With the German national team due to face Peru in the first of their friendlies in this spring break, we cast our minds back to the first-ever meeting of the two nations at the 1970 World Cup held in Mexico. Drawn together in the group stage, both sides went into the clash in Leon looking to top the group.
Having been draw alongside Bulgaria and Morocco in Group 4 it was a question as to who would finish top of the group between 1966 beaten finalists Germany and a Peru side competing at the first World Cup since the inaugural edition in 1930.
The South Americans international record was nothing to shout about, but the 1970 vintage had some very exciting players coached by legendary Brazilian Didi, who had introduced some samba flair into their game. The squad however were affected mentally going into the tournament due to the huge earthquake that had struck their homeland just two days before their opening game with Bulgaria.
The South Americans came back from 2-0 down to beat the Bulgarians before beating Morocco 3-0. Germany opened their tournament with a 2-1 win over the North Africans before a Gerd Müller hattrick help dispatch Bulgaria in a 5-2 win.
Winner takes all
With four points apiece the winners knew they would face England in the quarter finals whereas the losers would be pitted against Brazil. With the Mexican crowd firmly behind Peru the two sides kicked off at the Guanajuato Stadium and attacked each other from the off.
All goals were to fall in the first half in a 25-minute period with another Gerd Müller hattrick proving decisive. Nicolás Fuentes spurned the first chance for Peru before the Bayern Munich striker opened the scoring in the 19th minute. A right wing cross from Reinhard ‘Stan’ Libuda was chested down inside the box before being prodded under the advancing keeper Luis Rubinos.
The lead was doubled on 26 minutes when left winger Hannes Löhr danced past Pedro Gonzalez before picking out Müller precisely and the striker made no mistake with the left-foot finish.
The perfect hattrick was completed in the 39th minute when ‘der Bomber’ got his onto a Uwe Seeler cross even though it seemed to high to reach. He rose majestically to head back across goal and give Germany a 3-0 lead. Peru did manage to pull one back just before half-time when Teófilo Cubillas saw his free-kick from the edge of the box deflected past a helpless Sepp Maier.
There were no further goals in the second 45 minutes although with the Germans clearly tiring, they had to rely upon keeper Maier to keep the Peruvians to just one goal.
Germany: Maier, Vogts, Schnellinger, Fichtel, Höttges (Patzke 46), Beckenbauer, Overath, Libuda (Grabowski 75), Seeler, Müller, Löhr
Peru: Rubinos, Gonzalez, de la Torre, Chumpitaz, Fuentes, Mifflin, Challe (Cruzado 72), Sotil, Leon (Ramirez 56), Gallardo, Cubuillas
1-0 Müller (19)
2-0 Müller (26)
3-0 Müller (39)
3-1 Cubillas (44)
Onwards and upwards
Germany duly faced rivals England in the quarter final in a repeat of the 1966 final. Revenge was had for the Wembley defeat with a famous 3-2 win over Alf Ramsay’s world champions after extra-time. Peru for their part lost 4-2 to Brazil in what was an unhappy reunion for coach Didi. Germany were however to be denied a second successive World Cup final appearance losing to 4-3 to Italy in a match now dubbed one of the finest football matches of all-time.