WORLD CUP : History—1958

1958 was the year Brazil, so unfortunate in 1950, finally captured the world title they had been threatening to win for so long.

In their first round match against the Soviet Union, the South Americans introduced two new players, a bandy-legged little winger called Manuel Fransisco Dos Santos, known as Garrincha, and a 17-year-old called Edson Arantes do Nascimento, or more simply, Pele.

Nothing could stand in Brazil’s way. Wales did well to limit them to a 1-0 quarter-final win.

France boasted a star striker of their own in Just Fontaine, but they were swept aside 6-3 in the semi-finals as Pele fired in a hat-trick.

Sweden rode the support of the home fans into the final by beating holders West Germany. But in the final they too were undone by the boys from Brazil, Pele and Vava grabbing two each in a 5-2 demolition job.

At the end of the match, the Swedish crowd rose to salute the Brazilians, and in particular their young prodigy Pele.