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World Cup A-Z: Penalties

1 June 2014

Penalties were first introduced to the FIFA World Cup in 1978 and 22 shoot-outs have taken place since then.

The first ever penalty shoot-out at a World Cup came in Spain 1982.

West Germany went up against France in the Semi-Finals and, with the score at 3-3 after 120 minutes, spot-kicks were needed to separate the sides.

Both teams took six penalties each and the Germans won it 5-4, which was the start of their formidable penalty record to date.

Since 1982, they have been involved in three other shoot-outs - in 1986, 1990 and 2006 - and have won them all, which is a record for the most penalty victories.

At Italia '90, West Germany beat England 4-3 on penalties to advance to the Final, with Stuart Pearce and Chris Waddle missing, and that set the tone for England's dismal shoot-out record at the biggest footballing tournament.

In all, the Three Lions have taken part in three shoot-outs - that defeat to the Germans being followed by losses to Argentina in 1998, and Portugal in 2006.

As we all know, England's penalty failings stretch beyond the World Cup as they have been eliminated from six of the past 10 international tournaments on penalties.

Hodgson told The Telegraph in the build-up to the 2014 World Cup: "The best way of not losing on penalties is not to get to them."

Easier said than done, Roy.

Anyway, only two Finals have been decided on penalties and both of them involve Italy.

In 1994, Roberto Baggio missed from 12 yards out giving Brazil a 3-2 victory following a goalless draw after 90 minutes. The Italians put that pain behind them, though, by overcoming France 5-3 in the 2006 Final following a 1-1 draw after extra-time

Interestingly, only two of the 22 shoot-outs have gone into sudden death. The aforementioned 1982 shoot-out between West Germany and France saw each side take six, while Sweden and Romania took six penalties each in their Quarter-Final battle at USA '94.

Click here to see the other letters in our World Cup A-Z


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