History: Van Basten sparks Dutch joy: 1988
After bowing out of the tournament in agonising circumstances in 1984, West Germany expected far greater things when they finally got their chance to stage the Euro Championship for the first time in 1988. The real stars in the Dutch team were the AC Milan trio of Frank Rijkaard, Ruud Gullit and Marco van Basten. Merely a substitute for their opening 1-0 loss to the USSR, Van Basten plundered a hat-trick in the 3-1 success over England.
The Dutch overcame their German neighbours for the first time in 32 years. Ronald Koeman levelled from the spot and Van Basten converted a late chance to earn another crack at the USSR.
With dreadlocks flailing about him, Gullit headed in the opener before an absolute masterpiece
sealed the result. Meeting Arnold Muhren’s looping crossfield ball in a seemingly impossible position on the right, Van Basten crashed an acrobatic volley over goalkeeper Rinat Dasaev and just inside the far post.