The Baltimore Sun from Baltimore, Maryland on July 10, 1994 · Page 29
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The Baltimore Sun from Baltimore, Maryland · Page 29

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Sunday, July 10, 1994
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Ml -'r "' Italy's Roberto Baggio kicks the ball past Spain goalkeeper Andoni Zubizarreta en route to his game-winning goal in the 88th minute. Brazil, Italy pull back from edge Bronco free kick fends off Dutch, 3-2 By John Powers Boston Globe ' DALLAS It had been 20 years since they had played each other In the World Cup. They'll be talking about this one in Sao Paulo and Amsterdam and a hundred thousand soccer bars for another 50. ! "I had help from above," Branco said yesterday afternoon after his free kick In the 81st minute pushed Brazil past the Netherlands, 3-2, at the Cotton Bowl and into a World Cup semifinal (against today's Romania-Sweden winner) for the first time since 1978. The real help the Brazilians had, charged the furious Dutch, was from a linesman who didn't see that Ro-mario was offside when Bebeto put Brazil up 2-0 in the 62nd minute. "It's terrible," said forward Dennis Bergkamp, who cut the lead to 2-1 less than two minutes later. The linesman was absolutely blind. Ro-marlo was three yards offside." I Soccer buffs will argue about that noncall Into the next millennium. But they'll agree that this was a brilliant and dramatic duel between two of the sport's most storied teams, i Brazil, which taught the world to play with elegance and verve and Joy. And the Netherlands, whose Clockwork Orange side of the 1970s gave birth to the idea of "total football." i "This game contained everything that football should contain," said REUTERS i J ; I -my i Hl j '--J -A- I y ' . -:- - 'z - 1 n V U ) ! i n V; H - ; J i 0 Mi U OH i Romario (wrapped in Brazilian flag) "4 ' -M . ; . ' ' v -, w a-i-A j, "' f : : ' i : i - ' 7 ' j 7 . J V. . f . . '''I.' ' 'i. ' ..". . in) -. ' - 1 '1 Quarterfinal I Bulgaria vs. Germany at East Rutherford, N J., 12:05 p.m., ESPN I Sweden vs. Romania at Palo Alto, Calif, 3:35 p.m., Ch. 13 (Ch. 7 to Join In progress after Orioles game) Dutch coach Dick Advocaat The last time the teams met, in 1974, the Brazilians were defending champions, but the Dutch won, 2-0, and went on to lose to West Germany in the final. This time, they played each other cautiously until halftime, then fiercely until the end. All five goals were scored in the final 38 minutes. And when Costa Rican referee Rodrigo Badilla blew his whistle six minutes into injury time, the Dutch were frantically trying to send the game into overtime while the Brazilians were praying for the end. "I said it would be a pretty match, an open match," said Brazil coach Carlos Alberto Parreira, who is gradually if grudgingly gaining respect from the critical fans back home and the media here. "It was probably the best match of the tournament and certainly the most dramatic." The Dutch, playing in only their second Cup since 1978, seemed all but finished after Bebeto had set up Romario in the 52nd minute, then scored himself 10 minutes later. On- See BRAZIL, 12C and Branco embrace after Brazil - (iiiMiiiii THE Baggio sinks Spain in 88th minute, 2-1 By Grahame L. Jones Los Angeles Times FOXBORO. Mass. For Italy, it was yet another journey to the edge of the precipice and yet another last-minute escape. And, Just as it had been against Nigeria four days earlier, it was Roberto Baggio who rode to the rescue. A goal by the ponytailed Juventus star in the 88th minute earned the Italians a deserved, albeit belabored, 2-1 victory over Spain yesterday and a berth In the World Cup semifinals. Baggio, who scored Uie tying goal in the 89th minute against the Nigerians and then the winner in overtime, again will be hailed from one end of Italy to the other for his heroics. But it would be very wrong to suppose that this was a victory due to the brilliance of a single player. Italy had many heroes yesterday. The first of them was the bald guy in sunglasses and a light blue shirt down by the Italian bench. Coach Arrigo Sacchi has survived a perilous trip through the soccer minefield during the past three weeks, but he has managed to stay one step ahead of disaster all the while. Yesterday, he took several more risks by tinkering with his starting lineup for the umpteenth time. He put goalkeeper Gianluca Pagli-uca back in the nets for the first time since Pagliuca was thrown out of the game against Norway on June 23. beat the Netherlands on Branco's free I .. to , m I'lif'i'in'WfaWii ii SUN K f r s AT ASSOCIATED PRESS All Pagliuca did was come up with a couple of critical second-half saves when the Spanish appeared to be getting the upper hand. He put Dlno Baggio into the starting lineup after the midfielder had been used only as a substitute against Nigeria. All Dlno did was score the opening