Line-up in the match against Mexico:
Djalma Santos, Brandãozinho, Nilton Santos, Pinheiro,
Mario Américo (masseur), Castilho and Bauer;
Julinho, Didi, Baltazar, Pinga and Rodrigues.
The team in 1954 (line-up in the first match, against Mexico): Castilho; Djalma Santos, Pinheiro and Nílton Santos; Brandãozinho and Bauer (C); Julinho, Didi, Baltazar, Pinga and Rodrigues.
Substitutes: Veludo (G), Cabeção (G), Paulinho, Alfredo, Eli, Mauro, Dequinha, Maurinho, Humberto, Indio and Rubens. Coach: Zezé Moreira.
»Brazil 5 x 0 Mexico
»Brazil 1 x 1 Yugoslavia
»Brazil 2 x 4 Hungary
For the first time, the Brazilian team would play the Qualifier for a World Cup (the adversaries in 1934 and 1938 withdrew from the competition, and Brazil was host in 1950). Brazil played against Chile and Paraguay, and won all four matches.
By looking at the results, it seems that the qualification came easy; it didn't. In the first match against Paraguay, in Assunción, the Paraguayans welcomed the Brazilian players with threatens and stones; Brazilian goalkeeper Veludo was hit by a bottle in the stadium, during the game. In the second match, in Brazil, came the pay back: Brazilians played very roughly, and and Paraguayans had to be sent to the hospital.
This rough playing was a noticeale sequel of the Maracanazo, the unforgetable event of the World Cup 1950, when Uruguay beat Brazil in the final match. Many said that Brazil lost that match because of cowardness. For years after that date, the Brazilian team, besides playing football, had to prove they were machos.
After the 1950 fiasco, the order in Brazil was renovation. Even the uniform was completely changed (the white jerseys which Brazilians worn until 1950 were definitely retired).
The new coach was Zezé Moreira. He was not as respected as his predecessor, Flavio Costa, but Costa lost the Cup in 1950, while Moreira won the Pan-American tournament of 1952, the first title conquered by Brazil away from home (we had been champions of Cup America in 1949, but playing at home, in Rio de Janeiro).
Most of the important players of 1950 were not recalled by Zezé, such as Barbosa, Bigode, Ademir, Zizinho and Jair. A few, the younger ones, remained: Bauer, Baltazar, Nilton Santos.
New soon-to-become-historic players showed up. Didi would be the leader of the team in the 1958 Cup in Sweden. Julinho Botelho would become known as "the man who shut up Maracanã"; after the Cup of 1954, Julinho moved to Fiorentina, Italy, and was fundamental for the team to conquer their first scudetto, in 1955/56; Julinho was invited to play the 1958 Cup, but refused, honestly saying that someone playing in Brazil deserved better that chance; in 1959, he came back to play in Brazil -and the Brazilian team; in a match in Maracanã, Julinho was announced as substitute of Garrincha; 150,000 people booed Julinho as he entered the field; Julinho scored the first Brazilian goal in five minutes; he served for the second goal, and was elected the player of the match; in the end, the entire Maracanã stood up to applaud Julinho).
Brazil left to Switzerland on May 22nd 1954. For the first time, Brazil went to a World Cup aboard an airplane.
Brazil played the first match against Mexico, on June 16th.
Brazil won easily by 5 x 0, goals by Baltazar, Didi, Pinga (2) and Julinho.
In the trainings between matches, the Brazilian directors imagined ways to show that (trying to create a distinction from the team of 1950) the team was patriotic. Everyday, the Brazilian flag was hauled up, and the Brazilian anthem was performed; before each match, Brazilians kissed the flag.
In the next match, against Yugoslavia, a funny thing happened.
Pinheiro saves a goal in the match against Hungary
The Yugoslavians had won France, and, according to the rules of that Cup, a draw in their match would qualify both Brazil and Yugoslavia. The Brazilians didn't know that. The Yugs scored first, and Didi scored for Brazil, at 25' of second half.
The Yugoslavian players spent the remaining of the second half and the entire extension time trying to signify to Brazilians that the result was good for everybody; Brazilians ran like crazy till the end of the match, but didn't change the score.
Next match was against Hungary. The Magyars had won Germany by 8 x 3 and South Korea by 9 x 0. Even without Puskas, they had Boszik, Kocsis, Hidegkuti and Czibor, among others. They were better, and easily beat Brazil by 4 x 2 (Djalma Santos and Julinho scored for Brazil).
Brazil lost, but, still as a sequel of the Maracanazo in 1950, some players had to show they were macho. Nilton Santos and Bozsik kicked each other and were sent off; minutes later, Humberto was also off. When the match was over, the Brazilians started a fight with the Hungarian staff in the dressing rooms; many players got involved, including the coach Zezé Moreira, who hit the Minister of Sports of Hungary.
Brazil returned home, again without the title. However, this time, nobody could accuse the team of coward.
The team of 1954 is hardly mentioned in Brazil today; indeed, that cup is often referred to as "the Cup that Hungary lost".
The Hungarians faced Uruguay in the semi-final.
It was, as expected, a tight match; the normal time finished 2 x 2, the Hungarians scored twice in the extension and won by 4 x 2.
The final match, Hungary x Germany, was in many ways similar to the previous final, Brazil x Uruguay.
Hungary was the absolute favourite. They had won the Olympic Games in 1952. They hadn't lost a match in four years. They had already won Germany by 8 x 3, in the first stage (the Germans had saved many players, though). All the Hungarian stars would play, including Puskas. The Hungarians sent for their wives, so they could celebrate earlier. In eight minutes, Hungary was winning by 2 x 0. Just like the Brazilians did four year earlier, the Magyars started to celebrate.
Then, the unexpected happened. In ten minutes, the Germans scored twice and tied the match. Five minutes before the end, Helmut Rahn scored 3 x 2 for Germany, which became World Champion for the first time (years later, a rumour came up that the "German win may have been drug-fuelled").
»Much thanks to the Hungarians, the 1954 Cup saw 140 goals in 26 matches, with an average of 5.38 goals per match. This figure is yet to be beaten.
»The World Cup 1954 also said farewell to a whole generation of players who became legends in their respective countries: Obdulio Varela, from Uruguay; sir Stanley Matthews, from England; Rajko Mitic, from Yugoslavia; Fritz Walter, from Germany; Julinho Botelho, from Brazil; they all enchanted their countrymen and the world for the last time in a World Cup.