Six of one and half a dozen of the other: Schalke and Bayern’s classic Pokal goalfest

Take your minds back to 1984, the year when the DFB-Pokal would go goal crazy.

While the early rounds of the competition would produce a number of thrashings and thrillers – 1. FC Köln’s 6-2 thrashing of Kickers Offenbach and second division side Karlsruher SC’s 5-4 extra-time victory over top-flight 1. FC Kaiserslautern would stand out – the 1983/84 edition of the DFB-Pokal would be largely remembered for Borussia Mönchengladbach’s Lothar Matthäus’ penalty shootout miss in the final against club-to-be FC Bayern München – and two thrilling semi-final ties that between them would produce a total of twenty-six goals.

The first semi-final would see a ding-dong encounter between Mönchengladbach and Werder Bremen that would swing one way and the other until Die Fohlen finally settled matters in extra time, but this would only prove to be the appetiser for the goalfest that would take place in Gelsenkirchen the following day when then second division Schalke 04 would take on FC Bayern München.

Die Knappen would ease into their cup campaign with three-goal wins over first division Fortuna Düsseldorf and non-league FC Charlottenburg, and would reach the last eight with a close but ultimately straightforward 2-1 win over Karlsruhe SC. Their quarter-final encounter with Hertha BSC would be a much tighter affair, with Diethelm Ferner’s side coming back from 3-1 down to secure a 3-3 draw in Berlin before triumphing 2-0 at the Parkstadion.

Bayern meanwhile would rack up nine goals in straightforward wins over second division KSV Hessen Kassel and third division FC Augsburg, but would play almost three hours of scoreless football with Bayer 05 Uerdingen before Hansi Pflügler finally settled the issue in the fifty-sixth minute of their third round replay. Non-league 1. FC Bocholt would restrict the free-scoring Bayern side to just two goals in the quarter-final as Udo Lattek’s side claimed a 2-1 win, setting up a semi-final meeting that would forever be one of the great German cup classics – an encounter between two sides from different divisions that over the course of three and a half hours would produce see-sawing drama and a staggering seventeen goals.

When the crowd of just under seventy-one thousand people made their way to Gelsenkirchen’s Parkstadion on 2nd May 1984, nobody what have known they would be in for a thriller, one of those rare footballing spectacles that would be worth every Pfennig.

Sitting in second place in the 2. Bundesliga Schalke would come into the game more in hope than expectation, but they would not by any means be a pushover for their more illustrious opponents. Among their starting number they would have former Bayern man Walter Junghans in goal, onetime national team captain Bernard Dietz shoring up the defence, and a precocious midfield talent just one day past his eighteenth birthday: Olaf Thon.

Part I: Gelsenkirchen goes goal crazy

In front of a noisy crowd the Bavarians would be first off the blocks, sweeping into a 2-0 lead inside the first twelve minutes. With three minutes gone Norbert Nachtweih would swing a right-sided free-kick into the box, and the Rummenigge brothers would do the rest. A nod out to the left from Kalle, and well-placed return cross from Michael which Kalle would stab into the net from six yards.

Nine minutes later winger Reinhold Mathy would double the lead with a wonderful team goal: sweeping forward from deep inside their own half, Danish international Søren Lerby would send a high ball out right for Mathy, who would jink inside Dietz and exchange passes with Michael Rummenigge before sweeping the ball past Junghans. It was all set to be a goal riot, but nobody in the ground could have ever predicted what sort of goal riot it would be.

Within seven minutes of Mathy’s goal Schalke would be right back in the game with two goals of their own. Seconds after going two down a free-kick from out of the left would be floated into the Bayern box for the unmarked Thomas Kruse would bury the chance, and in the nineteenth minute Thon would seize on a poor clearing header from Klaus Augenthaler to level the scores. Having wrong-footed the Bayern sweeper and dragged the ball inside the defender with his left foot, Thon would thrash the ball past ‘keeper Jean-Marie Pfaff at the near post with his right.

It was end to end stuff, and that would be just the beginning.

Mere seconds after Schalke had worked their way back into the match, Bayern would be in front again. A long ball floated in by Augenthaler, a botched clearance attempt from two white-shirted Schalke defenders, and a smart right-footed finish from the younger Rummenigge.

With rain now starting to fall, conditions would start to get increasingly tricky as the home side continued to press. Pfaff would just about manage to keep hold of the ball in a frenetic goalmouth scramble and Thon would shoot narrowly wide, but when the half-time whistle blew Lattek’s side would keep a hold of their lead. Despite the foul weather, the crowd were being royally entertained by a hard-fought yet open game.

