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Monday, 15 April, 2002, 08:33 GMT 09:33 UK
Sweden 1958
The Brazil team after the first of their four World Cup wins
Brazil after the first of their four World Cup wins
Brazil won their first World Cup with a 5-2 victory over the hosts Sweden in a tournament that marked the arrival on the world stage of the incomparable Pele.

Despite being only 17, the Brazilian scored a hat-trick in the semi-finals and added two more goals in the final.

The tournament's founder, Jules Rimet, had died two years earlier and so missed the arrival of players such as Bobby Charlton, Juste Fontaine, Vava and, of course, Pele.

Fontaine was the tournament's leading scorer in Sweden, netting 13 times to help France finish in third. His record still stands.

Rising star Pele (right) challenges Swedish keeper Kalle Svensson
Pele (right) challenges Swedish keeper Svensson

Some 55 teams entered and two former champions, Italy and Uruguay, failed to qualify for the finals, along with Belgium, Holland, Switzerland and Spain.

This was the year for the "new" footballing nations, with Wales, Northern Ireland and the USSR taking part for the first time and all going as far as the quarter-finals.

West Germany, the defending champions, and Sweden, the hosts, topped their groups, along with the hugely impressive French team and Brazil.

To reach the play-offs, Northern Ireland beat Czechoslovakia while the USSR knocked out England.

But that was as far as either newcomer went, losing their quarter-finals to France and Sweden respectively.

Wales played their part in a piece of history as they went out 1-0 to Brazil, with the solitary score coming from one Edson Arantes do Nascimento.

It was the first World Cup goal for the man soon to be known throughout the world as Pele.

Brazil's dominance

Once he had the taste, there was no stopping him and he went on to score a hat-trick in Brazil's semi-final victory over France.

Their opponents in the final were hosts Sweden, managed by Englishman George Raynor, who had beaten West Germany 3-1 in the other semi.

After the disappointments of 1950 and 1954, this was to be the start of Brazil's period of dominance.

Sweden took the lead in the fourth minute, but goals by Zagalo, Vava (two) and Pele (two) gave the Brazilians a deserved 5-2 victory and their first World Cup.

Before the final, Brazil had the Swedish cheerleaders banned from the pitch because they were worried they would give the hosts an added advantage.

But, when Brazil won, the entire nation showed the world just how to celebrate.

Group 1 results:
Northern Ireland 1-0 Czechoslovakia
West Germany 3-1 Argentina
West Germany 2-2 Czechoslovakia
Argentina 3-1 Northern Ireland
Czechoslovakia 6-1 Argentina
West Germany 2-2 Northern Ireland

Group 1 play-off:
Northern Ireland 2-1 Czechoslovakia (aet)

Group 2 results:
France 7-3 Paraguay
Yugoslavia 1-1 Scotland
Paraguay 3-2 Scotland
Yugoslavia 3-2 France
Paraguay 3-3 Yugoslavia
France 2-1 Scotland

Group 3 results:
Hungary 1-1 Wales
Sweden 3-0 Mexico
Mexico 1-1 Wales
Sweden 2-1 Hungary
Hungary 4-0 Mexico
Sweden 0-0 Wales

Group 3 play-off:
Wales 2-1 Hungary

Group 4 results:
USSR 2-2 England
Brazil 3-0 Austria
USSR 2-0 Austria
Brazil 0-0 England
England 2-2 Austria
Brazil 2-0 USSR

Group 4 play-off:
USSR 1-0 England

Quarter-finals results:
Brazil 1-0 Wales
West Germany 1-0 Yugoslavia
France 4-0 Northern Ireland
Sweden 2-0 USSR

Semi-finals results:
Sweden 3-1 West Germany
Brazil 5-2 France

3rd/4th place play-off:
France 6-3 West Germany

World Cup Final:
Brazil 5-2 Sweden

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