Karl-Heinz Schnellinger, German soccer legend, dies – La Opinion

Karl-Heinz Schnellinger, German soccer legend, dies – La Opinion

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Karl-Heinz SchnellingerGerman football legend of the 1960s, has died at the age of 85 in the Italian city of Milanwhere he lived, his family informed the German media.

Historical defender of the Lombard club and the then West Germany national team, he stood out for his performance and versatility at the back –He could play as a left-back, center back and libero– and in the regularity in his performance, which is why he received the nickname of “Volkswagen.”

Born in the town of Düren, in the region of North Rhine-Westphalia, Schnellinger began playing football in the youth ranks of his city club, from where he went, at the age of 19, to FC Colonia.

After establishing himself as one of Germany’s leading defenders and establishing himself as one of the strongholds of the national team, He began his journey through Italy in 1963, when he signed for Mantova.

After a year, he went to Rome and from there, also after a single season, he would land at the club where he would make a place for himself in its history: AC Milan.

With the rorroneri Schnellinger would play more than 300 games over nine seasons and would reach the peak of his career, obtaining along the way one Serie A, three Italian Cups, one European Cup, two European Cup Winners’ Cups and one Intercontinental Cuphaving a relevant role in all the conquests, in addition to having been included in the Milanese club hall of fame.

His time on the German National Team was also very relevant. During the 13 years, from 1958 to 1971, that he defended the jersey of the Mannschaft, He played 47 official matches and participated in four World Cups, from Sweden 58 to Mexico 70, with the runner-up finish in the World Cup in England 66 and third place in the Mexican championship as the greatest achievements.

His most epic moment with the Nationalelf It would come in a match that, curiously, ended in defeat.

In the semifinal of the World Cup in Mexico 70 between West Germany and Italy, the country in which the emblematic defender played, Schnellinger tied the team at 1-1 in the 92nd minute, after the Central Europeans, led by Franz Beckenbauer and Uwe Seeler, had been losing throughout the contest.

Later, in extra time, one of the most iconic moments in football history would take place, when Italy, after successive changes on the scoreboard, They would win 4 to 3 in extra time in which five goals were scored. It was known as “The Match of the Century.”

Schnellinger would leave the national team shortly after that crash and He would retire permanently from football in 1975.after playing a final year in the Bundesliga in the ranks of Tennis Borussia Berlin.

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