The second half would start in much the same way as the first had finished. Bayern could very easily have extended their advantage as a crisp low drive from the peroxide blond Nachtweih veered slightly before hitting the upright, but a catalogue of defensive blunders would allow the hosts to level things up again at 3-3. A poor clearance from Pfaff would allow winger Mathias Schipper to send in a cross from the left, and with the Bayern defenders all over the place Thon – at just 5’ 6” the smallest man on the pitch – would be on the spot to head the ball into the empty net.

Eleven minutes later the game would be turned on its head completely, as defensive midfielder Peter Stichler gave Die Königsblauen the lead for the first time. With a tiring and increasingly fragile Bayern being run ragged by the energetic striker Klaus Täuber, Michael Opitz’ looping ball into the penalty area would be nodded home by the unmarked Stichler, who sent the ball into the low left-hand corner of the net past Pfaff’s desperate dive.

Ferner’s side should have really closed the game out, but having taken the lead would relax ever so slightly – allowing Bayern to build up a final head of steam as the clock ticked into the final ten minutes of the ninety. Lattek would send on another striker in form of the lumbering giant Dieter Hoeneß in place of defensive midfielder Bernd Dürnberger, and almost immediately the balding big man would have the desired impact. Charging down the left, Lerby would swing the ball into the Schalke box, and with the defenders concentrating on Hoeneß the unmarked Michael Rummenigge would send the ball past Junghans with a terrific diving header.

Bayern would now be doing most of the pressing as they took their turn to switch up a gear, but neither side would be able to force a winner in the final ten minutes. The final whistle would guarantee a further thirty minutes of rain-soaked entertainment for the seventy-thousand plus crowd, and despite the rain hammering down nobody would be going anywhere.

The first period of extra time would see the home side have the first chance as a Michael Jakobs shot was smothered by Pfaff, but this would just be the calm before the final storm. Halfway through the second period the two sides would still be locked at four apiece, but after that this already crazy game would take an even crazier turn.

With eight minutes remaining, Bayern would win a free kick just inside the Schalke half, and the reliable Nachtweih would swing it high and long into the opposition penalty area. The towering Hoeneß would nod the ball back inside, but only back to the retreating Dietz who would play a gentle pass back to the ‘keeper. It should have been an easy ball to collect, but the Schalke Torhüter would make a complete mess of it. As he scrambled desperately to grasp the slippery spherical object, the ever-alert Hoeneß would tap the ball from under Junghans’ outstretched hand before bundling it into the net. It was the sort of scrappy, ugly finish for which Hoeneß would be famous.

With a mix of pure elation and relief, the Bayern players would celebrate retaking the lead, but this game would have a few more twists in its tail yet. Just three minutes later, a Schalke corner would be swung in from the right, and once again the red shirts would go AWOL as Dietz made the most of the opportunity to make up for his earlier back-pass with a left-footed volley that took a curious trajectory over Pfaff and into the top right-hand corner of the Bayern net. Amidst the wild celebrations, the bespectacled Ferner would remain tight-lipped on the touchline.

Perhaps the Schalke coach knew something everybody else didn’t. Just another three minutes would pass, and the game would swing back towards Die Roten again. With the home side pressing for a winner Bayern would break through the middle, and the perfect slide-rule pass from Kalle Rummenigge would find Hoeneß in space with just Junghans to beat. The giant centre-forward lumbered towards the goal, and looked to have taken the ball too far before crashing a shot that clattered off the legs of the ‘keeper before find its way into the net. With just two minutes remaining, it was surely all over.

Not a bit of it. As the final whistle approached, the home side would have nothing to lose and threw everything and the kitchen sink forward. As the nervous Bayern bench were looking at the watches, a mass of white shirts were swarming in their penalty area like angry bees. Substitute Hubert Clute-Simon would call Pfaff into action with a half chance after his shot nutmegged Augenthaler, and the home side would win two free kicks just outside the Bayern penalty area in the space of a minute. As the final seconds ticked by, one could sense something in the air.

The Bayern players are clearly waiting for the final whistle, and a ragged looking Norbert Nachtweih is looking more like something you’d find floating about in some seedy bar on the Reeperbahn – a Nachtweib, one could say – in his untucked shirt, which resembles a red mini dress. If that isn’t enough to scare away the Schalke attackers, I don’t know what is.

And then it comes. From the second free kick, there’s a step over from Thon, and the ball is swung into the box by Bernd Dierßen. A scramble in the six yard box, red and white shirts mangled together. Augenthaler attempts to clear. First with his boot, then with his head. The second clearance is poor, and the ball loops out into space on the left. Lying in wait is the inevitable Thon, whose left-footed volley is struck with an almost magical timing and precision. The ball rockets past Pfaff and high into the right hand-side of the net.

