Team Selection: 1954 World Cup

Discussion in 'FIFA and Tournaments' started by Gregoriak, Nov 19, 2004.

  1. Gregoriak

    Gregoriak BigSoccer Supporter

    Feb 27, 2002
    Well, for this tournament, I had to make use of some old "best of" teams compiled in old football magazines right after the 1954 tournament. Four renown football experts each compiled their own selection for Germany`s "Kicker" football magazine. They were Dr. Friedebert Becker, Dr. Willy Meisl, Dr. Paul Tröger and Dr. Fritz Weilenmann. From their selections, Kicker compiled the "definitive" World selection 1954.

    I will first present each single selection made by these gentlemen and finish with the "1954 World XI". For each position in the classic WM-System, at least two players were chosen by each expert.

    I will begin with Dr. Friedebert Becker`s selection. The others will follow.

    Dr. Friedebert Becker`s Teams:

    Team A:






    Team B:






    His commentary:
    "The best players were the connectors (!). The two Hungarians Puskas and Kocsis, the Uruguayan Schiaffino and our own Fritz Walter can only be chosen according to the alphabet, for who would want to favour any of them? Even Maxl Morlock is approaching these world class players, in terms of shooting security, he can take on even goal champion Kocsis! Wings didn`t shine as brightly as they did in 1934 (Lehner, Orsi, Puc, Guaita), but Schäfer and the Bernie Klodt of the Turkey match can be compared with any of the Greats from Overseas or central Europe. But the best winger of this tournament was without a doubt the Brazilian Julinho."
  2. Gregoriak

    Gregoriak BigSoccer Supporter

    Feb 27, 2002
    Dr. Willy Meisl`s Teams:

    Team A:






    Team B:




    ------no player named-------Lorant------------Lantos


    His commentary:
    "The best player? This is an unanswerable question. One could at the highest try to classify groups of players. But if I have to answer: number 1 was the bearer of a name of a player who already once before overshadowed every other player at a World Cup: Andrade is the complete footballer, a real 'black diamond'. Technically completed, an athlete and sportsman from head to toe, tactically, a football pitch-marshall. He is equally perfect at passing and taking balls, in destruction as in built-up."
  3. lanman

    lanman BigSoccer Supporter

    Aug 30, 2002
    Have you got the other teams?

    Willy Meisl is obviously selecting teams on nominal positions only - Schiaffino, Walter and Hidjekuti all tended to play quite deep (Hidjekuti was virtually a midfielder in Hungary's formation) so that team would be fairly lightweight up front. How anyone can leave Kocsis out of the first XI is beyond me - 11 goals in five games including the two extra time strikes that saw off Uruguay and two in the quarter final against Brazil.
  4. Gregoriak

    Gregoriak BigSoccer Supporter

    Feb 27, 2002
    They will be posted shortly!

    In defense of Willy Meisl, I have to point out that they didn`t use tactical schemes, they just listed the positions and ranked the players in the order they preferred them (or sometimes alphabetically).

    Meisl`s complete selection looked like this:

    Goalie: Grosics, Parlier
    Full Backs: 1. D.Santos, 2. Neury, 3. Lantos
    Halves: 1. Andrade, 2. Cajkovski, Ocwirk, Bozsik, Eckel
    Stopper: 1. Wright, 2. Lorant
    Outside Right: 1. Julinho, 2. Matthews, 3. Abbadie
    Outside Left: 1. Czibor, 2. Schäfer
    Inside halves/connectors: Schiaffino, F. Walter, Kocsis (doesn`t list Puskas because he missed two important games)
    Centre Forwards: 1. Hidegkuti, 2. Fritz Walter, 3. Stojaspal
    Referees: Griffiths, Orlandini.

    So based on that information, I had to put Hidegkuti in the centre forward position, as he was Meisl`s first choice. Of course it is well known that Hidegkuti was the first of a long number of withdrawn centre forwards, who were more playmakers than tanks, so you`re right, this is just the nominal tactical scheme, not a factual one (which would be hard to do due to the constant moving process of the players on the pitch). I rather prefer sticking to the nominal scheme to avoid too much confusion, for people that care for football history (like you, for example) are usually aware that Hidegkuti played withdrawn.
  5. Gregoriak

    Gregoriak BigSoccer Supporter

    Feb 27, 2002
    Dr. Paul Tröger`s Teams:

    Team A

    ---Schäfer-----Hidegkuti------Budai II





    He didn`t list enough players for a second team. The players he listed additionally were: Grosics (goalie), Horvath (stopper), Eckel (half), Schiaffino (inside connector), Hügi (centre forward).

