Mané Garrinch Brazil's Greatest Football Player

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The nation of Brazil has given the world many dribbling magicians over the years, but none were as beloved or fondly remembered as Mané Garrincha. It 's easy to understand the masses ' infatuation with him – Garrincha 's tale is a story of a man who overcame multiple birth defects to become one of football 's greatest stars. With him as the team 's heart, Brazil won two consecutive World Cups in 1958 and 1962. In 1999, Garrincha was voted the seventh greatest football player of the 20th century. Having been born with a deformed spine and a right leg that was six centimeters longer than the left one, Garrincha 's future as a professional football player seemed rather bleak from the outset. In addition to his unsightly physical attributes, he…show more content…
That Brazil team was especially famous for its attacking prowess, with Garrincha, Didi, Vavá, Mário Zagallo and a 17-year-old Pelé providing the ammunition. After sitting out the first two games, Garrincha started against the formidable Soviet Union; it took him only three minutes to throw the opposition into disarray by dribbling past two defenders and hitting the post. Brazil eventually won the game 2-0, with Garrincha 's impressive performance ensuring that he started every game from there on out. After setting up the first two of his side 's goals in the final against Sweden – which Brazil won in dominating fashion 5-2 – Garrincha was voted to the World Cup 's All-Star…show more content…
Brazil arrived at Chile as reigning champions and an obvious favorite for the title; however, their chances took a turn for the worse after Pelé suffered an injury in their second match in the group stage. This put even more pressure on Garrincha as the focal point of the team 's attack, and people were starting to wonder if he was capable to lead the team on his own. As it turned out, he was. With two goals against England in the quarter-final and another two goals against Chile in the semi-final, Garrincha played the best football of his career, dazzling the home crowd and the television audience in the process. On the day following their defeat, the Chilean El Mercurio newspaper asked its readers, "What planet is Garrincha from?" Brazil eventually defeated Czechoslovakia in the final 3-1, with Garrincha winning the Golden Ball as the player of the tournament. The 1966 World Cup was a different story, with Brazil being a shadow of its former self and getting eliminated in the group stage. Garrincha played the first two games and scored in a 2-0 win over Bulgaria. After his last international match, it became clear that Brazil had never lost a game while fielding both Garrincha and

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