The football world is saddened by the death of German football legend Andreas Brehme at the age of 63.
Brehme scored the decisive penalty as West Germany defeated Argentina to win the World Cup in 1990 and enjoyed a distinguished club career with Bayern Munich, Inter Milan, Kaiserslautern and others.
His death on Monday night – due to cardiac arrest – comes just weeks after the coach of that 1990 team, Franz Beckenbauer, died at the age of 78.
It was a West German team that beat England on penalties in the semi-finals, with Stuart Pearce and Chris Waddle conspicuously missing their spot kicks.
But what happened to the Italian ’90 World Cup champions?
The West German team will face Argentina in the 1990 World Cup final in Rome. Back row (from left to right): Thomas Berthold, Bodo Illgner, Klaus Augenthaler, Guido Buchwald, Pierre Littbarski, Rudi Voller. Front row (from left to right): Thomas Hassler, Jurgen Klinsmann, Jurgen Kohler, Andreas Brehme, Lothar Matthaus.
Andreas Brehme converted the decisive penalty as West Germany won the 1990 World Cup.
Brehme (right), photographed with Franz Beckenbauer (left) and Lothar Matthaus after the 1990 victory.
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Coach: Franz Beckenbauer
The greatest legend of German football, who that night joined Brazilian Mario Zagallo to win the World Cup as a player and coach. Frenchman Didier Deschamps joined the club in 2018.
Beckenbauer died on January 7 of this year at the age of 78, causing enormous grief across the football world.
His health had worsened after the death of his son Stephan from a brain tumor at age 46 in 2015 and Beckenbauer had largely retired from public life after losing sight in his right eye and suffering heart problems.
Goalkeeper – Bodo Illgner
The goalkeeper who saved Pearce in the 1990 semi-final shootout retired from international football after the 1994 World Cup and later won the Champions League with Real Madrid.
After retiring in 2001, he worked as a pundit for Sky Deutschland and beIN Sport, while dividing his time between Miami and Spain with his wife Bianca.
German goalkeeper Bodo Illgner saves England’s Stuart Pearce in the 1990 semi-final.
Sweeper – Klaus Augenthaler
Augenthaler was a one-club best man, racking up over 400 appearances for Bayern Munich and later working as a youth team and assistant coach there.
He was a coach until 2011, managing Nuremberg, Bayer Leverkusen and Wolfsburg among other clubs.
Augenthaler returned to Bayern last year as a youth coach in the club’s international program and works as an expert for the internal channel FC Bayern-TV.
Klaus Augenthaler follows England star Paul Gascoigne closely during the 1990 semi-final
Central defense – Guido Buchwald
Buchwald, then a Stuttgart player, was given the unenviable task of eliminating Diego Maradona from the 1990 final, a task he performed very well.
In 2015 he returned to Stuttgart as a scout and worked there until 2019. Today he is a member of the board of directors of the Youth Football Foundation and sponsors a shelter for seriously ill children and their families.
Guido Buchwald (left) was tasked with marking Argentine star Diego Maradona in the final.
Central defender – Jürgen Kohler
Kohler played for several top clubs, including Bayern Munich, Juventus and Borussia Dortmund, as well as amassing 105 appearances for Germany.
In addition to success in 1990, he lifted the Euro Cup trophy in 1996 and won the Champions League with Dortmund a year later.
Kohler has worked as a coach since his retirement and was most recently youth coach for Viktoria Cologne of the German third division. He was recently linked with the vacant role in the Ghana national team.
Right Back – Thomas Berthold
The German player who made Paul Gascoigne cry. Berthold was the man attacked by Gazza to earn the yellow card that would have kept him out of the final.
Berthold has been a commentator on football programs on the Sport1 network and for Deutsche Welle.
During the Covid pandemic, Berthold spoke openly about the German government’s lockdown measures and was associated with conspiracy theories.
Thomas Berthold received the tackle which saw Paul Gascoigne booked.
Left back – Andreas Brehme
Brehme was the man who scored the winning goal in the 1990 final from the penalty spot, just one of several highlights in a successful career for club and country.
After a brief coaching career, Brehme worked as an ambassador for the German Football Association and as a television commentator and newspaper columnist. He also works as an advisor to the Serbian club Vojvodina Novi Sad.
Brehme died of cardiac arrest at the age of 63 on Monday night.
Central midfielder – Thomas Hassler
The midfielder was part of the German team that won Euro 96 and played for several important clubs, including Juventus, Roma and Borussia Dortmund.
Upon beginning training, he was assistant manager of the Nigerian national team and the German club Cologne. Hassler is currently managing sixth division club BFC Preussen.
Thomas Hassler plays for Germany against Scotland at Euro 1992
Central midfielder – Lothar Matthaus
The captain of the winning West German team and its most prominent name. Matthaus was part of the team that won Euro 1980 and won many top honors with Bayern Munich.
Matthaus coached for about a decade, including with the Hungarian national team, and is now a leading pundit and commentator on German television.
Matthaus has been married five times and has four children. He was 47 when he met his fourth wife, Ukrainian model Kristina Liliana Chudinova, 21, at the Munich Oktoberfest.
His last marriage, to Anastasia Klimko, ended in 2021.
Lothar Matthaus signs a 1990 Germany shirt at a reunion event in Italy in October 2020
Central midfielder – Pierre Littbarski
1990 marked the end of Littbarski’s international career, although he played club football for another seven years, ending his career in Japan.
He then became a coach and managed teams from Germany, Japan, Australia, Iran and Liechtenstein.
Littbarski is a member of the board of directors of the Youth Football Foundation in Germany and in 2021 appeared in the German version of The Masked Singer as ‘Hammerhead Shark’, which lasted two episodes.
Pierre Littbarski and Lothar Matthaus parade with the trophy after West Germany’s victory in 1990
Center Forward – Rudi Voller
An eventful Italia ’90 saw Voller infamously spit on by Frank Rijkaard before being sent off, before winning the penalty in the final which Brehme scored.
Voller later coached the German national team and guided them to the 2002 World Cup final, losing to Brazil.
Lately, he has been part of a “working group” created by the German Federation ahead of Euro 2024. Voller was then named sporting director of the national team and served as interim boss for one match last year before that Julian Nagelsmann took over.
Rudi Voller took over as Germany’s interim coach for the friendly against France last September.
Center Forward – Jürgen Klinsmann
Klinsmann is well known to English football fans not only for his 1990s era, but also for his two memorable spells with Tottenham in the Premier League.
He would also coach the German national team, as well as Bayern Munich, the United States and Hertha Berlin.
His most recent role with South Korea came to an ignominious end last week after the country was knocked out of the Asian Cup by Jordan in the semi-finals.
It came after a fight between Spurs’ Son Heung-min and PSG’s Lee Kang-in over younger teammates who wanted to play table tennis. His son was left with a dislocated finger.
One of the reasons given for Klinsmann’s dismissal was a “failure to demonstrate leadership.”
Jurgen Klinsmann was most recently coach of South Korea, but his tenure came to an ignominious end after their Asian Cup campaign.