    His commentary:
    "Kocsis' inimitable way of scoring headers was the most impressive thing for me. He was the most dangerous forward of the tournament (Morlock was close in terms of jumping power as well as in the exactness of his heading). Uruguay`s Schiaffino (even if Milan just paid 300,000 Marks to Penarol) does not just reach him (maybe because he`s missing the accompanying players). Best strategic: Fritz Walter, who literally hypnotized his accompanying players, to act according to his ideas. Best performance in terms of defence: Liebrich in Geneva and Basel (despite Uruguay`s giant Santamaria, despite the self-sacrificing Neury). No goalie was outstanding. Decisive however were: Turek against Yugoslavia in the positive, Merrick (England vs. Uruguay) in the negative."
  6. comme

    comme Moderator
    Staff Member

    Feb 21, 2003
    You are a goldmine of information Gregoriak.

    I still haven't posted my teamfor some of the more recnt tournamnets yet. I must try and do that.
  7. Gregoriak

    Gregoriak BigSoccer Supporter

    Feb 27, 2002
    Dr. Fritz Weilenmann`s Teams are a bit too complicated to put into a tactical scheme. I will just quote what he said about his selections plus the general comment.

    Goal: Beara, Turgay, Turek
    Full Backs pair: Crnkovic-Stankovic
    Left Full Back: Kohlmeyer
    Right Full Back: Neury (he remarks that he unfortunately didn`t see D.Santos play)
    Stopper: Liebrich, closely ahead of Horvath (he remarks that he didn`t see Wright play)
    Halves pair: three almost equal pairs, Bozsik-Zakarias, Ocwirk-Koller & Cajkovski-Boskov.
    Single half: Eckel (he remarks that Uruguay`s Andrade does not exactly belong into this position, but he wants to call him "the king of the classical outside-marking half runners")
    Outside Right: Julinho, Milutinovic
    Outside Left: Schäfer, Zebec, Czibor
    Inside halves/connectors: F.Walter, Kocsis, Puskas (all equal), then Schiaffino
    Centre forwards: Hügi (as executor), Hidegkuti (as "thinking" player), Stojaspal (as "gapless commuter").

    His commentary:
    "The best attack? The Hungarians, but closely followed by the Germans. Only the inside forward trio of Kocsis-Hidegkuti-Puskas outdid the German inside trio Morlock-O.Walter-F.Walter (from the 6-1 bashing of Austria). Kocsis is just unstoppable! Puskas is equalled by F.Walter as a selfless teamplayer and strategic. The best outside forwards: at the right doubtlessly Brazil`s Julinho, at the left Schäfer despite Czibor."
  8. Gregoriak

    Gregoriak BigSoccer Supporter

    Feb 27, 2002
    From the selections of these four gentlemen, Kicker magazine then went on to compile the 1954 "World XI".

    Goal: Beara
    Full Backs: D.Santos, Kohlmeyer or Crnkovic
    Stopper: Wright
    Halves: Ocwirk or Cajkovski or Bozsik (who would want to decide between them?)
    Outside forwards: Julinho, Czibor or Schäfer
    Inside forwards: Kocsis, F.Walter, Puskas or Schiaffino.

    There we have it!
  9. Gregoriak

    Gregoriak BigSoccer Supporter

    Feb 27, 2002
    Thanks! I have to return the compliment to you (and Ianman). Thanks to the internet, I can finally make use of these old books!
  10. lanman

    lanman BigSoccer Supporter

    Aug 30, 2002

    Excellent work. My own personal thoughts on this would be that Puskas has to be discounted from this list as he only played the group games (which were largely a formality for all teams) and was a passenger in the final (despite scoring). Czibor, likewise should really be considered as an inside forward as that is where he ended up playing for the big games, and thus ranks just behind Walter and Schiaffino. From that (and the contribution from the experts) I think my own team would be along the lines of:

    --Dj Santos---Wright----Kohlmeyer
  11. Gregoriak

    Gregoriak BigSoccer Supporter

    Feb 27, 2002
    I didn`t know that about Czibor - you learn something new everyday. I will act accordingly and consider him an inside forward (which means he`ll have no place in these teams).

