By Martin Cloake
One of the most dramatic matches in international competition history took place on 6th July, 1960, at the Parc des Princes in Paris.
The occasion was the semi-final of the first ever European Championships, then called the European Nations Cup.
Tournament hosts France (despite being without legends Just Fontaine and Raymond Kopa) were heavy favourites, but went behind on 11 minutes to a Milan Galic goal. But just one minute later Jean Vincent hit a sweet equaliser. On 43 minutes, France took the lead again through Francois Huette.
In the second half, Maryan Wiesnieski put France 3-1 up in the 52nd minute, only for Ante Zanetic to pull one back for Yugoslavia just three minutes later. But within seven minutes, Huette restored France’s two-goal lead.
The story, however, wasn’t over. Not by a long chalk.
On 75 minutes, Tomislav Knez pegged France back again by making it 4-3. Three minutes later the tie had been turned upside down, with Drazan Jerkovic’s instant brace giving Yugolsalvia a 5-4 lead in the 78th and 79th minute respectively.
The French bombarded the Yugoslav goal for the final 10 minutes but without success, Yugoslavia were through to the final after one of the most brilliant and dramatic comebacks in international football history.
Perhaps even more astonishingly, only 26,370 spectators were present to witness the scenes.