West Germany, runners up in 1982 and 1986, had blown away Yugoslavia and United Arab Emirates in their opening two matches. They were already through to the second round and firmly installed as one of the favourites to win the World Cup.
Meanwhile, Colombia were competing in their first World Cup in twenty-eight years.
During the late eighties, Colombian football had become a major player in South American football for the first time in decades. After beating UAE in their opening match, Colombia just had to take a point from their remaining two matches to qualify for the knockout stages.
They lost to a very talented Yugoslavia side in Bologna and that meant they had to get something against the formidable West Germans in Milan.
Seemingly dead and buried after Pierre Littbarski’s superb strike in the 88th minute, Colombia sprang to life…
What Happened Next
Colombia lost to Cameroon in extra time in their second round match which included a terrible error from flamboyant goalkeeper René Higuita.
This campaign did, however, see the emergence of their golden generation with notable talents such as Rincón, Andres Escobar and Valderrama going on to record a famous 5-0 win in Buenos Aires against Argentina to qualify for USA ’94.
West Germany, of course, went onto win the tournament that year.
- Freddy Rincón’s middle name is Eusebio.
- Gol de Rincon (Colombian commentary)
- West Germany and Colombia shirts from the 1990 World Cup are set for re-release this year, alongside their Italia ’90 inspired 2018 strips.