is the 2nd and last country so far to have won two consecutive World Cups.
- Brazilian forward Vavá is the first player to have scored a goal in 2 World Cup Finals (1958, 1962).
- Brazilian goalkeeper Gilmar is the first and only goalkeeper so far to have won 2 consecutive World Cups in the starting position.
- The South American team Colombia scored an Olympic Goal (direct goal from a corner) against the Soviet Union, which is the first and last time so far this has happened in World Cup history.
- This World Cup has the lowest goal average per match: 2.78, due to the defensive playing system Catenaccio.
- Brazilian winger Mane Garrincha is the first player to have won the Golden Boot, Golden Ball, and the tournament (after the Golden Ball was retrospectively awarded)
First edition to introduce a World Cup song.
- Mexico finally won their first match (against Czechoslovakia) after having played a record of 13 matches without having won once from 1930 till 1962.
Did You Know
- This Chile World Cup is known for the defensive playing style Catenaccio teams adopted (mainly West Germany and Italy), which was used not to win matches but to avoid losing them. Goals were scored on the counterattack with a quick change from defense into attack.
- First edition where groups are referred to as groups and not as pools.
- This World Cup is known for the high level of aggressiveness in several matches.
- This tournament is generally considered as 1 of the more disappointing tournaments due to the low amount of goals, defensive play, and psychical brutality in specific matches
- This was the last World Cup not to be televised live in Europe, which changed due to the arrival of the Telstar satellite.
- Last tournament that only contained European and American participants.
- Forward José Altafini playing for Italy, participated in the 1958 World Cup for the Brazilian team, meaning if he hadn’t switched to the Italian team for this World Cup, he would have won his 2nd World Championship medal.
- Brazilian trainer Aymoré Moreira is the brother of Zezé Moreira, the coach of the Brazilian team in the 1954 World Cup. They are the only brothers who have coached the same country in a tournament.
- Spanish player Alfredo di Stefano pulled a muscle just before the 1962 World Cup.
- Last competition, where players were allowed to join national teams while having played in different national teams in previous World Cups.
- Chilean players had a fascinating strategy before each match. Some say they ate chocolate (or cheese) before playing against Switzerland, spaghetti before playing against Italy, and drank vodka before playing against the Soviet Union and Brazilian coffee before playing against defending champions Brazil.
- The crack match ball was made by local supplier Zamora by host nation Chile.
- The crack match ball is the first and last World Cup match ball model to use octagon panels instead of the 18 panels usually used at that time.
- The crack match ball was not a success. The ball absorbed lots of water, lost its color in the sun, and wasn’t meeting European standards, resulting in the use of several European balls for the World Cup matches.
World Cup 1962 FIFA Awards
Golden Ball: Garrincha (Brazil)
Silver Ball: Josef Masopust (Czechoslovakia)
Bronze Ball: Leonel Sánchez (Chile)
Golden Boot: Mane Garrincha (Brazil), Vavá (Brazil), Leonel Sánchez (Chile), Dražan Jerković (Yugoslavia), Flórián Albert (Hungary), Valentin Ivanov (Soviet Union) (4 goals)
Silver Boot: Amarildo (Brazil), Lajos Tichy (Hungary), Milan Galić (Yugoslavia), Adolf Scherer (Czechoslovakia) (3 goals)
Bronze Boot: Giacomo Bulgarelli (Italy), Igor Chislenko (Soviet Union), José Sasía (Uruguay), Viktor Ponedelnik (Soviet Union), Uwe Seeler (West Germany), Ron Flowers (England), Jorge Toro (Chile), Jaime Ramírez (Chile), Eladio Rojas (Chile) (2 goals)
Best Young Player Award: Flórián Albert (20 years) (Hungary)
1962 FIFA All-Star Team
This is the first and last time the Soviet Union is included in an All-Star Team. It is Russian Valeriy Voronin who will forever be the only Soviet Union player listed in an All-Star Team.
Chile was, for the first time, included. For Brazilian player Djalma Santos this is the 3rd and last time he has been included, and for his teammate Mane Garrincha it is the 2nd time to be included in an All-Star Team. For Czechoslovakia, it is the last and final time to be included in a FIFA All-Star Team.
- Viliam Schrojf (Czechoslovakia)
- Djalma Santos (Brazil)
- Cesare Maldini (Italy)
- Valeriy Voronin (Soviet Union)
- Karl-Heinz Schnellinger (West Germany)
- Zagallo (Brazil)
- Zito (Brazil)
- Josef Masopust (Czechoslovakia)
- Vavá (Brazil)
- Mane Garrincha (Brazil)
- Leonel Sánchez (Chile)
Rhett is an Australian-born, globe trotter who is a UEFA ‘A’ Licence Soccer Coach. With his family, he has traveled and coached soccer in more than 30 countries, while attending World Cups, European Championships, and some of the biggest local derbies in the world!