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Vittorio Pozzo's comments before the World Cup 1934 Final

Author: Isaque Argolo | Creation Date: 2022-05-18 11:47:26

Data providers: Isaque Argolo.
Vittorio Pozzo | 10/06/1934

The eve of a big battle in Rome. Final battle eve.
All the preparatory work done by thirty national teams from Europe, North, Central and South America, Africa and Asia, over the course of a couple of months, all the fighting hard and relentlessly concentrated in these the last few weeks, the beauty of fifteen international matches in eight days — everything ends, culminates and resolves itself in tomorrow's final. All. That every contender fought for the final and tended to Rome.
Ambitions, aspirations, hopes have gradually improved with the dwindling of the lot of contenders, and now they are no longer the legacy, if not of two representations, those of Czechoslovakia and Italy.
Bohemians and Azzurri reached the honor of the final in different ways, not only in different groups. The difference was the task to be performed and the way to go. The fate that had been forced to reasonableness in the formation of the round of 16, in the disposition, that is, of the different teams of the first day of the fight, took his revenge as soon as it had the freedom to do what it wanted. It has accumulated the most combative, most aggressive units, certainly the most highly rated, all on one side, all on one side of the scales.
And so it happened that the Italian team, which had the right to have hopes, immediately had to think that, to get to the final, they had to get rid of either Austria, or Hungary, or Spain.
In fact, the Spanish eleven was one of the most formidable obstacles. It took 210 minutes of play to defeat them. Spain deserves in the opinion of all those who have seen them in Genoa and Florence the qualification of the most combative, most ardent, most energetic and most positive team to have appeared in the tournament. In the opinion, then, all the Italians involved — managers and players — Spain was clearly the most dangerous of the opponents faced.
Italy went through the scrutiny of similar opponents reaching the final with a game that perhaps no other team participating in the tournament would have been capable of.
On the other hand, the characteristics of the struggle were not marked by the same traits of energy and combativeness. That was — once Argentina was eliminated — the sector of composed, calm, closed, less ardent teams. No fight to the death, no display of high speeds, no waste of breath, no crazy waste of energy. A more methodical game, on the other hand, a more complete one based on calculation and study. Germany, in the first place, and Sweden and Czechoslovakia almost to the same extent, imparted these characteristics to the type of activity carried out in the group.
For us there is no doubt about the regularity of the results that led to a final between Czechoslovakia and Italy and the fact that the two teams that have reached the honor mentioned were the most deserving of the two sectors in which the fight took place.
The Azzurri won without difficulty in the match against the United States, Italy were, despite the very bitter fight, the best in the two matches with Spain — that in only favorable situations in front of goal they had double the Iberians and the best proof it is provided by the even fantastic activity performed by Zamora and his substitute — and Italy fully deserved the victory over Austria in Milan. The work carried out by the Italians overwhelmed that of every other contender in the group, infacted with generosity and technical value.
For Czechoslovakia the question is different. In their case it was essentially class and experience that imposed themselves. Romania may have initially upset the Bohemians; Switzerland may have given them serious headaches, and Germany may also have enclosed them in the circle of a more orderly game and loyal to the dogmas of special tactics. The Bohemians always managed to find the key to the problem, to re-establish the situation and to impose themselves.
There is an element of experience in the Czechoslovakia team, something traditional, which makes the team one of the most dangerous fighters. The players have changed since the heyday of Bohemian football. There is no longer the same class in their individuals — which certainly Čambal is not worth Káďa, nor Krčil is worth Kolenatý, nor Sobotka a Vaník — but the whole, the complex has retained the characteristics of the team.
Germany was the most technically difficult opponent Czechoslovakia had to deal with. But the Germans, with all the advances, have managed to give style and method to their game, but not that firmness and shrewdness that only come from experience.
Experience is invaluable in international competitions, in battles full of responsibility. Temporary substitutes can be found, not absolute substitutes. For these reasons, Czechoslovakia must be considered as a deserved winner of their group. For the same reasons for which they represents a tougher obstacle for Italy, a more difficult adversary, infinitely more difficult than the mass does not believe.
The mass is easy to illusions. A feat enchants her and, according to her, smooths out any difficulty. After a match with good behavior and a happy outcome, the next opponent can no longer resist, according to her. It is not thought that every match has its own story in itself in sport and that, in this case, football thrives on episodic events. It is not thought that the aspirations and hopes of one side are matched by the ambitions and tendencies of the other, it is not taken into account that no team, in the game of football, acts as a stop and a target for the other, as in shooting. If one thinks, the other also thinks; if one acts, the other also works. In football, contenders target each other with obstacles that are mobile and gifted with intelligence. This is the hard part.
Czechoslovakia is a tough and experienced team. They do not enter the field to lose and will fight on equal terms with the Azzurri.
Azzurri do not allow themselves to be deceived by the supposed ease of the task. They know what is required of them. The technical, physical and moral means necessary to represent the colors of Italy have been forged. To do their duty, with faith, with seriousness, with pride, this is what they aspire to. And this they will do.
And, if the fulfillment of this duty were to give Italian football the most coveted of titles, never a prize would have crowned in a more worthy and deserving way the efforts of a crowd of athletes.