goal with a rocketing first-half shot He put Roberto Slgnori on the bench, then sent him in for the second half. All Slgnori did was cause panic in the Spanish defense and provide the decisive final pass that resulted in Roberto Baggio' s game-winning goal. Not a bad afternoon's work for Sacchi, who continues to defy the odds and now is only two victories away from joining Vlttorio Pozzo (1934, 1938) and Enzo Bearzot (1982) as coaches to win the World Cup for Italy. And to think that, leading up to this game, more than 80 percent of Italians polled said they thought Sacchi, the 48-year-old former coach of AC Milan, should be fired. Yesterday's game, played in front of 54,605 on a hot, muggy, overcast afternoon at Foxboro Stadium, never rose to any great heights. The first half, in particular, was a largely tedious affair whose lone bright spot was Dlno Bagglo's goal. The 1992 Italian Olympic team star was on both ends of the goal, initiating the play and finishing it In See ITALY, 13C Summit distracts soccer fans. 12C Dutch dispute noncall. 12C ASSOCIATED PRESS kick that got past Ed De Goey. ' IHIsiDinsnsdl DDL) 8-7 defeat of As puts first place half game away By Peter Schmuck Sun Staff Writer These are festive times at Camden Yards, where the Orioles are crossing the plate at a furious pace and the sellout crowds are beginning to break out with a premature case of pennant fever. And why not, especially after rookie outfielder Jeffrey Hammonds hit a dramatic ninth-inning home run last night to defeat the Oakland Athletics, 8-7, and give the Orioles their first sudden-death victory of the year. Hammonds' eighth home run capped a comeback from a 7-2 deficit and pulled the club within a half-game of the first-place New York Yankees with one game left before the All-Star break. "I don't know how Joe Carter felt," Hammonds said afterward, "but I feel pretty good right now. I know this isn't the World Series, but it's the closest I've gotten yet" Of course, Hammonds was referring to Carter's sudden-death home run in Game 6 of last year's Fall Classic. Last night's game didn't carry that kind of weight, but the home run was a major career highlight for Jeffrey Hammonds acknowledges the cheers of a Camden Yards crowd that had gone wild because of his game-winning home run. In baseball blame game, it's owners who strike out I break baseball seasons into two groups. Those unencumbered by the threat of a strike, and those jeopardized by such a threat. The strike-free years are much more enjoyable. It is easier to follow pennant races and study box scores and partake in all the other staples of fandom when there is the promise that the season will not halt in mid-swing, rendering irrelevant all that has occurred. When there is the threat of a strike, the possibility that the game will fail to fulfill its fundamental promise to complete its season, everything has an asterisk by it. The Orioles are pretty hot these days, but it won't matter in the final reckoning if there is a strike later this year and this season gets bushwhacked in the fashion of the '8 1 season, which was halted for 50 days, skewed and diminished. Accordingly. I take a more skeptical approach to a strike-threatened season. As a fan, I find it impossible to invest my interest with the same intensity and purpose. No matter what occurs, there is always a little voice in my r SECTION SUNDAY, JULY 10, 1994 Opponent: Oakland Athletics Site: Oriole Park at Camden Yards Time: 1:35 p.m. TVRadio: Ch. 13WBAL (1090 AM) Starters: Athletics' Ron Darling (7-9, 4.62) vs. Orioles' Jamie Mover (3-6, 5.26) Tickets: Several hundred scattered singles remain, not Including 1 83 bleacher and 275 standing-room tickets that go on sale when the gates open. a young player who has fought through a series of injuries to get back into the starting lineup. "That was just an indication of what it could feel like," manager Johnny Oates said. "I sure hope we find out" The game could have gone either way, and it almost did. Oakland right fielder Ruben Sierra came to the plate in the top of the ninth with four hits to his credit and hit a mammoth shot to right field off Orioles reliever Alan Mills, but it sailed just foul and Mills ended up striking out the side. See GAME, 8C Camden Yards a homer haven. 8C Mussina on record pace. 8C Devo mum on reduced role. 8C GENE SWEENEY JR.SUN STAFF PHOTO am fx yg JOHN EISENBERG head sounding off as follows: "Big deal. It won't matter anyway when they're on strike." It is particularly troubling to have that voice clattering every day this season, when the Orioles and White Sox have almost identical records. I don't know about you, but there is nothing more annoying than a strike interfering with a good wild-card race. Ah, well. Once again, the players and owners seemingly are separated by the kind of chasm that leads to See EISENBERG, 8C i i

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