TheFA.com looks back to England's classic World Cup semi-final encounter
Ray Driscoll looks back to England's classic World Cup semi-final encounter with Portugal in July 1966 . . .
The two sides reached the last four in vastly different circumstances. Portugal topped the highly competitive Group Three table with a 100% record, following three straight victories over Hungary (3-1), Bulgaria (3-0) and Brazil (3-1).
Eusebio, 'the Black Panther', top-scored for Portugal with three of those nine goals and almost single-handedly rescued their Goodison Park quarter-final when they were in danger of falling victim to a great World Cup upset.
North Korea (earlier 1-0 victors over Italy) had raced into a 3-0 lead against a bewildered Portugal after just 22 minutes and were going all-out for more when Eusebio took the game by the scruff of its neck.
He scored four times, snatching the initiative away from the popular Koreans, and José Augusto scored another to give Portugal an improbable 5-3 victory.
With the enormous advantage of playing all their matches at Wembley, England advanced to the quarter-finals via the Group One contest - a goalless draw against Uruguay followed by unconvincing 2-0 victories over Mexico and France.
The highlight had been England's first goal of the tournament, Bobby Charlton's 35-yard piledriver against Mexico. Roger Hunt's opportunism had accounted for the other three goals.
England coach Alf Ramsey went into the quarter-final against Argentina with two fundamental problems: a lack of penetration down the wings and the loss of goalscorer supreme Jimmy Greaves, injured against France.
To remedy the first obstacle Ramsey introduced his 'wingless wonders' - bringing back Alan Ball to play in a withdrawn midfield role opposite Martin Peters. Ramsey's second new option saw the relatively untried Geoff Hurst taking Greaves' place alongside Hunt.
In an ugly quarter-final at Wembley, Argentina were reduced to ten-men when their skipper Rattin was dismissed, after first refusing to leave the field. Argentina, defending cynically, hoping to take the match into extra-time and the lottery of a coin toss, were undone by a late goal.
Peters broke on the left, curled a cross to the near post and Hurst glanced a header across 'keeper Roma and into the opposite corner.
Three days later England met Portugal at Wembley, and the footballing public had its faith in the 'Beautiful Game' properly restored in a match fit for connoisseurs.
French referee M. Schwinte was not required to blow his whistle until the 23rd minute - for an innocuous obstruction on Eusebio - whilst Portugal did not concede a free-kick until the 57th minute. It was a case of the irresistible force (Portugal's 14-goal attack) meeting the immovable object (England had yet to concede a goal in the Finals).
Ramsey designated Nobby Stiles to man-mark Eusebio, a role the Manchester United star had recently carried out to devastating effect in his club's 5-1 European Cup victory over Benfica in Lisbon.
On the few occasions that Eusebio did break out from Stiles' relentless shadow the England defence, marshalled by the impeccable Bobby Moore, stepped in to snuff out the danger. On 31 minutes, Ray Wilson threaded a delightful ball through the inside-left channel.
Roger Hunt's effort was blocked by the legs of 'keeper Pereira, but Bobby Charlton swept home the rebound from the edge of the box for 1-0.
The Portuguese, inspired by their skipper and midfield general Mario Coluna, tried valiantly to play their way back into this absorbing contest, but Bobby Charlton booked England's place in the Final with his second goal 11 minutes from time. George Cohen found Geoff Hurst close to the by-line, Hurst beat Hilario and laid the ball back for Charlton to drive home.
In a wonderful show of sportsmanship several Portuguese players congratulated Charlton as he ran back to the halfway line. Otto Gloria's team still had the character to lift themselves and give England an anxious last spell - and with seven minutes remaining England conceded their first goal of the tournament.
For once, Simoes got the better of Cohen and crossed to Torres whose goal-bound header was handled on the line by Jack Charlton. Gordon Banks, convinced where Eusebio would place the penalty, saw Coluna interrupt the striker's run-up with a whispered instruction. Fearing that he had been 'rumbled', Banks changed his mind - only to realise too late that he had been right first time.
Now Portugal sensed a dramatic reprieve. Simoes broke away again only to be denied by a last-ditch tackle by Stiles who lambasted his fellow-defenders for their carelessness. Still Portugal pressed. Coluna side-stepped a tackle and crashed in a rising drive that was brilliantly tipped over by Banks.
When M. Schwinte finally blew for time, Eusebio sobbed bitterly in the centre circle - his dream of a World Cup Final appearance ruined by the tigerish tackling of Nobby Stiles.
Two days later, Portugal had the consolation of clinching third place by defeating the Soviet Union 2-1, Eusebio scoring his ninth goal of the tournament and Torres grabbing the winner two minutes from time.
England, with the help of Geoff Hurst's hat-trick and an eagle-eyed Russian linesman, went on to win the World Cup.