    Based on the info from the previous posts:

    Team A






    Team B

    -----Zebec--------Hügi--------Budai II




  12. Titanlux

    Titanlux Member+

    Nov 27, 2017
    In this table I have added all the ideal XIs that I have compiled from this championship. In some cases, the same source put up to the top 5 in each position. Therefore, the score that I have put would be: 5 for the members of teams A, 4 for those of B, 3 for those of C, 2 for those of D and 1 for those of E. If anyone has any more, I can add it.

    mejores mundial_redimensionar.jpg
  13. Titanlux

    Titanlux Member+

    Nov 27, 2017
    Based exclusively on the total data, without giving greater credibility to one source or another, I propose 2 ideal teams, although I have two questions to clarify: 1st: Both the midfielders of team A and those of team B played on the right, at least theoretically, which is why, I have placed two of them on the left. 2nd: 3 of the stars of the championship were inside left: Puskas, Schiaffino and Fritz Walter. Obviously, all 3 do not fit in team A; in fact I will only place the best qualified. It would be unforgivable to forget one of them in the B team, so I have decided to include them both, despite the fact that the German was on the right.

    TEAM A

    Grosics; Djalma Santos, Liebrich, Rodríguez Andrade; Ocwirk, Bozsik; Julinho, Kocsis, Hidegkuti, Puskas, Czibor.

    TEAM B

    Turek; Santamaría, Wright, Nilton Santos; Cajkovski, Eckel; Rahn, F. Walter, O. Walter, Schiaffino, Schafer.

    It is really curious how in team A there are a majority of finalists and in team B, a majority of champions.
  14. wm442433

    wm442433 Member+

    Sep 19, 2014
    FC Nantes
    Before 1956, France Football don't provide ratings yet but they select the best players of a match in the last column of their short reports.

    Here it is for the 1954 World Cup. Partially. The group 2 and the semi-finals + the final are missing.

    Group 1

    France v Yugoslavia : 0-1 (Milutinovic).
    Marcel, Penverne, Remetter, Gianessi. Beara, Horvath, Cajkovski, Bobek, Milutinovic, Zebec.

    Brazil v Mexico : 5-0 (Baltazar, Didi 2x, Pinga, Julinho).
    D. Santos, Brandaozinho, Didi, Julinho, Pinga, Rodriguez. Balcazar, Lamadrid.

    France v Mexico : 3-2 (Vincent, Cardenas o.g., Lamadrid, Balcazar, Kopa).
    Vincent, Kaelbel. Lamadrid, Cardenas, Balcazar, Torres, Arellano.

    Brazil v Yugoslavia : 1-1 (Zebec, Didi)
    N. Santos, Pinheiro, Bauer, Didi, Julinho. Mitic, Milutinovic, Vukas, Zebec, Cajkovski.

    Group 2 (Hungary, West Germany, Turkey, South Korea)

    Group 3

    Austria v Scotland : 1-0 (Probst).
    Schmied, Happel, Probst. Martin, Davidson, Docherty, Mochan.

    Uruguay v Czechoslovakia : 2-0 (Miguez, Schiaffino).
    Ambrois, Varela, Andrade, Schiaffino, Maspoli. Reimann, Novak, Hemele, Pazicky.

    Austria v Czechoslovakia : 5-0 (Stojaspal 2x, Probst 3x).
    Happel, Stojaspal, Probst. Hlavacek, Hemele, NOvak.

    Uruguay v Scotland : 7-0 (Borges 3x, Miguez 2x, Abbadie 2x)
    Schiaffino, Ambrois, Borgesn Abbadie. Davidson, Docherty.

    Group 4

    England v Belgium : 4-4 (Anoul 2x, Broadis 2x, Lofthouse 2x, Coppens, Dickinson o.g.).
    Matthews, Taylor, Broadis, Wright, Staniforth. Coppens, Mermans, Anoul, Carré, Gernaey.