It is the last kick of the match. 6-6. Unglaublich.

This video contains full coverage of the first game at the Parkstadion, Gelsenkirchen

Part II: No let-up in München

Back in those days a draw after extra time in the DFB-Pokal – apart from the final itself – would result in a replay. And so the teams would gather again in Munich’s Olympiastadion a week later. While nowhere near as frenetic as the classic encounter at the Parkstadion, this second meeting would be just as exciting. Bayern would take the lead through Kalle Rummenigge just after the half-hour mark following a neat through-ball from Lerby, and would double their lead a minute before half-time with a goal that truly showcased the elder Rummenigge’s arsenal of skills. From a free-kick just outside the opposition box, the Bayern skipper would cheekily lift the ball over the wall – and Dieter Hoeneß would do the rest with a cracking shot on the half-volley.

At half-time it looked as if normal service had resumed, but just minutes after the break Schalke would switch things back into crazy mode. It would be that man Thon in the centre of things again, with his lovely threaded pass find Michael Jakobs who rounded the fast-advancing Pfaff before sliding the ball lust inside the post from the tightest of angles. Upping their game, the Königsblauen would level things up with eighteen minutes remaining as Michael Opitz was able to wriggle into the Bayern box before sending a skidding shot past Pfaff.

As the final ten minutes approached and extra time loomed once more, Bayern would play the final ace of the match. Seizing on a mistake in the middle of the pitch from Schipper, Lerby would send substitute Kalle Del’Haye out on the right – whose sharp cross would be met by the flying Kalle Rummenigge. Rummenigge’s diving header would settle the tie once and for all, and would be a suitably fitting end to what had been a fantastic spectacle.

This video contains highlights of the replay at the Olympiastation, München

Stats and Facts

1st May 1984, Parkstadion, Gelsenkirchen

FC Schalke 04 – FC Bayern München 6:6 aet (2:3, 4:4)
(Kruse 13., Thon 19., 61., 120., Stichler 72., Dietz 115. / Kh. Rummenigge 3., Mathy 12., M. Rummenigge 20., 80., D. Hoeneß 112., 118.)

FC Schalke 04: Walter Junghans, Thomas Kruse, Bernard Dietz, Michael Jakobs, Mathias Schipper, Michael Opitz (106. Klaus Berge), Bernd Dierßen, Peter Stichler, Volker Abramczik (73. Hubert Clute-Simon), Olaf Thon, Klaus Täuber.

FC Bayern München: Jean-Marie Pfaff, Norbert Nachtweih, Klaus Augenthaler, Bertram Beierlorzer, Bernd Dürnberger (77. Dieter Hoeneß), Wolfgang Grobe (109. Wolfgang Kraus), Søren Lerby, Hans Pflügler, Reinhold Mathy, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, Michael Rummenigge.

Yellow Cards: Stichler, Täuber / Mathy, Lerby

Referee: Wolf-Günter Wiesel (Ottbergen)
Attendance: 70,600

9th May 1984, Olympiastadion, München

FC Bayern München – FC Schalke 04 3:2 (2:0)
(Kh. Rummenigge 32., 79., D. Hoeneß 44. / Jakobs 50., Opitz 72.)

FC Bayern München: Jean-Marie Pfaff, Bernd Martin, Bertram Beierlorzer, Klaus Augenthaler, Bernd Dürnberger, Wolfgang Grobe, Søren Lerby, Norbert Nachtweih, Michael Rummenigge (48. Kalle del’Haye), Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, Dieter Hoeneß.

FC Schalke 04: Walter Junghans, Thomas Kruse, Michael Jakobs, Bernard Dietz, Mathias Schipper, Klaus Berge, Peter Stichler, Bernd Dierßen, Michael Opitz, Klaus Täuber, Olaf Thon.

Yellow Cards: – / Dierßen

Referee: Hans-Joachim Osmers (Bremen)
Attendance: 40,000

(This piece is taken from Rick’s work in progress, The Pain and the Glory: My Thirty-Three Years as a Fan of FC Bayern München)

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London-based but with his heart firmly in Fröttmaning, Rick Joshua's love of German football goes back more than thirty years and has witnessed everything from the pain of Spain '82 and the glory of Italia '90 to the sheer desolation of Euro 2000. This has all been encapsulated in the encyclopaedic Schwarz und Weiß website and blog, which at some three hundred or so pages is still not complete. Should you wish to disturb him, you can get in touch with Rick on Twitter @fussballchef. This carries a double meaning, as he can prepare a mean Obazda too.

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