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Seven classic England v Germany meetings

England v Germany: classic matches from over the years

England go to Germany on Tuesday in the Nations League in the latest instalment of one of their biggest rivalries.

Gareth Southgate’s side beat Die Mannschaft in their last meeting in the Euro 2020 last 16, their first knockout win over their old rivals since the 1966 World Cup final.

Between those games, the Germans had the upper hand in major tournaments – although there was also a very famous win in qualifying for the Three Lions.

BBC Sport looks at some classic meetings between the two.

1966 World Cup final

Throwback to when England won the World Cup

England’s finest football hour came against West Germany, winning the 1966 World Cup final 4-2 at Wembley.

Helmut Haller gave the Germans the lead before Geoff Hurst and Martin Peters goals turned it round. Had Wolfgang Weber not equalised in the 89th minute, England would have won 2-1 but without the iconic moments that were to follow.

Hurst scored twice in extra time – the first being adjudged to have crossed the line in an era before goalline technology – for the only ever World Cup final hat-trick. The late clinching goal was met with the famous piece of BBC commentary from Kenneth Wolstenholme – “there are people on the pitch, they think it’s all over. It is now”.

1970 World Cup

West German came from 2-0 down against England at the 1970 World Cup

West Germany got some revenge four years later when they came back from 2-0 down to beat England in the quarter-finals.

Alan Mullery and Peters put England in control but an error from keeper Peter Bonetti let in Franz Beckenbauer’s effort and Uwe Seeler sent it to extra time.

Hurst had a goal disallowed and Gerd Muller volleyed in for 3-2 and the German win.

1990 World Cup

World Cup 1990 – England v Germany: England lose on penalties

In what would become a recurring theme, England were knocked out by Germany (or West Germany) on penalties in the 1990 World Cup semi-final.

The game ended 1-1, with the West Germans leading through a deflected Andreas Brehme free-kick before Gary Lineker’s equaliser with 10 minutes to go.

Paul Gascoigne’s tears – and Lineker’s reaction to the bench – after a yellow card that would have ruled the midfielder out of the final have gone down in folklore.

In the end he need not have worried because Stuart Pearce and Chris Waddle’s missed penalties in the shootout meant Germany went to the final instead, where they beat Argentina.

Euro ’96

Oh look, another penalty shootout defeat by Germany in a major tournament semi-final.

England were on the crest of a wave at their home tournament, including a famous 4-1 win over the Netherlands in the group stages and a penalty shootout victory over Spain in the quarters.

Alan Shearer gave the Three Lions a third-minute lead over the Germans but Stefan Kuntz levelled just 13 minutes later.

Gareth Southgate was the man to miss the crucial penalty this time, although it did land him a gig in a pizza ad with Pearce and Waddle.

2002 World Cup qualifying

Michael Owen
Michael Owen’s hat-trick in Munich helped him win the Ballon d’Or

In one of England’s most impressive qualifying victories ever, Sven-Goran Eriksson’s side hit five goals in Germany in 2001.

Carsten Jancker gave the Germans an early lead but Michael Owen – who won the Ballon d’Or that year – hit a hat-trick and Liverpool team-mates Steven Gerrard and Emile Heskey also netted.

England went on to qualify for Japan and South Korea via a late David Beckham goal against Greece, while Germany ended up losing the World Cup final after going through the play-offs.

2010 World Cup

A game that helped change football forever as Frank Lampard’s shot that crossed the line but was not given was used as a big factor in arguments for the video assistant referee system years later.

That would have made it 2-2 but it stayed 2-1 and Germany went on to win 4-1.

The game was also famous for the moment Gareth Barry made Mesut Ozil look like Usain Bolt.

Euro 2020

Watch: What England’s win over Germany means for fans

England finally beat Germany in a major tournament knockout game, for the first time in 55 years, in the Euro 2020 (played in 2021) last-16 tie at Wembley.

Raheem Sterling gave Southgate’s side the lead from Luke Shaw’s cross and Harry Kane added a second from Jack Grealish’s ball.

Some 40,000 fans were delirious but in a change it was Italy, not the Germans, who beat England on penalties – in the final.

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