    Switzerland v Italy : 2-1 (Ballamann, Boniperti, Huegi)
    Parlier, Neury, Volanthen. Giacomazzi, Tognon, Lorenzi, Vincenzi, Neri, Nesti, Boniperti, Muccinelli.

    England v Switzerland : 2-0 (Mullen, Wilshaw)
    Wright, Dickinson, Wilshaw, Mullen. Neury, Parlier, Eggiman, Meier.

    Italy v Belgium : 4-1 (Pandolfini, Galli, Frignani, Lorenzi, Anoul).
    Italy : all the attack*, Neri, Nesti, Magnini. Belgium : Carré, Huysmans.
    * = Lorenzi, Pandolfini, Galli, Cappello, Frignani. Sorted in 3-2-2-3 in the report.


    Switzerland v Italy : 4-1 (Huegi 2x, Ballaman, Nesti, Fatton).
    Parlier, Neury, Volanthen, Ballaman, Huegi. Viola.

    West Germany v Turkey : 7-2 (O. Walter, Schaeffer 2x, Mustafa, Morlock 3x, F. Walter, Lefter).
    Schaeffer, O. and F. Walter, Morlock, Klodt, Eckel. Lefter, Mustafa, Necmi, Coskun.


    Uruguay v England : 4-2 (Borges, Lofthouse, Varela, Schiaffino, Finney, Ambrois).
    Schiaffino, Abbadie, Andrade. Matthews, Lofthouse.

    Austria v Switzerland : 7-5 (Ballaman 2x, Huegi 2x, Wagner 2x, Koerner II 2x, Ocwirk, Hanappi o.g., Probst).
    Wagner, Ocwirk, Koerner II, Stojaspal. Ballaman, Huegi, VOlanthen, Kernen.

    Hungary v Brazil : 4-2 (Hidegkuti, Kocsis 2x, D. Santos, Lantos, Julinho).
    Kocsis, Hidegkuti, Czibor. Julinho, Didi, Pinheiro.

    West Germany v Yugoslavia : 2-0 (Horvath o.g., Rahn).
    Schaeffer, F. Walter, Rahn. Stankovic, Cajkovski, Boskov, Zebec, Vukas, Milutinovic.

    The Semi-finals + the Final are missing.

    Before the semi-finals there's an article untitled "Kocsis and Schiaffino, the two bests of this championship".
    There's a direct comparision between these two there.
    +/- in short (trying to translate as well as I can) :

    - "two insides, who play 'out-of-the-mould' due to their personality. Visibly, they're an example for most of their teammates".
    - "they're not into brutality or negative tactics and never blame their partners"
    - "in the confusion or under pressure, the Uruguayan and the Magyar keep their lucidity on the events and on the people - most of all when Puskas is missing like on last sunday - they are peerless tacticians.

    How they differ :

    Kocsis is less rapid than Schiaffino and uses less the sudden change of pace between almost walking and high running speed.
    Moreover, the magyar has more the temper of a forward in order to rest and to be in good position at the end of the favourable chances and let Hidekgkuti playing in V, i.e as a chief of attack, withdraw behind the other forwards.
    Thus, we can see Hidegkuti providing help up to his back lines whilst Kocsis keeps the opponent's defender on tenterhooks at the off-side limit. Kocsis has an astonishing positional sense. He runs where the ball can be passed to him easily, in the depth, or from a cross. The inside left position seems to be his favorite position, undoublty because as a right-handed, he has better support on his left leg to volley the ball with the foot or with the head.
    Last sunday, he scored two goals against Brazil with two headers, with some jumping, some sharpness and some power that commanded admiration.
    [elsewhere in another article we can read that we musn't think that it was that easy for Kocsis during this match with a great duel against Pinheiro for instance. Between his two goals : 7' and 88']

    Although he is taller, Schiaffino is less good than Kocsis in the air, but who could stand comparison with the Hungarian in that domain? In return, Schiaffino has more the temper of a defender than his international rival. Kocsis is purely an attacker, Schiaffino is a more complete footballer, more team member. He's good in all the departments.
    We thought, on saturday, in Basel, against England, when Schiaffino, in order to replace Varela, played half and back, that if ever he specialized at such a position, no rival could ever contest the supremacy to him.
    Neverthless, following the saying : "on naît rôtisseur, on devient cuisinier", we can say that a footballer is born attacker but that he becomes a defender.

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